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Retreat and Office Manager

Job Location

Occidental, CA


Type of Job




Published By

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Published Date

Jul 29, 2021

About the job

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The Occidental Arts and Ecology Center (OAEC) is an 80-acre demonstration, education and advocacy center and organic farm located in western Sonoma County, California. Now in our 27th year, OAEC's work focuses on cultivating ecological literacy and building the capacity of civic and social movement leaders and organizations to guide their communities toward an ecologically regenerative, economically viable and socially just future. We offer a diverse and interrelated set of programs and partnerships to achieve our mission, including modeling land-based resiliency, training change makers, policy advocacy, and building the capacity of communities and organizations to lead their own rapid transition to a more just and sustainable world.




OAEC seeks a talented and enthusiastic individual to join our experienced, highly effective and joyful staff collective. The Retreat and Office Manager is responsible for coordinating the various OAEC departments involved in hosting our workshops and the many environmental and social justice organizations who come to OAEC for a retreat each year. This position is also responsible for training and supervising our two annual Program Administration Interns in the management of OAEC’s office systems and being on-site retreat hosts. The Retreat and Office Manager reports to and assists the Executive Director.




Office Management

  • Interview and select, train and supervise the two annual Program Administration Interns who live on-site and work part-time in the office. Manage the weekly work plans of the two interns in support of all the other responsibilities of the Retreat and Office Manager listed below:
  • Manage the “reception” functions of the main OAEC office: receiving phone and email inquiries, and assisting visitors and deliveries in finding the staff person they are looking for, with a welcoming and professional spirit of service.
  • Manage our physical office spaces, including stocking supplies, maintaining office equipment, and holding staff to our ‘beauty way’ standards of caring for our spaces.
  • Maintain the shared OAEC Calendar for all organizational activities including workshops, retreats, tours, events and staff comings-and-goings.
  • Manage the intake and registration for events, including our Permaculture Design Certification course, OAEC’s annual Chautauqua Review, and other special events.
  • Be flexible to occasionally support the administrative functions of OAEC’s communication, development and program staff.
  • Attend weekly (Thursday) staff meetings, participate in various ad-hoc committees, and participate in our annual performance evaluations.

Retreat Coordination and Hosting

  • Be a point of contact for many of the guests and groups we welcome to the Center, and inform/coordinate the whole staff on how best to support their needs.
  • Receive inquiries from organizations seeking to schedule a retreat; negotiate, draft and sign contracts detailing the terms of each retreat; and work with the Bookkeeper to invoice for deposits and final payment for each retreat group.
  • Manage the various online calendars and tools we use to effectively coordinate the details of each upcoming on-site workshop, retreat or event among the related OAEC departments involved (i.e. Facilities, Kitchen, Beauty Way/Housekeeping and Garden).
  • Maintain communication with the organizational contact person for any upcoming retreat to assure their expectations are clear and accurate, and to ensure that they communicate to all their retreat participants what we need them to know about their stay at OAEC.
  • Train and manage our Retreat Hosts (made up of Interns and other on-site staff) so that each of our Hosts do their jobs with a high-level of emotional/social intelligence, humility and care, checking-in with our guests to meet their needs, and tending retreat spaces to be clean, equipped and ready for use.
  • Coordinate the schedule of the various staff Retreat Hosts, one of whom will always be on a shift during the entire time of a retreat, 24/7. For weekday shifts, 9-5, schedule yourself and the two Program Administration Interns as the primary Retreat Host on duty, and for evenings, overnight and weekend shifts, schedule other onsite staff to ensure someone is always on-call as Retreat Host.


(Please do not apply if you do not meet the following requirements)

  • Deeply in alignment with OAEC’s values, mission, theory of change and programmatic activity (see We seek someone who is passionate about working with a land-based organization committed to the restoration of biological diversity, and to ecological, racial, economic and social justice.
  • Prior office/administration experience, preferably in a mission-based non-profit organization, and strong organizational skills with meticulous attention to detail.
  • Ability to organize and prioritize work, and to be self-motivated and self-managing as this role will require both independent work and work with the entire OAEC staff collective.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, with a sense of humor and a positive attitude, and an interest in and ability to help resolve conflicts within organizational relationships.
  • Emotionally and socially intelligent, culturally sensitive and highly observant/intuitive. Experience and ability to anticipate and meet the needs of the very diverse, deeply politically active groups and individuals OAEC works with and hosts.
  • Proficient with the Google Drive environment (i.e. Docs, Spreadsheets, Gmail, Calendar).
  • Proficient with Mac computers/OS and Office platforms (i.e. Word, Excel, PowerPoint). Other software experience a plus (i.e. Adobe Suite, database systems, project management software).
  • Familiar with or interested in being part of a staff collective. We have a staff-led, distributed authority, consensus-based model of organizational governance.


  • The annual salary for the Retreat and Office Manager is set at $54,000 per year at 40 hours/week. Compensation rates and raises for all staff are set by the OAEC Staff Executive Council, which is elected by the staff collective.
  • OAEC offers health benefits as well as an employee only contribution 401(k).
  • OAEC offers generous paid time off: a total of 5 weeks and 3 days per year of vacation and floating holidays combined, as well as paid sick time off.
  • All staff may enjoy the use of OAEC’s beautiful facilities, including our swimming pond, hot tub and sauna, and wildlands. Staff are invited to harvest from the extraordinary array of organic produce, flowers, and fruit grown in our Mother Garden and orchards.
  • When working on-site, staff may participate in the renowned organic meals prepared for retreats and residents by OAEC’s amazing kitchen staff. Staff may take OAEC courses free of charge, and attend the various theater performances, small concerts, talks and celebrations happening on-site throughout the year. We welcome visits from family and friends.


  • Before applying, please spend some time looking at our website: to better understand what OAEC is and what we do in the world. You might also look at some of our very short videos, including a visual tour of our Retreat Center.
  • OAEC actively seeks a diverse applicant pool and encourages candidates of all backgrounds to apply. OAEC does not discriminate based on an individual’s race, sex, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, medical condition, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or on any other basis prohibited by law.
  • We are accepting applications until 5:00 pm PDT, Thursday, August 26, 2021. Early application is encouraged as applicant screening will begin before the deadline. The Retreat and Office Manager will start on or about October 1.

Qualified applicants should email a cover letter, resume, and list of three to five references to “Hire Manager” at with the subject: “Retreat and Office Manager Position.” Resumes without cover letters will not be considered. Please do not contact OAEC directly with questions or inquiries, but refer to this Job Announcement on the OAEC Jobs web page for information. Thank you!

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