Executive Director

Washington Water Trust

Seattle, WA, US

The Washington Water Trust (WWT) is seeking to hire a new Executive Director (ED) to guide the organization’s dynamic statewide water conservation mission and strategies. The ED will be part of Washington’s active environmental community, working in partnership with federal, state and tribal governments, as well as local governments, conservation groups and community members.

About Washington Water Trust

Established 20 years ago, the WWT is the pioneering and premiere water conservation group in the state of Washington, with offices in Seattle and Ellensburg. WWT uses market-based strategies, technical expertise and collaborative partnerships to restore freshwater flows and aquatic ecosystems both east and west of the Cascades. Over the last two decades, the WWT has restored flows of fresh, cool water to dozens of streams and tributaries in major watersheds across the entire state of Washington to help people and fish.

Our team of creative and experienced individuals works with Tribes, farmers and local communities to improve stream flows and aquatic health for future generations, to meet the challenges of regional population growth and a rapidly changing climate. 

WWT is committed to environmental justice and social equity in its operations and programs, cognizant that water scarcity disproportionately impacts communities of lower income and color. We also recognize that Tribal fishing rights require sufficient streamflow to support fish populations, and endeavor to protect and restore those rights while addressing competing demands on water.

Job Summary

The ED reports to the Board of Directors and is responsible for guiding and implementing WWT’s mission, its programs and operations, and its funding strategies. The ED manages a team of 10 full-time professionals and contractors while maintaining and growing an approximately $1.2 million annual budget. 

The Board, ED and staff work together as a team.  The ED will work in collaboration with the Board and staff to refine and finalize WWT’s strategic plan; oversee the plan’s execution; provide leadership and direction to staff on programs and specific projects; and ensure excellent communication with staff and Board.

The ED will support WWT’s continued expertise and experience in water transactions and conservation, strengthen collaboration and partnerships, and pursue new opportunities as appropriate to restore freshwater environments and resources.  The ED will implement funding strategies and pursue these opportunities by building relationships with current donors; expanding WWT’s support where feasible; and invigorating fundraising events. The ED will continue WWT’s efforts to incorporate racial and social justice into all aspects of its work and operations. 

Duties and Responsibilities


  • Act as a key spokesperson for WWT, communicating regularly with stakeholders, regional authorities and partners to keep them informed of WWT’s work and raise WWT’s presence;
  • Work with the Board and staff to finalize the revised WWT strategic plan and lead its implementation;
  • Oversee development and execution of WWT’s programs and initiatives;
  • Foster effective teamwork and empowerment within the staff, and between the Board of Directors and staff; and
  • Initiate further integration of racial equity and social justice into WWT’s programs and operations.

Operational Planning and Management

  • Lead and manage staff resourcing and execution of project work throughout the state, including performing annual staff reviews;
  • Monitor and evaluate program and project delivery, with special focus on refining metrics and improving program execution;
  • Manage WWT’s overall finances and operations, including monthly and annual financial reports to Board;
  • Assist and empower staff in engaging and managing consultants and contractors and in exploring innovative strategies for advancing the WWT mission;
  • Ensure that WWT adheres to sound financial management practices; and
  • Prepare WWT’s annual budget with the Board Treasurer, and administer WWT’s finances in accordance with the adopted budget.

Fundraising and Marketing

  • Develop and execute an annual communications plan to energize WWT’s donors and raise WWT’s profile;
  • Assist with development and execution of fundraising plan, including grants, personal solicitations and fundraising events; and
  • Work with fundraising staff to identify, execute and manage grant proposals from foundations and government sources


  • Education, training and experience in water or natural resource policy, law or transactions: graduate degree a plus;
  • At least 10 years of professional experience working as an effective leader in the private, public or nonprofit sectors;
  • Solid experience in financial management, and administration of staff and operations;
  • Demonstrated experience in project management, including contract negotiation, budgets, metrics, and execution;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, marked by professionalism and discretion;
  • Readiness to identify and pursue new opportunities and to adapt to shifting circumstances and priorities;
  • Willingness to manage through conflict while maintaining professional relations
  • Passion for sustainable and equitable solutions to water conservation or other environmental issues; and
  • Must be willing to travel frequently (several times a month) throughout Washington State.

Salary and Benefits

This full-time salaried position is currently based in Seattle (although Ellensburg could be an option). Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience but is expected to be in the range of $95,000-110,000. The generous benefits package includes:100 % paid coverage of health, vision, and dental insurance; 12 days of paid holidays; and three weeks paid vacation, sick leave and WWT retirement contributions.

To Apply

Please submit a cover letter describing your qualifications and interest in WWT, a resume, and three or more references in PDF format to [email protected]  Please make the subject of your email: “Your last name-Executive Director Application”. Please address the cover letter to William Stelle, WWT Board President.  Please label each page of all submitted materials with your last name.  No phone calls please.

Applications will be accepted through May 15, 2020 by 4 pm or until filled

WWT is an equal opportunity employer that values diversity in its operations and programs.  WWT provides equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, creed, national origin, religion, age, sex, sexual preference, gender identity, marital status, physical disability or veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable employment discrimination law.