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RAY Conservation Diversity Fellow: Communications Specialist

Job Location

Annapolis, MD


Type of Job



$40,000 baseline salary

Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Mar 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.

ABOUT U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Our mission is to work with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are dedicated to the conservation, protection, and enhancement of fish, wildlife and plants, and their habitats. We are the only agency in the federal government whose primary responsibility is the conservation and management of these important natural resources for the American public. We are dedicated to working with private landowners; federal, state, and local governments; and other traditional and non-traditional partners to conserve our nation’s wildlife and plants. It is important to us to bring nature to the American public to all different communities and backgrounds. We build trust through empathy, competency, equity, and inclusion, and we are committed to creating a more diverse workforce.

The RAY Fellow will work with our Delaware River Basin Restoration Program team in the Chesapeake Bay Field Office. The office works with a variety of partners to achieve on the ground conservation by connecting people to nature; working on endangered and at-risk species; and addressing aquatic connectivity and coastal resiliency. The fellow will also work remotely with our External Affairs and Science Applications programs out of our Regional Office located in Massachusetts.


The Fellow will serve as a communications specialist supporting the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program. Specific duties include generating content for blogs, web, and social media; building relationships with media within the watershed and regularly pitching stories; working with the FWS Delaware River Basin Restoration Program to develop and implement internal and external communications and outreach strategies in support of program goals and objectives.


The fellow would focus on identifying and producing stories about funded projects and activities of the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program, and could include the following tasks:

· Interviewing FWS and partner subject matter experts and producing blogs, social media and web content, and news stories/pitches that reach a variety of target audiences.

· Assisting with website development, photography, videos, and other multimedia products coordinating with our regional External Affairs team.

· Researching and compiling lists of media outlets and social media influencers within the target geography.

· Assisting with development and production of resource materials such as talking points, fact sheets, infographics, slideshow presentations.

· Assisting with development and implementation of strategic communications plans for internal and external audiences.

· Participating in External Affairs team meetings (weekly) and DRBRP team meetings (biweekly) and related meetings and/or webinars as needed.


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 in-person 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 nothad 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.
  • An interest in the field of conservation.
  • Demonstrated intellect and leadership.
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills.
  • An eagerness to learn.
  • Able to perform fieldwork, which could require long days in extreme conditions.
  • GIS skills helpful but not required.
  • A valid drivers-license.


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. The Fellow will be provided all necessary field and office equipment. More details to follow.


To apply for the RAY Fellowship Program, applicants must:

1. Complete the online application survey on the RAY Fellowship Program website:

2. Follow the instructions on the linked application webpage to submit a curriculum vitae or a resume, one essay, one visioning, and one short answer response, 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 not required. Questions about the application process can be submitted to the RAY Conservation Program Manager, Guilu Murphy, via email at

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, sex, handicap, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, or veteran status. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is continually seeking to diversify its staff, particularly to broaden opportunities for individuals from demographic groups that are historically underrepresented in the sciences and in environmental advocacy.

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