Water Conservation Director in Northern Nevada

Please post the below M.S. opportunity to the EEB website:

POSITION TITLE: Water Conservation Director

STATUS: Full-time, Exempt

REPORTS TO: Executive Director

POSITIONS REPORTING TO THIS POSITION: Water Program Manager, Sr. Water Program Coordinator

LOCATION: Position can be based in either Reno, Nevada or Yerington, NV, with frequent travel between the two locations as well as other locations as necessary.

TIMELINE: Open until filled

BACKGROUND: The Walker Basin Conservancy (Conservancy) is leading the effort to restore and maintain Walker Lake while protecting agricultural, environmental and recreational interests in the Walker Basin (https://na01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=www.walkerbasin.org&data=02%7C01%7Cmadeline.hennessey%40uconn.edu%7Cb021464bb8a5466de63308d778a34ef6%7C17f1a87e2a254eaab9df9d439034b080%7C0%7C0%7C637110515155835794&sdata=ne4Il%2FhXh%2FJEyPYeDX2dm0SsQ2AqBCf830InVEzPTeI%3D&reserved=0). The dynamic nature of the Conservancy and its diverse resource management portfolio provide unique opportunities to develop innovative, interdisciplinary conservation solutions while working closely with a dedicated and passionate staff. The Conservancy team is comprised of approximately 25 full-time employees and increases up to 70 during our field season.

The Conservancy manages a complex real-property acquisition program, acquiring land, water and related interests from willing sellers in the Walker Basin, for the benefit of Walker River and Lake. In addition, the Conservancy manages intensive restoration and stewardship activities on thousands of acres in the Walker Basin.

JOB PURPOSE: The Water Conservation Director will primarily be responsible for effective and efficient management of the organization’s water program activities including acquiring water from willing sellers, overseeing staff in the acquisition of water rights and overseeing the legal and monitoring actions required to ensure acquired water is protected instream to Walker River and Walker Lake. The ideal candidate will have the vision and leadership to develop, grow and manage the Conservancy’s water program and its staff, the ability to effectively build partnerships, work closely with agencies and develop high-level strategic plans as this organization seeks and obtains additional funding sources and develops innovative programs and initiatives. This position is an essential part of the organization’s Senior Leadership Team and the successful candidate will have proven ability to effectively communicate with all levels of the organization and primary business partners.

Essential Functions

Program Development and Administration (40%)

*             Develop, fund, implement and manage projects that advance the mission of the Conservancy in the Walker Basin;

*             Provide strategic oversight of restoration objectives and serve as a technical resource to staff and/or Board of Director committees;

*             Work with program staff and the leadership team to develop annual monitoring plans and priorities;

*             Partner with stakeholders to develop new investment and/or funding models for irrigation infrastructure upgrades that benefit the watershed;

*             Regularly engage with key partners and constituents in a variety of individual, group and public meetings;

*             Assist in messaging and communication of the programmatic activities;

*             Work closely with staff, Board and associated committees to ensure information is being shared and that the various overlapping components are effectively communicated;

*             Develop and manage staff effectively and efficiently, laying out schedules well in advance and adapting as necessary while investing in developing staff and increasing responsibility thresholds;

*             Ensure metrics established in WBCs strategic plan are being met, adapt as necessary; and

*             Develop and implement a program specific strategic plan.

Acquisitions (30%)

*             Oversight of negotiations with willing sellers on water acquisitions and regular communications with Conservancy staff, grantors, technical consultants and outside legal counsel;

*             Oversight of escrow activities and due diligence required in closing water acquisitions; and

*             Ensure appraisals and valuations are updated annually and incorporate updated information as appropriate.

Management of Assets (30%)

*             Oversee the development and implementation of strategy for protecting water instream. This includes working closely with outside legal counsel, technical support consultants and others to adapt and respond to changes related to legal rulings and adjust strategies as appropriate;

*             Oversee management, tracking and monitoring of all water assets acquired and/or managed through third-party agreements; and

*             Develop and maintain an annual budget for all program activities.

Physical and Mental/Intellectual Requirements

Strength, dexterity, and coordination to use keyboard and video display terminal for prolonged periods. Strength and stamina to bend, stoop, sit, and stand for long periods of time. Dexterity and coordination to handle files and single pieces of paper; occasional lifting of files, stacks of paper or reports, references, and other materials. Some reaching for items above and below desk level. Some bending, squatting, and stooping to access files and records is necessary. The manual dexterity and cognitive ability to operate a personal computer using word processing and databases. The ability to interact professionally, communicate effectively, and exchange information accurately with all internal and external customers. Ability to appropriately handle stress and interact with others, including supervisors, coworkers, clients, and customers. Regular and consistent punctuality and attendance. Light lifting (up to 25 pounds) is occasionally required.

In compliance with applicable disability laws, reasonable accommodations may be provided for qualified individuals with a disability who require and request such accommodations.  Applicants and incumbents are encouraged to discuss potential accommodations with the employer.

Working Conditions

Position functions indoors in an office type environment where most work is performed at a desk.  Position may occasionally be required to travel by car to pick up or deliver material.  Environment is generally clean with limited exposure to conditions such as dust, fumes, noise, or odors.  Frequent interruptions to planned work activities occur.


*             M.S. degree in water policy, water law, water management, hydrology or similar field and at least seven years of management related employment or an equivalent combination of education and experience;

*             Knowledge of, and experience with, western water law and water rights;

*             Knowledge of, and experience with, water resource policy, management and institutions;

*             Strong commitment to collaborative conservation efforts;

*             Experience in budget development and oversight;

*             Excellent analytical and quantitative skills;

*             Excellent verbal and written communication skills, ability to clearly and concisely give direction;

*             Excellent computer skills and proficiency in Excel, Word, and Outlook; and

*             Team player with a strong work ethic and is always up for a new challenge.

Salary & Benefits

Minimum salary of $75,000, commensurate with experience.

Excellent employee benefits package which includes:

*             Employer paid health, dental, vision and life insurance plans for employee;

*             Retirement 403(b) plan includes a 6% automatic company contribution;

*             120 hours of annual paid vacation, increasing to 160 hours after first year of employment;

*             16 hours of annual personal leave;

*             Employer paid holiday week between Christmas and New Year’s;

*             60 hours of annual sick leave;

*             11 paid holidays;

*             Health and wellness subsidy; and

*             Employer paid professional development

Position will remain open until filled. Only top candidates will be contacted.

Please send cover letter and resume to:

Amy Gladding


Subject Line: Water Conservation Director

Please call (775) 463-9887 ext. 116 with questions.

Walker Basin Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer.

Equal Opportunity Statement – Walker Basin Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer. WBC does not discriminate against any employee, applicant, director, officer, contractor, or any other person with whom it deals because of race, creed, color, disability, age, sex, veteran status, religion or political affiliation. WBC complies with all federal and local statutes prohibiting discrimination in employment.

Reasonable accommodations may be provided for qualified individuals with a disability.

Disclaimer – The statements contained herein are intended to describe the general nature and level of work to be performed by the employees in these positions. The statements are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of a person in each position. Other responsibilities, duties, and skills may be assigned and management retains the right to add or change the responsibilities, duties, and skills at any time.