If hard, rewarding work is calling you …
Join our team to help protect and preserve Virginia’s most vital resource. Our staff works hard to nurture the James, enjoy the James, and restore the river we love.
Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountains and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.
Founded in 1976, the James River Association is the oldest and largest river conservation group in Virginia, and the only organization solely dedicated to protecting and restoring America’s Founding River, the James River. JRA’s mission is to be the guardian of the James River – to provide a voice for the river and take action to promote conservation and responsible stewardship of its natural resources. To accomplish our mission, JRA’s two strategic goals include: 1) Achieving a fully healthy James River; and 2) Helping communities within the watershed realize the benefits from a healthy James River and support protecting it.
The James River Association (JRA) is seeking a full time James RIVERKEEPER®.
The James RIVERKEEPER® program, established in 2001, is an integral part of JRA’s efforts to protect and restore the health of the James River. With a base of operations in Richmond, VA, the James RIVERKEEPER® will focus on the unique needs and issues affecting the James River and its tributaries, as well as the communities around them. The James RIVERKEEPER® will be the eyes, ears, and voice for the James River and serve as a full-time advocate for the conservation and responsible stewardship of the river.
Duties and Responsibilities:
- Serving as a full-time advocate for the James River and its watershed: identifying, investigating and helping to resolve issues affecting the health of the river.
- Advancing initiatives to protect and restore the river through policy making, regulatory compliance, land stewardship, and individual actions. The James RIVERKEEPER® will work with the Advocacy team to develop strategies to address threats to river health utilizing a range of advocacy, science, and legal tools as needed.
- Expanding and diversifying the constituency for healthy rivers by raising public awareness of river issues and providing training for community advocates.
- Educating a variety of audiences including the general public, students, landowners, business leaders, and policy makers about the James River.
- Working with strategic partner organizations in the region on efforts related to river health.
- Assisting the Staff Scientist with fieldwork and research near or on the river and tributaries.
- Must have a deep commitment to environmental and conservation issues, especially as related to the James River.
- Must have knowledge of the James River and its watershed including its ecology, culture, and issues affecting its health.
- Must have the ability to conduct investigations of the river and potential pollution problems – boat handling and canoeing skills are encouraged.
- Must have strong skills in communicating difficult technical issues to lay audiences, including elected officials and the general public. Must be able to professionally and effectively communicate and advocate positions even when controversial.
- Must have strong initiative and be a self starter. Must be able to manage multiple projects concurrently, including schedules, budgets and reports and be able to effectively work independently with little supervision.
- Should be an experienced and effective advocate and educator with demonstrated success working on conservation issues.
- Should be able to work effectively with a broad range of constituents and organizations, as well as manage volunteers.
- Should have a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree in environmental science, natural resources or a related field and preferably at least 3 years of work experience.
- Familiarity with Virginia, as well as federal and local, environmental laws particularly associated with water quality is a plus.
- Familiarity with stormwater regulations and permitting is a plus.
JRA offers a dynamic and flexible work environment. This is a full-time, exempt position. A generous and comprehensive benefits package is provided, including 4 weeks of PTO, 11 paid holidays, 4% 401(k) match, fully paid employee only health and dental coverage, Life and LTD insurance. Salary will be commensurate with experience; expected salary range $42-$45k. JRA is an equal opportunity employer. To apply for this position, please submit your resume and cover letter by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resumes will be reviewed as they are received. The position will remain open until filled. Interviews will be scheduled with qualified candidates starting June 15th, 2022. Otherwise, no calls or visits, please.
The James River Association (JRA) is seeking a Senior Environmental Educator to be based in its headquarters office at Neck of Land in Williamsburg, Virginia.
JRA Education Program:
JRA’s education team consists of 8 full-time staff, and 9 part time staff responsible for program coordination and on-the-ground implementation of JRA’s education programs. JRA runs educational programs from three main offices; Williamsburg, Richmond, and Lynchburg. JRA’s education programs shape the next generation of stewards of the James River through meaningful river-based learning experiences that inspire confidence, ecological understanding, nature appreciation, and conservation action. These programs annually serve approximately 11,000 youth in 1st – 12th grade classrooms and extra-curriculum youth groups with day-long and multi-day educational experiences through:
- NOAA BWET Grant – In May of 2021 JRA received a NOAA BWET grant to work with 3 different school districts with in the James River Watershed. The three school districts are Surry, Amherst, and Hopewell. JRA will conduct MWEE investigations with all three school districts.
- James River Leadership Expedition: A 9-month leadership program that is composed of 4 educational sessions. Session one is a 5 day down-river environmental learning adventure for rising 9th thru 11th grade students in the James River. Sessions 2, 3 and 4 are focused on students creating capstone projects that focus on community outreach.
- James River Explorations: A one day on-the-water program based on canoes/kayaks or JRA’s education boat. Work with many local school systems; Hampton, Newport News, York, Williamsburg, New Kent, Surry.
- General Education: Youth programs and activities at JRA events, classroom presentations, and other specialized service projects.
JRA is seeking an experienced educator who is an enthusiastic leader with managerial experience and excellent communications skills to help manage JRA’s existing education programs. The Senior Environmental Educator position will ensure success and high standards of excellence for all JRA environmental education programming through the oversight and managerial support of JRA education programs and staff. The Senior Environmental Educator will report to JRA’s Lower James Education Manager.
- Working with JRA staff and partners to develop and sustain new and existing education initiatives to further JRA’s mission and vision for a healthy James River.
- Overseeing kayak and canoe paddle education programs. Programs are focused on 6th-12th grade
- Facilitating a supportive, positive, team environment that prioritizes an inclusive community needs-based approach to program development, planning, and analysis.
- Mentoring and supporting education staff in program development, coordination, and implementation.
- Grant proposal writing and quarterly reporting to secure necessary financial support for education program implementation.
- Booking, scheduling, and coordinating education programs with teachers and JRA education program staff, boat captains and crew.
- Lead 85% -90% of the field-based educational programming including weekend, and extended field programs that can last up to 5-days in length.
- Maintaining strong communication with partners including boat captains and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff.
- Building and sustaining strong relationships with school administrative staff, teachers, youth groups and organizational partners to strengthen programming outcomes and ensure high retention of participation in JRA education programs.
- Leading outreach to schools and youth groups to recruit teacher and student participation in JRA education programs.
- Overseeing seasonal and annual maintenance and upkeep for the Lower James River Ecology School facilities and education vessel.
- Engaging with national, state, and regional environmental education networks to strengthen overall impact, effectiveness, and support for environmental education efforts in the James River watershed.
- Assisting with organization-wide initiatives including grass-roots campaigns, large-scale restoration projects, and special fundraising and community awareness events.
Professional and other Qualifications:
- Must have a deep commitment to environmental and conservation issues, especially as related to the James River.
- Must have at least 4 years of experience in the field of environmental, outdoor, and/or experiential education, and a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree in environmental science, science education, or a related field. Strong working knowledge of best practices in providing environmental education experience for secondary school-aged youth is required.
- Must have thorough knowledge of watershed systems and water quality issues. James River specific knowledge highly preferred.
- Must have experience managing education programs.
- Must have strong written and oral communication skills and be able to effectively convey JRA’s mission and vision with diverse audiences of youth, educators, donors, partners, and the general public.
- Must have the ability to build and sustain strong relationships with program partners and volunteers.
- Must be able to manage multiple projects concurrently, including schedules, budgets and reports.
- Must be able to take initiative and work independently in a deadline-driven environment, with attention to detail.
- Must be willing to travel throughout the James River watershed to implement projects as well as flexibility to work weekends as programming requires.
- Must be able to lift 45 pounds in order to move equipment (canoes, kayaks, etc.).
- Must have a valid Driver’s License.
- Experience leading camping and canoeing trips with children and/or adults is a plus.
- Experience with lesson plans that are in accordance with Virginia Standards of Learning is a plus.
JRA offers a dynamic and flexible work environment. This is a full-time, exempt position. A generous and comprehensive benefits package is provided, including 4 weeks of PTO, 11 paid holidays, 4% 401(k) match, fully paid employee-only health and dental coverage, Life and LTD insurance. Salary will be commensurate with experience; expected salary range $40-$45k. JRA is an equal opportunity employer.
To apply for this position, please submit your resume and cover letter with salary history by email to email@example.com or by mail to:
Katie Ferrell/Nat Draper
James River Association
211 Rocketts Way, Suite 200
Richmond, VA 23231
The James River Association is seeking a seasonal environmental educator to be based out of our Williamsburg office who will lead education programs for elementary, middle, and high school students. This position will be responsible for working within a team of five Environmental Educators and assisting with educational programming within the Williamsburg area. Education programs typically extend from February-November.
The Lower James River Seasonal Environmental Educator will be an instrumental member of the education team in the Williamsburg area. This position will be required to work within the team to facilitate field-based educational programming in the Williamsburg area. The schedule of this position will include fluctuating hours with some night and weekend work.
- A deep commitment to environmental and conservation issues, especially as it relates to the James River.
- Experience in the field of environmental, outdoor, and/or experiential education, with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in education, environmental science, or a related field.
- Strong working knowledge of best practices in providing environmental education experience for secondary school-aged youth.
- Thorough knowledge of watershed systems and water quality issues. Knowledge specific to the James River is highly preferred.
- Experience in leading canoeing trips with children and/or adults.
- Experience with lesson plans that are in accordance with Virginia Standards of Learning.
This position will be compensated at an hourly rate of $20 per hour, based upon experience. To apply for this position, please submit your resume and cover letter by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resumes will be reviewed as they are received. The position will remain open until filled. No calls or visits, please.