Nevada Water Program Director

Reno, NV, US


Reno, Nevada (NV) NV401


The Nature Conservancy is the leading conservation organization working to make a positive impact around the world in 69 countries, all 50 United States, and your backyard. Founded in 1951, the mission of The Nature Conservancy is to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. Visit to learn more.

The Nature Conservancy offers competitive compensation, 401k or savings-plan matching for eligible employees, excellent benefits, flexible work policies and a collaborative work environment. We also provide professional development opportunities and promote from within. As a result, you will find a culture that supports and inspires conservation achievement and personal development, both within the workplace and beyond.


The Nature Conservancy’s Nevada Chapter seeks a highly motivated and solutions-oriented conservation leader to serve as our Water Program Director. The Water Program Director provides strategic leadership and builds partnerships for improving water resources management and freshwater ecosystem conservation in Nevada. With the assistance of other conservation staff and consultants, the Water Program Director identifies scientific and policy approaches and collaborates with other stakeholders to improve the ecosystem performance of state, regional and federal water management and policies.


The Water Program Director is responsible for leading the development and implementation of strategies to improve the environmental performance of water resources management, law, and policy at the state and regional level and with federal agencies. S/he provides leadership to the Chapter’s efforts to prioritize, protect and restore freshwater ecosystems. The Water Program Director represents the Conservancy publicly and develops constructive relationships with a wide range of stakeholders, including the state legislature, the office of the State Engineer, agricultural and municipal water users, conservationists, sportsmen, funders, and others.

With the assistance of conservation staff and consultants, s/he is responsible for developing the Chapter’s technical proficiency in state water law, hydrology and ecosystem flow requirements. The Water Program Director assists in securing public and private funds for conservation activities. The Water Program Director will not initially have management responsibility for other staff, but will integrate new water resources management strategies into existing Conservancy teams engaged in multiple priority watersheds across Nevada.

The position will be based out of Reno or Las Vegas.


  • Works as part of a multi-disciplinary team of conservation staff and consultants to set priorities and strategies for freshwater ecosystem conservation throughout Nevada.
  • Develops the Nevada Chapter’s technical proficiency on science, law and policy of sustainable water resources management.
  • Provides programmatic and technical expertise on a variety of freshwater issues including conservation of groundwater-dependent ecosystems, environmental flow restoration, climate change and river and wetland restoration.
  • Develops Chapter positions on and recommendations for improving state, regional and federal water resources law, policy and science.
  • Represents the Conservancy publicly with key stakeholders.
  • Develops productive relationships and strategic partnerships necessary to advance and implement environmentally sustainable water resource policies.
  • Negotiates and oversees contracts with consultants.
  • Develops collaborative relationships with Conservancy staff outside Nevada, including the Colorado River Program, the North America Freshwater Program and other Conservancy chapters.
  • Manages complex work program with shifting priorities.
  • Makes decisions in face of ambiguity and in absence of complete information based on analysis, experience, and judgment.
  • Assists in raising public and private funds to support position and more broadly achieve freshwater conservation outcomes.
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain and under physically demanding circumstances.


  • BA/BS degree and 5 years’ experience in hydrology, water law, management or policy or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop trust-based relationships and strategic partnerships, and to collaborate with a broad range of interests.
  • Demonstrated ability to integrate complex information from across multiple scientific and policy disciplines and creatively develop strategies for solving problems.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Experience managing complex or multiple projects, including staffing, workloads and finances under deadlines.
  • Experience working in teams and motivating actions of others over whom s/he does not have authority.
  • Negotiation skills.


  • Master of science, J.D. or Ph.D. plus 5-7 years’ experience in hydrology, water law, management or policy or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Demonstrated experience influencing, developing and implementing conservation policy.
  • Knowledge of current trends and practices in hydrology, ecological flow requirements, water resources law and policy.
  • Knowledge of Nevada water law and policy and freshwater ecosystems.
  • Communicating clearly via written, spoken, and graphical means in English and other relevant languages.
  • Politically savvy and experienced in partnership development (partners, community, government).
  • Multilingual skills a plus.
  • Multicultural experience preferred.


To apply to position number 44261, submit resume and cover letter as one document. All applications must be submitted in the system prior to 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on June 8, 2016.

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The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of men and women of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

The successful applicant must meet the requirements of _**The Nature Conservancy’s background screening process._**

Position Title: Nevada Water Program Director

Job ID: 44261

Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Regular/Temporary: Regular

Location: Nevada