American Conservation Experience - Staff

American Conservation Experience (ACE) is a dynamic non-profit organization dedicated to providing rewarding environmental service opportunities to over 1,500 members (youth and young adults) each year, and does so with a skilled staff of approximately 150 employees across the U.S. ACE has a national reputation for providing professional development opportunities on a variety of conservation projects for the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, and numerous state and local land management partners, either with crew based work or with individually placed interns

Job Title: National Director of EPIC Programs

Location: Flexible

Department/Division: Emerging Professionals In Conservation (EPIC)

Status: Regular Full-Time, Salary (Exempt)

Schedule/Hours: Full-time, 40 hours/week with additional hours as needed. Typical work hours of 9:00 am-5:00pm, local time with some adjustment expected when needed to accommodate National Operations. Some evening and weekend hours may be occasionally required.

Reports To: ACE Chief Program Officer

Direct Deports: 3 EPIC Division Directors (Divisions: National Park Service, US Fish and Wildlife, US Forest Service/Bureau of Land Management)

Travel: Yes, 15% anticipated, higher at start


ACE EPIC Program Summary:

ACE's Emerging Professionals in Conservation (EPIC) program has a national reputation for providing young adults and recent graduates with hands-on, professional development individual placement opportunities to work alongside and under the guidance of agency mentors as they apply their knowledge of resource management on their path to becoming the next generation of resource and land managers. The ACE EPIC Program, places and supports over 700 members in individual placement projects each year across the country in partnership with the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the US Forest Service, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, as well as numerous other state, local, and nonprofit conservation agencies. EPIC Individual placement projects supported are wide ranging including but not limited to cultural resource management, wildlife monitoring, environmental education, interpretation, trail work, historic preservation, physical sciences, GIS, and many more.


Position Summary:

The National Director of EPIC Programs (NDEP) is responsible for oversight of all aspects of the ACE EPIC Programs. In close coordination with the ACE Chief Program Officer and EPIC Division Directors, the NDEP will develop and implement best practices across EPIC Divisions, support partnership development, and represent the EPIC Divisions within ACE Programming and across the organization.

Key attributes:

  • A love of learning and leadership development.
  • A belief that leadership begins with listening. An inclusive, collaborative and inspiring leader. A track record of building and leading creative teams, both direct reports and non-direct reports.
  • Experience in strategic planning and managing multiple priorities.
  • An exceptional communicator; Someone comfortable making professional, persuasive presentations both internally and externally.
  • Demonstrated commitment to building a diverse and inclusive staff and culture at all levels.

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

  • Provide regular management and support of EPIC Division Directors. Provide direct support as needed to EPIC Division staff when a Division Director is unavailable. Act as primary organizational representative for EPIC Divisions
  • With the Chief Program Officer and Division Directors develop and monitor yearly budgets for EPIC Divisions. Reforecast budget with Directors quarterly and consults on adjustments as necessary
  • Review EPIC Division grants and agreements that reach organization specified thresholds. Support EPIC Division Directors in capturing and monitoring required metrics in grants and agreements
  • Support Division Directors in maintenance of existing and development of new partnerships in their agency portfolio
  • With the Senior Program Leadership Team, work to support cross-geographic and/or programmatic opportunities with existing partners
  • Identify and support opportunities for EPIC Division growth into new agencies
  • Identify and support implementation of opportunities to share resources across EPIC Divisions that will improve efficiency of operations
  • Facilitate weekly EPIC Division Director meetings. Regularly attend individual EPIC Division meetings
  • Lead quarterly EPIC Division goal setting and coordinate with quarterly Program Department and ACE goals
  • With the Chief Program Officer, recruit, hire and train new Division Directors as needed. Develop a standard onboarding, orientation and training program for EPIC Division Directors
  • With the Director of Risk Management, establish Division specific resources and tools for EPIC staff to successfully support members during incidents with specific attention to the delineation between ACE and partner responsibilities
  • With the Director of Risk Management, assure that EPIC staff regularly review incidents and implement recommended changes in practice to improve crew safety
  • Act as needed within the ACE Incident Management System hierarchy
  • Collaborate with the Chief of People and Culture to identify and provide relevant training and professional development opportunities for EPIC Division staff.
  • Support EPIC Division staff specific trainings
  • Consult with Program Operations on the EPIC staff and member applicant review process and support training on it
  • As needed, facilitate meetings by developing agendas, managing logistics, documenting discussions/outcomes, and ensuring follow-up and accountability.
  • Assist in developing, and adhere to, ACE safety policies and procedures. Monitor EPIC compliance with these procedures and protocols. Report any unsafe or harmful conditions, incidents and/or accidents immediately
  • Foster a culture and environment that positions ACE for success and ensures that ACE is the program of choice for partners, members and staff

Responsibilities and tasks outlined are not exhaustive and may change as determined by ACE

Required Experience and Qualifications:

  • Proven experience in managing national scale program/operation elements, especially facilitating processes, preferably within a nonprofit environment
  • Must be able to take initiative and participate in collaborative efforts.
  • Project management experience overseeing multiple projects and teams working in different locations.
  • Experience with developing and managing budgets, preferably in excess of $1 Million.
  • Experience with federal agreements, grants and partnership development.
  • Understanding of and/or experience working with young adults in national service preferred
  • Ability to work remotely and independently with minimal supervision
  • Highly competent in using a variety of software and database systems
  • Willingness to travel long distances away from work location
  • Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation
  • Ability to work in an organized and professional fashion, respecting deadlines and confidentiality
  • Ability to proactively and professionally communicate and receive instructions and feedback and facilitate a positive and productive work environment.
  • Professional verbal and written communication skills
  • Strong time management skills

Other Requirements:

  • Must be authorized to work in the U.S.
  • Valid driver's license and an insurable driving record; comfortable driving ACE/agency vehicles as needed
  • Proficient in English
  • Ability to pass a federal criminal background check
  • Willing to abide by ACE's Drug Free workplace policies. ACE reserves the right to drug test at any time
  • Willing to abide by ACE's healthy workplace policies.
  • All ACE members and staff must verify that they are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by the time they start their term/position or request a medical or religious exemption.

Individuals who identify with groups typically under-represented in the conservation industry, including women, non-binary individuals, LGBTQ individuals, and people of color are particularly encouraged to apply.


Physical Demands, Work Environment and Working Conditions

  • Physical Demands: Requires frequent sitting, standing, walking, hiking, carrying, using hands to handle or feel, reaching with hands and arms, talks and hears. Manual dexterity required for use of hand and power tools, computer keyboard/mouse and other office equipment. Required to stoop, kneel, climb stairs, and/or crouch. Ability to hike over rough terrain, and camp overnight under field conditions.
  • Vision Requirements: Requires close, distance, peripheral and depth perception vision as well as the ability to focus.
  • Weight Lifted or Force Exerted: Frequently moves up to 25 lbs., ability to move up to 60 pounds.
  • Environmental: Outdoor and indoor conditions. Work environment conditions can change frequently; working under adverse weather conditions and in various climates.
  • Noise Environment: Moderate noise.
  • Travel: This position requires domestic travel.



Compensation: Competitive compensation package with benefits that include paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, 401K, and health, dental, vision and other supplemental insurance:

  • Medical/Health Benefits: ACE offers competitive medical and ancillary plans (health, mental health, dental, vision and other supplemental benefits). ACE Staff members are also eligible to participate in ACE's 401k retirement plan.
  • Holidays, Vacation, and Sick Time: As an ACE staff member, you will be eligible to accrue up 80 hours of paid vacation time annually during your first two years of employment, then it increases to 120 hours annually. Additionally, ACE observes 11 paid annual holidays and provides 10 days (or 80 hours) of paid sick time annually.
  • Additional Benefits: Outdoor Perks - As an ACE staff member, you will be eligible to receive pro deals which include deep discounts on outdoor gear providing 30 - 50% off retail prices on 100s of established outdoor gear brands.

To Apply:

Please use the "Apply Now" to fill out an application. You must include a resume, three professional references, and a one-page cover letter detailing your interest and relevant experience. Qualified applicants will be contacted by email to arrange an interview. Applicants must follow all application instructions in order to be considered for this opportunity.



American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.

American Conservation Experience - Staff
  • Apply Now

  • * Fields Are Required

    What is your full name?

    How can we contact you?

  • Sign Up For Job Alerts!

  • Share This Page
.