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Project Manager, Chautauqua Lake Initiative

Job Location

Chautauqua, NY


Type of Job




Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Aug 20, 2021

About the job

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Chautauqua Institution is a not-for-profit global convener of dialogue on the most significant issues of the day through engagement across four pillars of the arts, education, religion, and recreation. The Chautauqua community is located on the shores of Chautauqua Lake in southwestern New York State and comes alive each summer with a unique mix of visual and performing arts, lectures, interfaith worship/programs, and recreational activities.


The Institution has just recently passed a strategic plan (150 Forward) that endeavors to expand its reach to year-round programming and to harness its brand for continuous impact. The strategic plan defines a cross-cutting imperative to restore Chautauqua Lake to good ecological health, including addressing current and future impacts of climate change and commits to generating support and philanthropy for this initiative.



The Project Manager, Chautauqua Lake Initiative, is a philanthropically funded position to develop, coordinate, and implement strategies to drive a comprehensive, science-based approach to improve the health and sustainability of Chautauqua Lake and elevate its conservation as the centerpiece of the region’s economic prosperity. The Project Manager will lead education, coalition building, and positive action for conservation efforts in the region and support philanthropic cultivation, operations, fiscal management, and community engagement on climate change.


This position reports to the Director, Chautauqua Climate Change Initiative with regular coordination with the Vice President of Campus Planning and Operation and the President of Chautauqua Institution.



Program Development

  • Develops annual program work plans and budgets with clear priorities; including identifying opportunities for program improvement; and ensuring synergies and integration of lake project work as a lived expression of Chautauqua’s new Climate Change Initiative.
  • Serves as the lead in Chautauqua County on all lake-related meetings, convenings, and keeps Institution leadership abreast of progress and issues related to Chautauqua Lake conservation.
  • Fosters effective partnerships with key government, business, and civil society organizations to meet fundraising targets (e.g. through the development of joint project proposals).
  • Strengthens the strategic engagement of interested stakeholders, including through joint initiatives, sharing on best practices, policy updates, and funding opportunities.
  • In coordination with Advancement staff, reviews all project proposals/budgets before submission to donors to ensure that they are designed/planned in accordance with Chautauqua Institution standards.

Policy and advocacy

  • Leads the development of Chautauqua Institution’s strategy concerning lake policies and ensures implementation.
  • Engages with politicians, key decision-makers, businesses, and other important stakeholders for stronger provisions on Chautauqua Lake health.
  • Assembles and develops assessments with members and partners (e.g. presentations, policy briefings, position papers, reports, and information materials).
  • Organizes and manages events and represents Chautauqua Institution at key conferences, high-level events, and meetings, as needed.
  • Actively supports the development of communication activities.

Education and Experience

Required education: Bachelor’s degree in Conservation Project Management, Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Environmental Science, Biology, Engineering, or a related field. Candidates with an equivalent combination of education/work experience will also be considered.


Required experience: Minimum five years of prior project management experience related to advancing environmental, ecological, natural resource, natural sciences, or land and water conservation objectives, with demonstratable achievements working with governments, corporate sectors, aid agencies, civil society, and NGOS.


Skills & Abilities

  • Technical savvy for active use of mobilized technology solutions organization-wide.
  • Problem-solving capabilities to identify complex problems, use critical thinking, logic, reasoning, and relevant information to evaluate options, and develop appropriate, effective solutions.
  • Relationship-building expertise to provide cross-functional leadership and support across interworking internal teams and establish professional connections and networks with external partners.
  • Consultative and collaborative approach to process, procedure, and problem-resolution in teams.
  • Project management capabilities and skills to navigate multiple projects, full cycle, simultaneously.
  • Self-starter who will be a strategic partner focused on work that builds a foundation of process and procedure, accomplishes routine responsibilities, plans for the future, and meets goals.
  • Political savvy to tactfully navigate complex circumstances, make recommendations and resolve problems with an independent judgment that is consistent with the culture, ethics, best practice, policy, procedure, industry regulation, and federal and state law.
  • Creative, innovative thinking and fluency of ideas to lead strategic initiatives and be a key collaborator.
  • A life-long learner who is eager to maintain professional and technical knowledge and use this learning to mentor a team through educational workshops, reviewing publications, establishing networks, participating in relevant professional organizations, and attending conferences.

Work Location

This position is based at the main campus of Chautauqua Institution, which is located in Southwestern New York (Chautauqua County).


Comprehensive Benefits

Chautauqua Institution’s competitive benefits suite includes health insurance, dental insurance, flexible spend (or health savings) account options, vision insurance, complimentary life insurance, access to various fitness and wellness programs, and employee-paid supplemental life insurance and long-term disability options. We help our employees plan for the future through a discretionary employer pension contribution, which has recently been (10%) of gross compensation following a designated service period. The Employee Assistance Program provides virtual access to a network of free services including counseling sessions, legal counsel, financial advisors, and childcare/eldercare referrals.


Discovering Your Chautauqua Experience

There are countless ways that our talent will engage with our mission, vision, and diverse communities, and you are invited to immerse yourself in our programming as a gateway to this experience.


Employees will receive the traditional Chautauqua gate pass, which provides access to all Amphitheater programs except popular entertainment (up to two nights a week) and lawn seating for all performing arts events at the Pratt Avenue performance pavilion, a new, temporary venue for 2021. Designated popular entertainment events in the Amphitheater will require a separate ticket purchase, if tickets are available.


In addition to a traditional gate pass, employees and their families will receive full access to our current and historical programs online at CHQ Assembly.


Joining Our Talent Community

Qualified candidates should apply online at Interested applicants must submit a cover letter and resume, with optional portfolio documents, for consideration. You are encouraged to learn more about Chautauqua Institution at CHQ.organd the 150 Forward Strategic Plan at

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