Manager (Southwest Rivers Program)

Denver, CO, US


Based in the Rocky Mountain Regional Office in Denver, Colorado, the position will manage the planning, development and implementation of the Southwest Rivers conservation program. S/he will support the Director, Rocky Mountain Region (Director) in developing strategies and programmatic priorities, assisting in securing funding opportunities, managing applicable funding sources, management of advisory committees, interacting with existing and potential grant recipients, managing proposal review, providing technical assistance to grantees, reviewing/approving reports from grantees, coordinating with the grants administration team to assure the effective implementation of the Foundation’s grant administration policies, drafting recommendations for staff and Board action, and closely coordinating program efforts with  other Foundation staff.    

The Southwest Rivers program has an initial focus on the Rio Grande and Pecos River systems in New Mexico, west Texas and southern Colorado.  Each watershed has a separate program focus, including riparian and stream restoration, agricultural water leasing and conservation of associated water dependent species.

In addition, the Manager may assist the Director in the development of additional conservation programs across the Rocky Mountain Region.   As new programs are established, the Manager will assume responsibility for management of some of those new programmatic focuses of the Foundation.  S/he is also responsible for other duties as assigned by the Director.



  • Design and implement conservation initiatives for the Southwest Rivers program in coordination with the Regional Director, program partners, public and private funding partners (including corporate partners, private foundations, states, Bureau of Reclamation, Bureau of Land Management, US Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service) and NFWF staff.
  • Recommend program priorities, including measurable goals and objectives; work with program partners to solicit, review and approve grant awards; and monitor and track the progress of each grantee (using Foundation technical and financial tracking databases).
  • Establish and maintain key relationships with public and private partners across the Southwest.
  • Manage applicable public and private funding source(s) as appropriate, including preparation of grant applications and amendments, preparation and submission of financial and programmatic reports and coordination with agency project officers. 
  • Support the Director in the daily operation and management of the Rocky Mountain Region Office in Denver, as needed.
  • Assist the Director in securing additional public and private funding for existing and developing regional programs.
  • Serve as spokesperson, as necessary, for the Foundation’s programs, its conservation objectives and accomplishments.
  • Assure compliance with all requirements of cooperative agreements and assure that all activities are communicated and coordinated with the Director, other Foundation staff as appropriate, and Foundation agency liaisons.
  • Working with partners, continually evaluate program success and recommend opportunities for improving program delivery, including:
    • Analyzing grantee programmatic reports to inventory outcomes and develop relevant collections of case studies;
    • Developing consistent tracking systems for managing grantee performance metrics;
    • Developing reports that synthesize reporting information collected from grantees and document program impact;
    • Organizing site visits with grantees and program partners, as appropriate;
  • Seek and develop opportunities for information sharing among grantees and with policy makers about lessons learned and accomplishments of grant-funded projects, including but not limited to:
    • Convening workshops and symposiums to promote technology transfer and information sharing among grantees and program partners.
    • In coordination with the Communications Team, lead communications and outreach activities, including developing fact sheets, maps, presentation materials, and information for the Foundation’s web site.
    • Preparing briefing materials and recommendations to support decision making by the Foundation’s staff and Board.
  • Develop and maintain relationships with funding partners, working closely with NFWF’s development and government relations staff; 
  • Identifying opportunities to advance NFWF leadership in and contributions to the expert scientific, management, and policy communities in the region; 
  • Ability and willingness to travel regularly and occasionally on short notice.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by the Director.


  • Monitoring scientific literature and Federal and state policy activities for new developments in issues that could impact the Foundation’s conservation strategies for the Rocky Mountain Region.
  • Recommend new processes and procedures as needed to improve existing processes.


  • Advanced degree or equivalent experience with concentration in ecology, conservation science, water resources, agriculture or environmental policy preferred.
  • Minimum three to five years’ experience working with government agencies and/or nongovernmental organizations on issues related to conservation and natural resource management.
  • Experience with western water, water law, voluntary water transactions, riparian and stream restoration and the conservation of desert riparian systems strongly preferred.
  • Experience analyzing, interpreting, and applying pertinent OMB Circulars will be considered a plus, particularly OMB Uniform Guidance and its predecessor Circulars A-110, A-122, and A-123.  
  • Knowledge of western land use and natural resource issues and the biological and political challenges facing the southwestern United States and specifically western water resources.
  • Experience working with environmental indicators and performance metrics preferred.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Excellent organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Experience building consensus and managing conflict among diverse partners.
  • Ability to work independently in a rapidly changing environment.
  • Ability to work successfully in a team environment.
  • Computer proficiency, including databases, spreadsheets, word processing, and graphics. Experience with web content management and Geographic Information Systems is preferred.