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Fuels and Fire Crew Leader

Job Location

Helena, MT


Type of Job



$2,720 p/month AmeriCorps living stipend

Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Nov 8, 2023

About the job

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Gain professional job skills, become an effective leader, and launch your wildland fire career!

Montana Conservation Corps believes that through conservation service work and authentic connection, you can sharpen your ability to create change and join the next generation of leaders for a better world. At MCC, we focus on the growth of our participants, positively impacting our climate and environment, and transferable job skills.

What you will do:

As a crew leader, you will work to oversee 4-5 adult crew members on 9 day overnight conservation projects on some of the most breathtaking landscapes in the Northern Rockies and Plains. Some crew leaders will lead a crew solo, some will lead with a co-leader, and some will have an assistant crew leader. The crew you will oversee will be made up of adults who are 17-30 years old and come from a variety of backgrounds and locations throughout the country. Crew Leaders will be responsible for helping to facilitate crew member growth, manage conflict on their crew, and support the crew in completing quality project work in the field.

Crews will camp for the full duration of a hitch (i.e. 4-9 day project assignment), oftentimes in remote locations on varied terrain and in all weather conditions. Camping accommodations vary, including car-camping and remote backcountry settings away from a vehicle. This crew will work throughout the forest service and other agencies. Work will primarily consist of wildland fuels mitigation projects, a high proportion of chainsaw use, fireline construction and other forest health monitoring activities. Not all CLs will work on all types of projects. Crews may be deployed for natural disaster relief. Learn more about the variety of project work here!

Participants will have the opportunity to receive extensive training and potential certifications in wildland firefighting, including a nationally recognized chainsaw certification (S212), basic wildland firefighting classes (S130, S190, L180, IS100, IS700), in addition to having an opportunity to receive a wildland fire incident qualification “red” card. Should conditions allow, there may be an opportunity to participate in prescribed burning or active wildland firefighting. during your term of service. This is NOT guaranteed.

What you will get:

As a Crew Leader, you will participate in a 3 month dynamic and immersive leadership development program crafted over two decades to enhance your confidence, resilience, and technical capabilities. You will engage in activities that will help you explore communication styles, develop emotional intelligence, master conflict resolution, and learn facilitation techniques to teach to different learning styles, and apply your knowledge to new scenarios. Through feedback, reflection, and discussion, you will leave with actionable strategies to become an effective leader.

You will also receive extensive technical training to cover a range of essential skills for outdoor professionals, including federally recognized certifications in chainsaw and crosscut use, defensive driving, and Wilderness Advanced First Aid (WAFA). You will gain expertise in backcountry travel, trail maintenance, Leave No Trace principles, habitat management, and natural resource management. This comprehensive training equips crew leaders with the knowledge and skills needed for diverse situations and challenges.

After a term of service with MCC as a Crew Leader, you will be mentally and physically stronger, more resilient, and have the ability to lead others with confidence. This isn’t just a chance to work in the field and have a positive impact on the environment. This is an opportunity to work on your personal growth, and be prepared to meet any challenge you face in the future.

A term of service with MCC places you in an excellent position for future federal hiring and conservation careers!

Who we are looking for:

We often see applicants who don’t realize they are qualified to take on a leadership role here at MCC, especially those coming from marginalized communities. MCC is a developmental program and it is our job to teach, train, and develop leadership competencies in our participants. We recognize that people come with a wealth of experience and talent beyond just the technical requirements of a job, therefore our job descriptions are guidelines, not hard and fast rules. Your experience, which may include paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work, helps build the competencies and knowledge that translates to our openings. We encourage anyone to apply who has an interest in conservation and bettering themselves for the future.

What Qualities Make a Successful Crew Leader at MCC:

  • A passion for service, the environment, and conservation.
  • A positive mental attitude and seeing others with positive regard.
  • Adaptability and flexibility.
  • A commitment to serving the whole term.
  • A growth mindset - coming willing to learn, grow, and challenge yourself.
  • A commitment to motivating others and their success.
  • A desire to hone your personal leadership style

Location: Helena, MT

Ages: 18-35 (21 or over preferred)

Program Dates: 2/26/2024-10/25/2024

Living Allowance: $1,360 biweekly ($2,720 p/month) before taxes are taken out

AmeriCorps Education Award: $4,826.50 upon completion of the program

Health Insurance: Provided at NO COST

Member Assistance Program: Free 24/7 access to confidential behavioral health counseling, financial assistance, medical/legal advocacy, and more!

Public Lands Service Corps Hiring Preference: Members serving with federal land management agencies may be eligible to receive hiring preference for future federal job placement

Supportive coaching staff invested in your success.

Community Spaces: Access to two community spaces, Corps Members of Color and LGBTQIA2+ Corps Members, to build community, connection, and support during the season.

Food Per Diem while on Projects

Access to Pro Deals

Housing options may be available in specific regions; talk with a Program Manager to learn more!!


Learn More About Adult Conservation Crews!



Watch these Videos to Learn More:

Why Join MCC

Find Community @ MCC

A Day in the Life @ MCC



  • High school degree, GED, or willingness to work towards obtaining a GED
  • Ages 18-35 (21 or over preferred)
  • US Citizen, National or lawful permanent resident
  • Ability to pass a National Service Criminal History Check
  • Ability to eventually hike 3-20 miles per day in terrain that can be steep, rocky or uneven, often wearing a 45lb backpack while carrying tools and sometimes backpacking with full packs of 60 – 70lbs
  • Ability to lift up to 35 pounds repeatedly and use hand and power tools
  • Effective written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to obtain Wilderness Advanced First Aid/CPR training. (Training is reimbursable to allotted amount/ MCC provides training)
  • Demonstrates desire to serve the community and the environment
  • Embraces willingness to work long, hard hours in all weather conditions; ability to be away on overnight trips for up to 10 days at a time
  • Commitment to completing term; available for duration of entire term of service

Strongly Preferred Qualifications:

  • Valid driver’s license, ability to pass a Motor Vehicle Records check
  • 21 years old on the start date of the program


MCC is committed to being diverse, welcoming, and inclusive. We are working to reduce barriers to participating in our programs. This program is available to all, without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity or expression, political affiliation, marital or parental status, genetic information, and military service. We encourage people of all backgrounds to apply. Learn more about Identity and Equity @ MCC!

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