Wildlands & Woodlands Website

Highstead works to inspire curiosity and build knowledge about plants and wooded landscapes in order to enhance life, preserve nature, and advance sound stewardship practices.

Highstead Seeks Conservationist -

Regional Conservation Partnerships


Highstead is a regional non-profit conservation organization dedicated to working with regional partners and the best available science to conserve the New England landscape towards the Wildlands and Woodlands vision. Its principal programs include catalyzing the land protection activities through Regional Conservation Partnerships, conservation finance, ecological research, policy analysis, and land stewardship. Highstead employs eight staff members and supports many senior fellows and academic collaborators in advancing its goals. Founded in 1982 and located in the conservation landscape of Redding, CT, Highstead encompasses diverse natural areas, long-term studies on ecological dynamics, beautiful office and meeting facilities, and unique collections of trees and shrubs.

Position Overview

Highstead seeks a talented, creative individual who thrives in a collaborative environment and has experience in land conservation, land use planning, environmental education or natural resources management—and very much a people-person—to fill the new position of Conservationist (Regional Conservation Partnerships).
This position will bring much-needed capacity to support the landscape conservation activities of the Hudson to Housatonic Regional Conservation Partnership (H2H) and Regional Conservation Partnership (RCP) Network. The Conservationist will work with the Senior Conservationist, other Highstead staff, H2H and RCP Network members, Wildlands and Woodlands Initiative partners and other key stakeholders to help advance the pace and practice of large landscape conservation in New England and eastern New York.

Responsibilities and Scope

The Conservationist will bring strong project management experience and a collaborative spirit to support Highstead staff and numerous non-governmental and public agency partners on initiatives that seek to advance the pace and practice of large landscape conservation in the region. The Conservationist will report to and work with the Senior Conservationist. The Conservationist’s primary responsibilities will be in the areas of:

  • Group and Network Coordination and Meeting Facilitation: Help coordinate and facilitate a variety of collaborative conservation groups, networks, and initiatives including H2H and the RCP Network.
  • Project Management: Support and lead projects that help RCPs and their members increase the pace and connectivity of land conservation.
  • Conservation Training and Conferences: Develop, organize, and deliver periodic workshops, webinars and other training for Regional Conservation Partnerships and their members on collaborative conservation topics including new planning and conservation finance tools and resources.
  • Represent Highstead: Attend various regional conservation meetings to foster partnerships that advance the objectives of the RCP Network, H2H, Highstead, Wildlands and Woodlands, and emerging initiatives. 



  • A Bachelor’s degree (Master’s degree preferred) in environmental management, natural resources conservation, forestry, wildlife biology, land use planning, or another conservation-related field
  • In addition to degree programs, 4-6 years of experience in land conservation, land use planning, environmental education, community organizing, or natural resources management
  • Superb oral and written communication skills
  • Proven ability to manage projects
  • Demonstrated ability to manage groups and lead and facilitate meetings and planning activities
  • A collaborative personality and a willingness to engage with partners who have diverse missions and motivations
  • Self-motivation and drive with a focus on delivering results
  • An understanding of and willingness to adopt the role of servant leader in all activities involving RCPs and other RCP Network members and others.

Desirable Experience:

  • Land conservation trust or government agency
  • Geographic Information Systems
  • Graphic design software
  • Municipal and landowner outreach and engagement
  • Social and environmental justice
  • RCP, other partnerships and networks
  • Working in the Northeast.

Terms and Compensation

The Conservationist (Regional Conservation Partnerships) is a full-time position that offers a competitive salary and benefits package. The position will be ideally based at Highstead in Redding, CT, and will require frequent travel around New England and eastern New York.

Additional Information

Further information is available about Highstead (www.highstead.net), the Wildlands and Woodlands Vision (www.wildlandsandwoodlands.org), RCP Network (www.RCPNetwork.org), H2H (www.h2hrcp.org) and many collaborating activities centered at the Harvard Forest (http://harvardforest.fas.harvard.edu) including the Program on Conservation Innovation.

To Apply

Send a curriculum vitae, a description of skills and work experiences in conservation-related work, writing sample, three references, and a statement of interest with the subject line “Conservationist - RCPs Search” as a single PDF to Jody Cologgi at Highstead jcologgi@highstead.net. To be considered, applications must be received by May 1, 2019.