Conservation Field Assistant
Type of Job
$ 35,000- 45,000
Jun 2, 2021
About the job
Title: Conservation Field Assistant
Supervisor: Project Manager, Shenandoah Valley Conservation Collaborative
Location: Harrisonburg, Virginia
Job Classification: Full-time, Non-Exempt
Organization Description. Working to ensure that the land, water, and community resources of
the Shenandoah Valley will be protected for the future, Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley is a
501(c)3 nonprofit formed in 2018 through a merger of five long-standing Valley organizations. The
Alliance serves six counties – Augusta, Rockingham, Shenandoah, Frederick, Page and Warren – and
the cities within them. The Alliance staff, board of directors, and members champion clean water,
thriving communities, and protected rural landscapes. Based in New Market, Virginia, the Alliance
serves as a hub for the partnerships needed for conservation work throughout the Shenandoah
Valley. The Alliance is led by a talented and engaged volunteer board and a staff of five full-time and
two part-time employees, with deep community connections throughout the service area.
The Shenandoah Valley Conservation Collaborative, administered by the Alliance, is a partnership of
land trusts, watershed groups, regional nonprofits, and state and federal agency partners working to
accelerate land conservation and water quality restoration in our region. Together, partners are
working with interested landowners and communities to bring the resources and expertise to
achieve shared goals in water quality, agricultural vitality and protected rural landscapes.
The Position. The Conservation Field Assistant advances the shared conservation goals of the
Shenandoah Valley Conservation Collaborative by assisting the Natural Resources Conservation
Service (NRCS) and soil and water conservation districts (SWCD’s) on-the-ground work with
landowners who choose to implement best management practices on their farm or forest land. The
Conservation Field Assistant will be an employee of Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley but work out
of the NRCS Harrisonburg field office. This two-year position is funded by a grant award
from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
Areas of Responsibility. The Conservation Field Assistant reports directly to the SVCC Project
Manager in consultation with the NRCS district conservationists who direct field activities.
Implement conservation practices that restore clean water (70%)
• Support district conservationists in Harrisonburg, Strasburg and Verona field offices working
with landowners to implement Farm Bill programs, such as EQIP, CSP and easement
• Under guidance of the district conservationists:
o support conservation practice implementation in Shenandoah Valley NRCS Service
o provide technical support to Soil and Water Conservation District partners in
Harrisonburg (Shenandoah Valley District), Strasburg (Lord Fairfax District), and
Verona (Headwaters District) for implementing the Virginia Agricultural Cost Share
o Duties will include, but not be limited to:
- Utilizing NRCS software systems to create maps, conservation plans, conduct
planning assessments using CART and Conservation Desktop;
- Follow up with producers who are behind schedule on their contracts and
provide technical assistance needed to get back on schedule;
- Learn basic engineering design to plan and design conservation practices
such as watering systems;
- Complete job sheets;
- Other duties as assigned.
Assist District Conservationists (15%)
• Carries out any assigned duties, including administrative, that enhance the effectiveness and
efficiency of soil conservation and water quality operations conducted by the field office.
Support collaborative efforts of the SVCC (15%)
• Coordinate with SVCC partners and SVCC Project Manager (who will be housed in Alliance’s
office in New Market)
• Participate in SVCC meetings
• Support SVCC Project Manager in nutrient reduction tracking and other outputs associated
with administration of NFWF grant
• Cross-training with SVCC agency and nonprofit partners on conservation easements, state
and federal agricultural cost share programs
Dynamic work environment, working with people who are committed to making a difference.
Salary range for most candidates is $35,000- 45,000 depending on experience
Generous benefits package and paid holidays and leave.
Requirements of the Position
• Passion for protecting the extraordinary landscape and natural and cultural resources of the
• Excellent written, verbal and interpersonal skills
• Proficient computer skills including Microsoft Word and Excel
• Bachelor’s degree in natural resources/ agriculture or a combination of education and
equivalent field experience
• Knowledge of standard soil and water conservation methods, techniques, measures and
• Ability to work in multiple locations and adaptability in working with multiple teams
• Valid driver’s license; Ability to work outdoors in all conditions
• Experience using aerial imagery and topographic maps to collect field data, use of soil survey
data, and various survey instruments;
• Knowledge of basic engineering practices needed to prepare designs, ability to complete
basic surveying and drafting tasks, and knowledge of construction and excavation;
• Knowledge of land protection tools and practices including conservation easements;
• Familiarity with Shenandoah Valley agriculture, land use, and communities.
Send a cover letter, resume, and three references to firstname.lastname@example.org. Position
is open until filled. Interviews with qualified candidates will begin the week of June 28, 2021.
Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley considers all candidates equally without regard to age, race, gender,
religion, sexual orientation, national origin, disability or other non-merit factors