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.

John Lubbock

Staff picking up tires

Seasonal Environmental Educator

The James River Association (JRA) is seeking a seasonal Environmental Educator to co-lead elementary, middle, and high school students of the James River Ecology School (JRES) on Presquile National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), a 1,329-acre island on the James River in Chester VA, for the upcoming school year. Anticipated employment dates are August 1, 2019 – November 15, 2019 and late March 2020 – late June 2020.

The Environmental Educator will assist JRES staff in all instruction, logistics, meals, trip safety, and experiential program content facilitation for day and overnight JRES programs. This position requires weekend and overnight programming, in addition to regular school days. Successful candidates will demonstrate the following: flexibility; excellent communication skills; experience with youth outdoor education; ability to work independently and with a team; enthusiasm; positive attitude; desire and ability to relate to individuals from all backgrounds; willingness to work in a remote, rustic, and communal environment; knowledge of the natural history and environmental issues facing the James River; knowledge of state education standards; comfort in and around boats, canoes and rivers; and physical fitness (able to lift at least 50 lbs, walk 3 miles, paddle across swift moving water). Experience around boats is preferred.

Compensation will be commensurate with experience. Please note that programming will NOT take place during the months of December, January, February, and the beginning of March, so this position will be free to travel and work as desired during those months. Travel to and from the island is required by paddling (kayak/canoe provided), or by pontoon boat during programming. This position does NOT offer paid time off, health, dental, life, long-term disability insurance or a retirement savings program, or any other benefits. JRA is an equal opportunity employer.

To apply for this position, please submit your resume and cover letter by email to abouchard@thejamesriver.org or by mail to:

James River Association
Attn: Chelsea Tickle
211 Rocketts Way, Suite 200
Richmond, VA 23231

Resumes will be reviewed as they are received. The position will remain open until filled, but priority will be given to applications received by July 1, 2019.

Operations Manager

The James River Association (JRA) is seeking a full time Operations Manager to be based at its headquarters office located in Rocketts Landing in Richmond, Virginia.

The James River Association (JRA) is seeking an Operations Manager to strengthen its internal operations so that its programs can be the most effective possible. The Operations Manager will oversee JRA’s financial systems, office systems, human resource policies, and safety procedures. A successful candidate will have strong interpersonal skills, demonstrated project management abilities, experience with managing financial systems, and working knowledge of human resource management. The candidate will also have an overall interest in issues affecting the James River.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Financial System:
    •  Oversee JRA’s financial systems, prepare and assist with yearly operating and programmatic budgets.
    • Supervise the Administrative Assistant and Bookkeeper position in executing and recording transactions in Quickbooks.
    • Prepare monthly internal financial reports and quarterly financial reports for the Board of Directors.
    •  Prepare for annual audit and work with auditors to produce annual financial statements and 990 tax form.
  • Human Resources:
    •  Manage and implement our human resources functions, which include compensation matters, interpretation of our Personnel Policies, new employee orientations, staff training needs, oversight of financial policies and procedures, etc.
    • Consult with JRA’s insurance broker, attorneys, and other outside resources to stay up-to-date on employment related policies, worker’s compensation, and any other policies that many affect employees at JRA.
  •  Office Systems:
    • Manage the office systems of the JRA headquarters in Richmond and our regional offices and facilities (Lynchburg, Williamsburg, Presquile, and Scottsville), by assisting with any issues that may arise and providing advice and support as needed.
    • Ensure that information and communications systems are functioning and meeting staff needs.
    • Supervise Administrative Assistant and Bookkeeper to ensure offices supplies and other materials are available.
  • Safety Policies and Procedures:
    • Oversee JRA’s Fleet and Facility maintenance and operations procedures and communicate necessary information to staff.
    • Oversee JRA’s Safety Program and ensure that safety rules and policies are being followed and documented. Ensure that JRA’s safety manual is up to date and is being distributed to all employees.
    • Working with JRA’s insurance broker, ensure that risks are appropriately managed and that insurance coverage is sufficient.
    • Supervise Safety, Fleet, and Facilities Coordinator position.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Knowledge of Human Resource issues and employment practices with at least 2-3 years of experience in this field.
  • Knowledge of financial systems (preferably Quickbooks), and experience with oversight of financial programs.
  • Must possess leadership skills and the ability to resolve conflicts and help with troubleshooting.
  • Demonstrated success in project management, problem solving, meeting deadlines and schedules, and ability to manage contractors.
  • Strong communications, analytical skills, teamwork, integrity, and reliability.
  • College degree with at least five years of combined experience in human resources and financial systems.

JRA offers a dynamic and flexible work environment with a generous and comprehensive benefits package. Salary will be commensurate with experience. JRA is an equal opportunity employer.

To apply for this position, please submit your resume and cover letter, with salary history, by email to ctickle@thejamesriver.org or by mail to:

James River Association
Attn: Chelsea Tickle
211 Rocketts Way, Suite 200
Richmond, VA 23231

Resumes will be reviewed as they are received. The position will remain open until filled, but interviews will be scheduled with qualified candidates starting June 30, 2019. Otherwise, no calls or visits, please.

Contracted Captain

The James River Association is seeking a part time contracted captain in the Lower James River areas (Richmond, Williamsburg, Hampton Roads), able to meet the following requirements:

  • Interested in being a part of a growing education program that brings classes of students out on the James River to experience the river in a hands-on outdoor environment. Trips include water quality testing and fish trawls.
  • Ability to safely and professionally operate 46’ vessel
  • Be responsible for the safety of crew and passengers, and the condition of the vessel at all times.
  • Able to give a thorough and engaging safety orientation
  • Comfortable following rigorous safety protocols and participating in regular training sessions
  • Ensure safety protocols are continuously followed by all crew and passengers
  • Ability to monitor weather and water conditions and adapt program accordingly
  • Maintain current USCG 25-ton Master of Inland Waters USCG Captain License
  • Have FCC Marine Radio Operator’s Permit
  • Possess First Aid & CPR Certification and ability to respond to medical incidents
  • Maintain a positive attitude
  • Have flexible availability – primarily weekdays
  • Passionate about introducing students to the wildlife and ecosystem of the James River
  • Physically fit (able to lift fifty pounds and work twelve hours) and willing to work outdoors in all weather conditions
  • Collaborative working style; ability to work with Lead Captain, all education staff, and students from a variety of backgrounds
  • Willing to pass a criminal background check, provide a driving record and participate in pre-employment and random drug screening, in accordance with USCG requirements
  • Compensation: $100 day fee + $25/hour

 $100 day fee + $25/hour.  This job does not offer paid time off, group medical insurance, or other benefits. JRA is an equal opportunity employer.

To apply for this position, please contact Elysa Mills. EMills@jrava.org. 540.846.2089