South Carolina State Director

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Deadline to Apply:

Sunday, August 18, 2019, 11:45pm



Charleston or Columbia, SC
United States

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About Us: 

The Nature Conservancy is the leading conservation organization working to make a positive impact around the world in more than 72 countries, all 50 United States, across 6 continents and your backyard.  Founded in 1951, the mission of The Nature Conservancy is to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends.  One of our core values is our commitment to diversity.  Therefore, we are committed to a globally diverse and culturally competent workforce.  Visit to learn more.


The Nature Conservancy (TNC) seeks a proven and dynamic leader to serve as State Director, to advance the organization’s conservation and fundraising agenda in South Carolina, regionally and worldwide.  The State Director will lead a staff of 27 with an annual operating budget of $4.7M with offices in Columbia, Mount Pleasant and Greenville.  As one of the senior leaders within the organization, the State Director provides strategic leadership for TNC’s state, regional and global conservation work and significantly contributes to and shares responsibility for conservation strategies, policies, programs and fundraising efforts across the entire organization.

The State Director functions as the executive director and conservation strategist for the South Carolina Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, and plays a leading role in the Southern U.S.  Division, which spans several adjacent states and supports major cross-boundary initiatives to advance strategies in three whole systems: South Atlantic Seascape, Long Leaf Pine and Southern Blue Ridge. S/he implements organization priorities to address nature-based solutions for climate adaptation (storms and floods), climate mitigation (forests); climate policy in advancing a low carbon future; land and water protection/restoration with direct TNC action, through partnerships, and public policy/funding; coastal and marine fisheries management; and prescribed fire management. S/he is accountable for South Carolina’s success in creating a vision to implement TNC’s global conservation approach, leading by example with organizational values, producing tangible and measurable conservation results at scale, managing teams, advancing fundraising initiatives to raise revenue for conservation, and ensuring financial sustainability of the Chapter.   

Essential Functions: 

The principle role of the State Director is to lead, manage, and inspire the staff and trustees of the South Carolina Chapter to collectively achieve the maximum contribution to the organization’s mission.

S/he ensures success in conservation fundraising programs, and contributes intellectual, financial, and human resources to priority cross-boundary initiatives.  S/he supports alignment of activities by securing, coordinating, and configuring resources, capacity, and programs to address the most critical conservation priorities of the organization at multiple scales.  S/he is therefore responsible for collaborating with others across the division and throughout the organization on the procurement and application of resources in South Carolina as well as in areas beyond her/his span of authority.  S/he serves as the primary statewide spokesperson for TNC to internal and external audiences (including staff, volunteers, the Board of Trustees, public and private donors, government agencies and officials, community leaders and other partners) and cultivates those audiences to support and promote TNC’s mission and vision.

The South Carolina State Director oversees fundraising and works with staff to secure increased private support for conservation, engaging with major donors and supporting staff in donor cultivation. The Director approves budgets and sets priorities which dictate private and public fundraising goals.

The Director organizes staff to meet the conservation needs of South Carolina and of the global organization. S/he will lead though TNC values. The State Director reports to the Southern U.S. Division Director and works closely with the South Carolina Board of Trustees. 

Responsibilities & Scope: 

  • Overall responsibility for conservation results, philanthropy activities and goals of the South Carolina chapter, and for integration of regional and global priorities.
  • Incorporates organizational values and competencies as foundational elements in all aspects of work.
  • Ensures recruitment, management, and development of high quality and effective staff.
  • Provides leadership in public policy efforts in South Carolina and the region.
  • Ensures that programmatic commitments, financial standards, and legal requirements are met. Manages reputational and financial risk within our policies, procedures, and values.
  • Presents and represents South Carolina’s and TNC’s vision in a compelling and engaging manner to internal and external audiences as lead spokesperson. Delivers effective and persuasive speeches and presentations on complex topics to employee groups, managers at all levels, board members, and outside organizations.
  • Demonstrates a willingness and ability to travel routinely throughout South Carolina and globally as required.
  • Is flexible to work beyond the normal workday, including weekends, as necessary during deadline periods.
  • Is responsible for development and execution of the South Carolina strategic conservation plan and annual work programs, delivered on time and within budget.
  • Directs, prepares, presents and/or participates in negotiations of project proposals with governmental, bilateral and/or multilateral agencies.
  • Actively participates in Southern U.S. Division leadership team, collaborating on innovative, cross-boundary projects.

Minimum Qualifications: 

  • Bachelor’s degree and minimum of 7 years of experience as a leader in the conservation arena, non-profit sector, advocacy, or related for-profit area.
  • Extensive and proven management experience including ability to motivate, lead, set objectives, and manage performance of a large multi-disciplinary team.
  • Superb communication and presentation skills required, including experience communicating with and presenting to diverse audiences including donors, board members, employees, outside partners, or equivalent.
  • Experience in fundraising and budget management.

Preferred Knowledge, Skills, & Experience:

  • Strong competency working effectively across differences such as race, culture, disabilities, socio-economic class and language groups. Experience in leveraging differences to drive organizational outcomes.
  • Deep commitment to conservation and to nature. 
  • Knowledge of and experience in South Carolina is preferred.
  • Success as an inspirational leader who has effectively motivated staff to achieve and sustain excellence. Proven managerial talent in budgeting, staffing, and performance management.
  • High energy, forward thinking, creative individual with high ethical standards. 
  • Outstanding leadership and visionary qualities and able to work effectively with and through others in a decentralized and geographically dispersed organization. Excellent people skills
  • Proven technical skills, analytical ability, good judgment, and strong operational focus. 
  • Well organized and self-directed; politically savvy and a team player.  Works well under pressure.
  • Commands attention, is agile, and effective in managing group processes during presentations or discussions.
  • Exercises sensitivity and empathy in working in an advisory role with partner organizations.  
  • Experience in identifying and nurturing talent and fostering a culture of accountability.
  • Demonstrates emotional intelligence, and an ability to listen and learn with genuine interest and curiosity.
  • Can demonstrate the ability to lead with our core organization values of integrity beyond reproach; respect for people, communities and cultures; conservation results that are tangible and lasting; and commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Organizational Competencies: 

Builds Relationships

Builds productive relationships by interacting with others in ways that enhance mutual trust and commitment.

Collaboration & Teamwork

Works collaboratively with stakeholders across levels, geographies, backgrounds and cultures to improve decisions, strengthen commitment and be more effective.

Communicates Authentically

Communicates proactively and in a timely manner to share information, persuade, and influence with the appropriate level of detail, tone and opportunities for feedback.

Develops Others

Takes ownership to help develop others’ skills, behaviors, and mindsets to help them maximize their workplace contributions.

Leverages Difference

Demonstrates commitment to harnessing the power of differences strategically; the skills for consistently seeing, learning from and taking strategic action; and the self-awareness and behaviors to work across difference of identity and power respectfully and effectively with all stakeholders. Actively seeks to build and retain a diverse workforce and fosters an equitable inclusive workplace climate by recruiting and hiring for relevant differences and drawing upon the diverse perspectives of all.

Systems Leadership

Thinks and acts from an integrated, complex systems perspective and takes a long-term view on the organization’s challenges and opportunities to develop strategies to optimize the achievements of conservation goals over time.

Job Duration:


How to Apply:

Visit and apply online with cover letter & resume to Job ID #47827. All resumes and required cover letters must be submitted through The Nature Conservancy’s online application system. The application deadline is August 18, 2019.  If you experience technical problems with the site or application process, please contact and include the job opening ID.