Executive Director via Idealist

Earth Law Center

San Francisco, CA, US


Earth Law Center (ELC) works to transform the law to recognize and protect nature’s inherent rights to exist, thrive and evolve. We do this by building a force of advocates for nature’s rights at the local, state, national, and international levels. ELC:

  • directly advocates for needed change,
  • builds partnerships with advocates worldwide for change, and
  • furnishes information that advocates need to create change themselves.


ELC seeks an Executive Director to guide the organization toward new levels of sustainability and growth in service of its mission. The Executive Director will lead the organization during a critical time in its history. Now more than ever, we need rights-based laws for nature.


The Executive Director holds overall responsibility for implementing ELC’s mission and serving as its principle spokesperson. Under the general supervision of the Board of Directors, the Executive Director creates and implements strategic plans and workplans, directs all aspects of day-to-day operations and budget oversight, manages the organization’s staff and volunteers, identifies and successfully pursues funding opportunities that ensure the organization’s strong financial health, and conducts program initiatives that advance the rights of all Earth’s inhabitants and ecosystems to flourish, thrive and evolve.

Specific responsibilities include:

Fund Development and Marketing

  • Ensures ELC has the financial resources to advance its mission and goals through foundation grant applications and reports, individual donor development, and other fundraising activities.
  • Drives the organization and the Board in fundraising efforts.
  • Leads marketing efforts to increase the public visibility of ELC.

Program Development and Implementation

  • Develops, oversees, and implements programs and work plans to advance ELC priorities.
  • Drafts and presents oral and written testimony, comments, presentations, research, and reports, and implements other strategies, to advance ELC positions.
  • Develops and implements communication strategies to inform government officials, organizations, the media, and the public about the rights of nature.
  • Builds partnerships to leverage resources and expertise in support of ELC’s mission and work.

Strategic Planning and Visioning

  • Cultivates and implements a shared organizational vision among the Board and staff; works with the Board to develop, review and update as needed ELC’s Strategic Plan.
  • Collaborates with the Board to set work plan priorities in keeping with the Strategic Plan and ensures their timely execution.

Leadership and Staff Development

  • Hires and manages staff in pursuit of strategic planning targets; maintains clear personnel policies; assures compliance with legal requirements.
  • Fosters a positive work environment that encourages staff to excel.
  • With the Chair, provides direction and motivation for the Board of Directors and Committees.

Movement Building

  • Actively partners and seeks collaborative coalitions with regional, national and international organizations and alliances with complementary strategic goals, in service of ELC’s mission. Provides diplomatic and strategic leadership to help collaborative efforts succeed in advancing nature’s rights.
  • Strategically reaches out to new communities and organizations to build a coordinated, grassroots movement for nature’s rights.

Operations and Finance

  • Ensure effective administration of all programs and finances. Establishes and tracks key metrics to monitor progress against goals and achievement of results.
  • Oversees the preparation, implementation and monitoring of annual fundraising, marketing and financial plans, including preparation and tracking of annual budget. Monitors all financial management systems and provides regular, accurate reporting to the Board and Board Committees.
  • Ensures high quality execution of the organization’s programs and services.
  • Ensures the organization complies with all applicable laws and regulations.


  • Proven nonprofit leadership and effective staff and program management skills including: experience managing organizational change; strong financial management and planning skills; ability to retain, motivate and attract strong and creative staff; experience in strategy as well as execution of programs to meet goals; demonstrated ability to work effectively with a Board of Directors.
  • Nonprofit fundraising success and demonstrated ability to establish and manage relationships with major individual and institutional donors, nonprofit organizations and alliances, government agencies, the media, and volunteers for the benefit and support of ELC’s mission.
  • Commitment to ELC’s mission of securing and implementing rights-based laws for nature.
  • Graduate degree in law (strongly preferred), public policy, environmental studies, or related field, with 10+ years in a conservation setting. Experience as a nonprofit Executive Director strongly preferred.
  • Ability to work independently, excellent organizational skills, and exceptional written and verbal communication skills, including proven ability to implement communication strategies.
  • High energy level, self-motivated, and results-oriented. Willing to travel. Location flexible.


The position is currently open, but we are looking for the right person to move forward.


Please send cover letter and resume to Diana Weynand, Board Chair, at: [email protected].

This job has the potential of being conducted remotely.