RAY Conservation/Blue Carbon Fellow

Job Location

Portland, OR (temporarily remote due to COVID19)


Published By

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Type of Job



$40k baseline salary

Published Date

Feb 2, 2021

About the job

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Inspired by efforts to increase racial diversity in conservation and clean energy, the Roger Arliner Young (RAY) Diversity Fellowship Program aims to increase and facilitate environmentally-related career pathways for emerging leaders of color. The RAY Fellowship Program is a paid fellowship designed to equip recent college graduates with the tools, experiences, support, and community they need to become leaders in the conservation and clean energy sectors—one that, in our visions of the future, fully represents, includes, and is led by the diverse communities, perspectives, and experiences of the United States.


The Pew Charitable Trusts uses data to make a difference. For more than 70 years, we have focused on serving the public, invigorating civic life, conducting nonpartisan research, advancing effective public policies and practices, and achieving tangible results. Through rigorous inquiry and knowledge sharing, we inform and engage public-spirited citizens and organizations, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause. We are a dedicated team of researchers, communicators, advocates, subject matter experts, and professionals working on some of today’s big challenges – and we know we are more effective and creative collectively than we are individually. With Philadelphia as our hometown and the majority of our staff located in Washington, DC, our U.S. and international staff find working at Pew personally and professionally rewarding.

Wise stewardship of resources allows Pew employees to pursue work that strategically furthers our mission in significant and measurable ways. We collaborate with a diverse range of philanthropic partners, public and private organizations, and concerned citizens who share our interest in fact-based solutions and goal-driven initiatives to improve society. Pew attracts top talent, people of integrity who are service-oriented and willing to take on challenging assignments. We provide competitive pay and benefits, a healthy work-life balance, and a respectful and inclusive workplace. Pew employees are proud of their colleagues, proud of where they work, and proud of the institution’s reputation.


For more than 25 years, Pew has been a major force in engaging the public and policy makers about the causes, consequences, and solutions to some of the world’s most pressing environmental challenges. Our environment work spans all seven continents with more than 250 professionals working at the local, national, and international levels to reduce the scope and severity of global environmental problems, such as the erosion of large natural ecosystems that contain a great part of the world’s remaining biodiversity, and the destruction of the marine environment.

Pew has worked in the United States and Canada since 1990 to protect vast stretches of wilderness and more recently expanded our land conservation efforts to Australia’s Outback and Chilean Patagonia. Safeguarding these places offers an opportunity to conserve wildlife habitat, shorelines and landscapes for current and future generations. Our work relies on the sciences of conservation, biology, and economics to advocate for practical and durable solutions to the loss of biodiversity.

In the sea, reforms to how our oceans are managed are essential to address overfishing, pollution, and loss of habitat. Pew began its oceans program in the United States, focusing on ending overfishing and protecting fragile marine habitat. Starting in 2005, Pew’s ocean conservation program expanded around the world and played a significant role in reforming marine fisheries management in the European Union and on the high seas and creating marine reserves around the world. Our work is grounded in the best available science and pursues domestic and international conservation measures that are long-term and provide permanent, durable protections for marine ecosystems.


Pew's conserving marine life in the United States (CMLUS) program focuses on protecting essential habitats found in coastal waters like oyster reefs, seagrass meadows, kelp forests, and salt marsh that provide nursery areas, food and refuge for a diversity of marine wildlife. This includes working with communities and partners to advance management measures at the state and federal levels that conserve and restore economically and ecologically valuable coastal habitats. Additionally, the program promotes an ecosystem-based approach to fisheries management that takes into account the interdependent nature of ocean life. This work includes advancing measures that protect forage fish that feed dependent marine life, protecting ocean habitat such as deep-sea corals, reducing the incidental capture and killing of non-target species (known as bycatch), and integrating the use of comprehensive ecosystem plans into fisheries conservation and management.


This position will be an integral part of a team at Pew that is focusing on elevating the role coastal habitats like wetlands and seagrass play sequestering and storing carbon (known as “blue carbon”). By incorporating these resources into state (and potentially national) policy efforts to mitigate climate emissions via natural climate solutions, we aim to secure new protection and restoration targets as well as leverage new funding opportunities. The Fellow will engage “at the ground floor” in this new body of work (alongside a team based in Portland, Oregon and Washington, DC) to provide technical expertise, education and outreach, focusing on state-based work in California and Oregon and connecting these efforts with national developments as relevant. This work fits within the broader “Conserving Marine Life in the U.S.” program that aims to conserve and restore coastal habitats and advance ecosystem-based fisheries management.


The Fellow will work with the “blue carbon” team on strategies and activities that focus on (1) providing direct technical support to state managers and policy makers to include blue carbon coastal habitats in “natural and working lands” carbon accounting and goal-setting strategies; (2) connecting on-the-ground research with policy-making efforts; (3) raising awareness of blue carbon and the importance of protecting and restoring blue carbon coastal habitats via communication materials and media outreach; and (4) helping mobilize a broad and diverse array of organizations and individuals to support blue carbon-related policies. Specific work includes:

· Organizing and/or participating in meetings with scientists, policymakers, managers and others involved in the natural climate solution space; capturing meeting highlights and developing summaries for the broader team to support collective learning.

· Attending scientific conferences and meetings (virtually, or in person as COVID-19 safety protocols permit) to keep abreast of the latest research; communicating highlights to the Pew team.

· Participating in the development of outreach strategies and products (including written materials, talking points, etc.).

· Contributing to the development of technical materials.

· Tracking national-level policy developments in the climate space, including the development of a Nationally Determined Contribution (i.e., national commitments made via the Paris Agreement to advance climate reduction goals), funding opportunities, etc. and helping connect developments with Pew work on the west coast.

· Keeping the broader Conserving Marine Life in the U.S. team abreast of blue carbon campaign developments and promoting synergies within the broader project team.


In addition to the responsibilities at the host institution outlined above, RAY Fellows will spend, on average, 2-4 hours per week (5-10% of work time) on the following:

  • Actively communicating and building community with their RAY Fellow cohort and previous RAY Fellows.
  • Attending monthly check-ins calls (including 1-on-1 check-ins with RAY program staff and group calls with their RAY Fellow cohort).
  • Meeting regularly with mentors both inside and outside the host institution.
  • Attending monthly professional development webinars, trainings, and other opportunities to build knowledge and skills.
  • Developing a Personal Leadership Plan (PLP) in their 2nd year with the support of supervisor(s), mentors, RAY program staff, and their RAY Fellow cohort. The PLP will serve as a tool for self-reflection, planning, and assessing progress towards professional, personal, and leadership goals.
  • Preparing and leading an hour-long end-of-fellowship webinar highlighting their Fellowship experience.

RAY Fellows will also attend:

  • A 3-day Orientation Retreat in August 2021.
  • A 3-day Mid-Fellowship Leadership Retreat in August 2022.
  • At least one other training or workshop with their RAY Fellow cohort.


Eligible RAY Fellow applicants will:

· Come from a racial / ethnic background underrepresented in conservation and clean energy and demonstrate a commitment to the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

· Be no more than 1 year out of college and have a Bachelor's Degree by July 2021(we are not considering individuals with graduate degrees at this time).

· Have not had a full-time job in conservation or clean energy.

· Have the ability to work in the United States and commit to the entire fellowship.


  • A college degree by the time of employment in environmental policy, environmental economics, natural resource management or related field would be preferred, but not required.
  • An interest in the field of conservation with a preference for coastal and climate policy-related issues.
  • Demonstrated intellect and leadership.
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills.
  • Organizational skills and ability to handle multiple priorities.
  • Working knowledge of ArcGIS would be preferred, but not required.
  • Ability to and interest in working as part of a team.
  • An eagerness to learn.


This is a two-year, full-time fellowship (one year with a one year renewal) starting on or after July 15, 2021.


The Fellowship is compensated and sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts, who offers a competitive salary and benefit program, including: comprehensive, affordable health care through medical, dental, and vision coverage; financial security with life and disability insurance; opportunities to save using health savings and flexible spending accounts; retirement benefits to help prepare for the future; work/life benefits to maintain a good balance; as well as training and professional development opportunities.


To apply for the RAY Fellowship Program, applicants must:

1. Complete the online application survey on the RAY Fellowship Program website: https://rayfellowship.org/appy

2. Follow the instructions on the linked application webpage to submit a curriculum vitae or a resume, two essay and one short answer responses, and a letter of support.

Applications must be submitted to the RAY Fellowship Program no later than March 26, 2021. Transcripts and additional writing samples are notrequired. Questions about the application process can be submitted to the RAY Conservation Program Manager, Guilu Murphy, via email at guilu@elpnet.org.

The Pew Charitable Trusts is an equal opportunity employer, committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. Pew considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to age, sex, ethnicity, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or gender identity, military/veteran status, or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.