Executive Director



High Falls, NY
United States


Wild Earth

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Job Type:



Founded in 2004, Wild Earth leads programs for youth, adults, and families, serving more than 4,000 individuals in the Hudson Valley annually. Central to all of our programs is a unique organizational philosophy that prioritizes building connections and relationships in outdoor spaces. Wild Earth nurtures the development and empowerment of youth by fostering reciprocity with nature, cultivating regenerative practices, and uplifting equity and environmental justice. Wild Earth’s current program priorities include:

Supporting Students in Schools: Since 2015 Wild Earth has provided social and emotional support to Kingston City School District students by cultivating consistent mentoring relationships and offering experiential and sensory based programming on the playground and in nature. Wild Earth has also begun a program partner relationship with Ellenville Central School District and may develop that relationship more significantly in the years ahead.

Supporting Hudson Valley Youth and Families - Summer and Year-round Programs: Wild Earth has offered year-round weekend programs and summer camps since its founding in 2004. We provide youth ages 4-17 opportunities to cultivate their sense of agency and belonging through interactive, sensorybased team building experiences that connect them with nature, inspiring leaders, and one another.

Community Engagement Partnerships: Wild Earth is committed to engaging in collaboration with local partners and organizations with aligned vision and values. We believe in the continued growth of regenerative practices and structures that support joy, wellbeing, and connection to place; for our communities require a sustained and shared effort among community and organizational leaders.

As the organization supports growth across its program areas, Wild Earth continues to more fully center justice, access, diversity, and equity (JADE) in our approach and endeavors.

At Wild Earth, salaried staff collaborate in a participative leadership framework to uphold the organization’s vision and mission. Rather than working in a traditional top down model, team members engage in leadership by collaborating in committees pertinent to their expertise and job responsibilities. Through this structure, our leaders support and contribute to org-wide initiatives and considerations that impact their individual work.

The Executive Director (ED) plays a lead role in cultivating organizational culture and internal and external collaboration. In Wild Earth’s participative leadership model, the ED works in close partnership with a team of Directors, to design and implement strategic direction, policy and practice, guided by the full-time staff and confirmed by the Board of Directors. The ED is responsible for setting and supporting the organization’s strategic vision while contributing to the cultivation of an annual budget of $2.5m and a salaried team of 18 staff.

Foundational Role (15%): Our foundational roles as team members uphold the mission, vision, and values of our work. We achieve this through staff meetings and retreats, professional development and training opportunities including JADE, internal communications, and administrative responsibilities.

Core Role (85%):

Supporting Director Team & Strategic Planning

  • Facilitate the organizational structure and processes by which directors are supported in, and held accountable for, working in accordance with the organization’s vision, mission, values, budget, and strategic goals
  • Ensure staff are well resourced and supported to continue improving operational practices and procedures
  • Ensure strong program and administrative integration and promote an equitable and positive organizational culture; assisting, as requested by directors, with internal communication and collaboration
  • Work with directors to provide all staff and Board members the resources necessary to use and practice equitable and participative decision-making processes
  • Provide leadership support when directors seek advice or request assistance

Fundraising, Fiscal & Legal Oversight

  • Ensure and oversee the financial health of the organization in partnership with director team and program branches, including supporting all directors in meeting financial and project goals
  • Steward the Fundraising Circle to develop and implement an annual fundraising plan that aligns with Wild Earth’s mission and core values, resulting in sustainable funding necessary to carry out long-term strategic priorities
  • Cultivate and steward strong and stable relationships with private foundations, individual and family donors, and business sponsors to increase overall financial support for the organization
  • Contribute to the Finance & Operations Circle, ensuring the development of an annual budget and clear financial reporting for approval by the Board of Directors while employing participatory budgeting and financial understanding with staff
  • Support and liaison with the Nature Connection Network, an organization for which Wild Earth currently acts as fiscal sponsor
  • Responsibility for Wild Earth’s compliance with all legal matters affecting the organization

Board & Community Partnerships

  • Cultivate and support a Board of Directors that is aligned with Wild Earth’s mission and supports its efforts to deliver that mission, including legal, financial, operational, and fundraising aspects of the organization
  • Ensure Board of Directors meets on a regular and as needed basis to meet legal, federal, and state requirements
  • Lead monthly Board meetings and serve as a facilitator of timely and transparent staff and Board communication, collaboration, and decision-making
  • Oversee Wild Earth’s engagement with community networks, partnerships, and relationships in collaboration with directors and program branches
  • Act as a representative and spokesperson for the organization, referring inquiries and partnerships to appropriate staff members

Experience and skills:

  • 5+ years or proven track record in successful strategic planning and visioning within nonprofits
  • 5+ years of experience or proven track record in successful fundraising and donor/grantor cultivation
  • Proven competency in financial planning and reporting
  • Strong understanding of fiscal and legal aspects and responsibilities of a 501(c)3
  • Experience with organizational leadership in a shared, participative, or distributive leadership model
  • Strong understanding and commitment to environmental justice and supporting people and communities to connect with outdoor spaces
  • Experience using CRM systems (Salesforce a plus), Google Workspace, and learning software as needed
  • Commitment to Justice, Access, Diversity, and Equity, while welcoming those with identities historically excluded from outdoor ed, such as BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, women and girls
  • Excellent communication and relationship building skills with various stakeholders, ie: participant families, community partners, donors and grantors, and the broader community
  • Ability to support a team of dynamic leaders toward increased capacity in strategic decision making and appropriate risk taking

Position Start Date:

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Job Duration:


How to Apply:

Position open until filled. Ideal start date is January 3, 2023. Send a cover letter and resume to jobs@wildearth.org.

Job Compensation:


Compensation Information:

Hours: 40 hours / week with five hours of built in flex time, Monday-Friday at our office, currently in High Falls. Some remote work is possible.

Compensation: $100,000 / year plus benefits, including health insurance, retirement, and paid time off.

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