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The South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL – pronounced “circle”) was founded in 1983 by grassroots activists determined to protect the South Yuba River from dams. Ultimately, SYRCL won permanent protection for 39 miles of the South Yuba River under California’s Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. SYRCL works on behalf of the Yuba River watershed on a range of issues related to ecosystem health and the watershed as a whole.
SYRCL is founded on the premise that “People can save a river.”
SYRCL’s diverse programs and work therefore mirror the interconnected nature of water and ecosystems, both natural and human made. Together, we are extending our powerful coalition from the Sierra to the sea. Today, SYRCL is the central hub of community activism to protect, restore, and celebrate the Yuba River watershed. With almost 40 years of achievements, 3,500 members and 1,300 active volunteers, SYRCL is doing great things for the Yuba watershed. We advocate for free-flowing rivers and oppose unnecessary new dams. We work to save wild salmon and healthy ecosystems by restoring mountain meadows and salmon habitat in the lower Yuba River. We inspire activism across the globe with our environmental film festival. We house the Yuba River Waterkeeper program, connected to the national Waterkeeper movement. Additionally, SYRCL founded and continues to operate and grow the nationally recognized Wild & Scenic Film Festival and On Tour program.
SYRCL is a financially sustainable non-profit organization with a year-round staff of 25. The organization is based in Nevada City, California, a charming foothill town on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, with an impassioned sense of community. Guided by our mission to “unite the community to protect and restore the Yuba River watershed,” our organizational vision and values direct our work.
The Executive Director is responsible to the Board of Directors for management of the entire non-profit organization including fundraising/development, human resources, strategic planning, program delivery, finance, communications, and community engagement.
The Executive Director cultivates SYRCL’s mission and vision through personal leadership and advances the mission through outstanding programmatic and advocacy efforts at the watershed, state, and sometimes national level. The Executive Director publicly represents the organization to government agencies, partners, community, and the media.
As a leader, the Executive Director strives for transparency and consensus in decision-making, and is committed to an organizational culture of inclusion, openness, and personal initiative. Staff are expected to operate with the highest degree of integrity, responsibility, creativity, and professionalism; the Executive Director is responsible for both fostering and embodying these values to ensure the health and effective performance of the organization.
SYRCL’s mission is to “unite the community;” thus, the Executive Director plays a key role in engaging and empowering community members, volunteers, partners, agency staff and elected officials to work together to protect the watershed.
NOTE: THIS POSITION IS BASED IN NEVADA CITY, CA. THE SUCCESSFUL CANDIDATE WILL NEED TO BE PRESENT IN THE OFFICE MOST DAYS.
For more information, please visit www.yubariver.org.
This position reports to the Board of Directors.
- Salary range is $105,000-$135,000
- Benefits include:
- PTO: 14 days per year on an accrual basis, 10 paid holidays and 3 sick days
- 100% employer paid health insurance
- 2% 401(k) retirement match (fully vested after 3 years)
- The opportunity to fiercely advocate for the ecosystem health of the Yuba River Watershed in partnership with a deeply committed and closely connected activist community
- An experienced, innovative, and strategic visionary who can inspire a range of audiences while boldly and strategically identifying opportunities for expansion and refinement with our mission at the core
- A results-driven leader who will embrace and expand strategic goals, set priorities, delegate responsibilities, demonstrate accountability, allocate resources to produce results and reflect organizational values
- Accomplished and compassionate with a deep commitment to building authentic, sincere relationships with staff, Board, donors, funders, partners, volunteers, community members, and other key stakeholders
- In possession of a hands-on, “boots on the ground” mentality and lead by example with humility and a sense of humor
Leadership & Vision
- Seek new opportunities for SYRCL’s visibility through developing partnerships and participating in coalition-led efforts.
- Serve as an effective and visible spokesperson for SYRCL, effectively articulating the mission, vision, and values as well as all SYRCL is accomplishing, maintaining consistent and compelling messaging to internal and external stakeholders, partners, the media, and the public.
- Lead, manage, and nurture SYRCL staff.
- Lead staff and Board through final steps of the current Strategic Action Plan and launch efforts to commence new plan. Note that the current 5-year plan expires at the end of 2023.
- Establish, foster, and maintain excellent relationships with local government and community partners.
- Continue SYRCL’s commitment to ensuring the organization is approaching its work through a lens of Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI).
- Support the Board of Directors and Board Committees ensuring that the Board has all necessary information and resources to conduct its business.
- Work with the Board President to coordinate Board meetings, prepare agendas for the meetings, and develop staff reports and other supplemental documents.
- Participate in the Board, Community Advisory Board and Executive Committee meetings.
- Collaborate with the Board to refine and update SYRCL’s multi-year Strategic Plan. Note that the current 5-year plan expires at the end of 2023.
- Launch efforts to commence work on a new strategic plan.
- Provide regular reports to the Board on SYRCL’s financial standing, fundraising activities, and progress towards meeting programmatic strategic objectives.
Revenue Generation & Fundraising
- Foster a healthy culture of philanthropy where Board members, staff, volunteers, and donors understand and embrace the role charitable giving has in ensuring resources to fulfill the mission.
- Create opportunities for Board and staff to meaningfully participate in the fundraising process.
- Lead fundraising efforts to achieve annual goals set in the budget; work closely with Development Director to develop and implement a fundraising plan.
- Take personal responsibility for recruiting and stewarding major donors, grantors, and members.
- Play an active, leading role as a primary solicitor of funding from institutional and individual donors.
Finance, Operations & Management
- Ensure SYRCL’s financial health through continuous oversight and gidance; oversee preparation of the annual budget and financial reporting to the Board of Directors; ensure that no undue financial risks are taken; have decision-making authority in financial matters; work with the Treasurer,
- Finance Director, and Development Director to run monthly Finance and Fundraising Committee meetings.
- Ensure policies and procedures are updated as needed and in compliance with all regulatory requirements.
- Manage and develop the Leadership Team overseeing SYRCL’s various programs including Watershed Science, Community Engagement, Communications, Education, Policy, Development, Finance/Operations, and the Wild & Scenic Film Festival to maximize interdepartmental coordination and collaboration.
- Manage, nurture and empower SYRCL’s staff by supporting an organizational culture which attracts, sustains, supports, develops, and motivates highly committed and talented staff.
- Develop and update appropriate personnel policies and procedures for staffing, compensation, and annual performance reviews. Approve the hiring, and termination of all personnel as needed.
- Assure efficient and proper interactions with SYRCL’s external human resources contractor.
- Minimum of seven years of leadership experience with a track record of achievements; preferably with significant program operations in the environmental field
- Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university; advanced degree preferred in environmental policy, law, natural resource management, river ecology or related field
- Demonstrated understanding of California water policy, water law, and river ecology
- Experience lobbying with lawmakers at the federal and state level
- Demonstrated success in managing multiple departments and annual organizational budgets greater than $5 million
- Strong communication, written, verbal, and presentation skills
- Demonstrated experience with skilled staff and board management
- Demonstrated ability to perform efficiently under specified timeframes and with the highest possible standards for quality work, including simultaneously managing and prioritizing a diverse array of projects and tasks
- The ability to speak clearly and be understood by others is required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions
- Sincere passion for the mission and vision of SYRCL
To apply for this position, or for additional information on the opportunity, please click "Apply" below to send a copy of your resume with a cover letter to Victoria Silverman. All applications and inquiries will receive a response and be kept strictly confidential.
At South Yuba River Citizens League we value diversity — in backgrounds and in experience, and we need people from all backgrounds to achieve our mission of uniting the community to protect and restore the Yuba River so people and nature can thrive. SYRCL’s team is empathetic, caring, and supportive. We are intentional about the team and culture that we are building, seeking team members who are not only strong in their own aptitudes but care deeply about supporting each other’s well-being and growth.
SYRCL is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race (including traits historically associated with race, such as, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles like braids, locks, and twists), color, religious creed, gender, genetic information, genetic characteristics, gender identity, gender expression, transgender status, religion, marital status, military status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, sexual orientation, or any other consideration made unlawful by federal, state or local laws. Women, BIPOC, LGBTQIA+ people, and members of other historically disenfranchised populations are strongly encouraged to apply. All of our employees’ points of view are key to our success, and inclusion is everyone’s responsibility.”