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Director of Climate and Land Use

  • Full Time
  • Remote
  • $90,000 to $98,000 is the starting salary. USD / Year
  • Salary: $90,000 to $98,000 is the starting salary.
  • Position is fully remote and some travel is required

Website Groundwork USA

Changing Places; Changing Lives

Director of Climate and Land Use

Groundwork USA seeks a Director of Climate and Land Use to help promote and expand its efforts to support community-based strategies advancing equity, health, and resilience in low-income neighborhoods across the nation.

Groundwork USA is the only network of local organizations devoted to transforming the natural and built environment of low-resource communities — a national enterprise with local roots, working at the intersection of the environment, equity, and civic engagement. Through inclusive, meaningful community engagement and cross-sector collaboration, local Groundwork affiliates, called “Trusts,” transform neglected land and waterways into assets that low-income neighborhoods need to be healthy and resilient while building community capacity. Groundwork USA supports this dynamic network and advances the field of equitable development through national technical assistance and learning network programs for local practitioners. Our work is supported by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the National Park Service and other partners.

The Position

The Director of Climate and Land Use will help support, manage, expand, and codify the work of community organizing, environmental justice, climate adaptation, climate mitigation, equitable land-reuse, and capacity building at Groundwork USA and within the Network. The Director will support the head of the division in the day to day administration of our core climate, land, and water programs.


Responsibilities include:

●      Supporting the head of the division in the day-to-day administration of core climate, land, and water programs, including program oversight, reporting, and financial management.

●      Providing supervision, coaching, and support to highly skilled and independent direct and dotted-line reports.

●      Codifying and analyzing our core programming- making recommendations for refinements in pedagogy, practice, and process.

●      Assisting Groundwork Trusts in carrying out the Climate Safe Neighborhoods (CSN) strategy and consolidating learnings from the partnership into an adaptable, community-centered framework for local action. Including:

  • Coaching CSN Trust project managers and coordinators in community engagement, community organizing, leveraging demonstration projects, community education, and the development and implementation of local systems change strategies.
  • Supporting USA staff & Trusts with developing and strengthening synergies between CSN and other climate resilience programming.
  • Collaborating on initiatives to strengthen Groundwork Trusts and their climate programs, including goal/strategy setting, best practice workshops and developing and implementing systems for supporting peer-to-peer learning.

●      Providing climate-adaptation, community engagement, and project management focused equitable technical assistance to communities- within and external to our network- through coaching, workshops, and presentations.

●      Representing Groundwork USA in national partnerships and diverse public settings, including at conferences, on webinars and workshops, and in meetings with partners.

●      Contributing to grant proposal development and reporting.

●      Collaborating with the Climate, Land, and Water team members to expand the capacity of staff, network members, and the broader sector to engage in equitable land reuse, resident-led climate adaptation projects, and equitable, environmental justice focused systems change.

●      Helping to nurture a collaborative, high-performance culture in a geographically dispersed staff.

●      Contributing to Groundwork USA’s continued progress as an inclusive, culturally competent organization.


Candidates in communities with local Groundwork Trusts (see will be given preference but all locations will be considered. This is a full-time position, but Groundwork USA is committed to flexibility in arranging work schedules to balance work and family responsibilities. This full-time position is remote and some travel is required.


Required Qualifications:

The Director of Climate and Land Use must exhibit the following key competencies:

●      Must share a passion for Groundwork’s values and vision.

●      Familiarity and/or experience with the challenges faced by environmental justice communities.

●      An understanding of meaningful community engagement practices, and ways to effect systems change in low-resource communities.

●      An ability to effectively build relationships with and engage individuals working on the ground in distant locations.

●      Excellent coaching, communication, and relationship-building skills with an ability to prioritize, negotiate, and collaborate with a variety of internal and external stakeholders.

●      Familiarity with climate adaptation strategies and methods.

●      Strong research, project management, and organizational skills, with the ability to independently follow through on assignments, meet deadlines, and facilitate the efforts of the full team to do the same.

●      Strong written and verbal communication skills, including writing, presenting, delivering workshops, proofreading, and editing.

●      Experience with GIS and the use of geospatial analysis to make data-informed land use decisions.

●      At least two years of managerial experience.

●      At least five years of relevant professional experience.


Preferred Qualifications:

·      Additional professional experience, potentially including a master’s degree in a relevant field such as urban planning, urban ecology, or education.

·      Experience working in a leadership position with youth.


Compensation. The starting salary range for this position is $90,000-$98,000, commensurate with qualifications. Benefits include health insurance, dental and vision insurance, a retirement plan with employer match, life insurance, short-term disability and long-term disability, work from home stipend, and generous vacation, sick, and parental leave policies.

Applications.  Please submit a cover letter and resume to Applications without a cover letter will not be considered. Applications will be evaluated on a rolling basis; all applications received by February 25, 2023, will be ensured full consideration. Only those selected for interviews will be contacted – your understanding is appreciated.

Groundwork USA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to maintaining and growing a diverse team, and an anti-racist organization committed to doing business in keeping with core values of relevance, equity, diversity, and inclusion.

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