Project Manager (Nutrient Management)
Experience: Understanding of production agriculture, with 3+ years of experience working with farmers required
Start Date: Tentative, October 1, 2023
Job Type: Full Time, Exempt with benefits
Salary: $68,000-$78,000 per year
To Apply: Please send your cover letter, and resume to JOBS@suscon.org and include “Project Manager (Nutrient Management)” in the subject line.
Sustainable Conservation (a leading non-profit in its field) advances the collaborative stewardship of California’s land, air, and water for the benefit of nature and people. Every day, we bring together businesses, landowners, and government in some of the most productive yet economically disadvantaged parts of California, to steward the resources on which we all depend in ways that are just and make economic sense. Please visit www.suscon.org to learn more about our work.
Sustainable Conservation is committed to addressing policies and practices that have historically prioritized economic benefits to some at the ecological, health, and/or economic expense of others. We engage with diverse entities like businesses, non-profits, agricultural communities, government, etc. to partner with us in co-creating solutions to catalyze more substantial improvements in areas of California where the stakes are highest for getting it right. Centering diversity, equity, and inclusion in our mission and vision is the fullest expression of how we aim to support California. Only by weaving these values through everything we do – both within individual programs and the organization, both in the field and at the office – can we help shape a California where all can truly thrive.
Sustainable Conservation has an exciting opportunity that will play a key role in helping expand impact of a long-standing program to improve drinking water quality in the San Joaquin Valley by reducing nitrate leaching to groundwater. Our Waste Not program works to identify and advance agricultural nutrient management practices that improve drinking water quality in California’s San Joaquin Valley. We are seeking an experienced Project Manager to provide critical project management support to our Waste Not team by ensuring seamless project operations every day. Under the guidance of the Project Director, Waste Not Program, and dotted line reporting to Director of Circular Economies, and also in collaboration with program team members, the Project Manager will be an integral part of the Waste Not team. This role will be responsible for managing on-the-ground implementation, evaluation and scaling of an innovative subsurface drip irrigation system that uses readily-available dairy manure effluent instead of synthetic fertilizers. It will also be responsible for helping address barriers to adoption of manure compost and evaluating emerging technologies that transform dairy manure into value-added products. The Project Manager is responsible for integrating team input and helping to track key decisions and actions needed to complete projects. The Project Manager must also be able to communicate effectively and maintain relationships with a broad array of audiences, both internal and external. Following timelines and paying great attention to detail to meet deliverables is essential. Equally important, the Project Manager should have a passion for climate-resilient agriculture and collaborating with a strong, experienced team that demonstrates expertise in nutrient management, agriculture, water, and policy, among others.
Location: Due to the field work required, our ideal candidate must be willing to work from either our Modesto office or any other location in the San Joaquin Valley. Our teams work in a hybrid work environment with an option to work remotely a few days a week. The role will require frequent travel in the San Joaquin Valley area in addition to periodic travel throughout the state.
- Initiate, plan, and complete projects to meet deadlines and support implementation of projects
- Collaborate with internal project team to strategize, develop, monitor and lead work plans, and proactively follow-up on to-dos
- Lead projects that include on-farm implementation, including facilitating meetings, communicating priority tasks and roles, motivating partners to reach project milestones, pivoting in response to new information, and responding in a timely manner to project-related requests
- Understand and evaluate the efficacy and suitability of nutrient management practices and technologies for California dairies
- Analyze data to assess and convey agronomic, environmental and economic impacts of adopting new practices and technologies
- Collaborate with internal and external partners to evaluate and address regulatory and economic barriers to scaling adoption of practices and technologies
- Coordinate and lead field days or focus groups to educate farmers and stakeholders showcasing projects
- Independently schedule meetings, draft agendas, take meeting notes, identify and communicate action items, and incorporate action items into work plans
- Prepare written documents, including project update and final reports, recommendations, best management practices, and summary evaluations of practices and technologies
- Engage and maintain strong relationships with a variety of partners, including farmers, industry associations, scientists, government agencies, and private sector companies
- Any other projects/duties as assigned
Experience and Skills Required
- Understanding of production agriculture, with 3+ years of experience working with farmers required
- Demonstrated ability to lead and motivate teams to reach milestones
- Working knowledge of nutrient management and/or agronomics, Certified Crop Advisor (CCA) a plus
- Strong analytical skills and ability to understand technical details, agricultural engineering or similar background preferred
- Ability to collect, organize, and analyze data
- Exceptional communication (verbal, written, and presentation skills) and listening skills with emphasis on sharing information with diverse audiences
- Very strong project and time management skills, including demonstrated ability to prioritize tasks to meet deliverables and established timelines and manage multiple projects simultaneously.
- Very strong organization and planning skills as demonstrated by the ability to track and document conversations, concepts, and action items
- Strong problem-solving and independent thinking skills, and ability to thrive in a dynamic environment
- Ability to work both collaboratively and independently and in cross functional team settings
- Commitment to principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion; desire to work in collaboration with a broad range of partners
- Keen interest in climate-resilient agriculture, and knowledge and/or motivation to learn about California agriculture, nutrient management, and water.
- Excellent computer skills, including knowledge of MS applications such as Excel, Word, and PowerPoint
- Valid CA Driver’s License and a willingness to travel as required
- Proof of vaccination against COVID-19 (including booster) required
- Knowledge of environmental issues impacting agriculture and/or California and technologies & practices available to address those issues
- Knowledge of California dairies, dairy cropping systems, and manure management a plus
- Knowledge of policies and regulations related to agriculture in California a plus
- Economic or financial expertise a plus
- Experience with fertilizer and soil amendment industry a plus
- Multi-lingual/multi-cultural skills and/or training, Spanish language a plus
What we offer: A competitive compensation package based on experience, fully paid health insurance benefits, generous match on 401k, FSA, EAP, vacation, floating days, sick leave, plus the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day as holiday leave. Our greatest benefit is our culture. Our staff is collaborative, dedicated, and caring. We believe in articulating and practicing our values (Collaboration, Respect, Results, Honesty, Learning, Well-Being) at work and have a strong commitment to bringing a DEI lens to our work and workplace culture.
At Sustainable Conservation we value culture and diversity and as an equal opportunity employer we encourage qualified individuals from all backgrounds to apply to our job openings.