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Harpeth Conservancy

Director of Clean Water Protection

Harpeth Conservancy


Job Summary

The position of Clean Water Protection Director will be responsible for leading and managing the public policy work of the organization. This position will be one of the chief strategists in the conservation and environmental policy arena for Tennessee. This position requires someone who likes to solve problems, implement solutions, work with decision-makers, build coalitions, build and work with a network, is familiar with lobbying, and creates and manages issue campaigns effectively.

The successful candidate will have proven experience in conservation/environmental public policy leadership, advocacy, working with community leaders, issue campaign work, and coalition building.  The position requires strong interpersonal skills, a positive attitude, flexibility, the ability to manage multiple priorities simultaneously, and an appreciation for how to bring various perspectives together to solve complex problems that affect communities from agricultural to urban with respect to the environment and public health. The position requires a commitment to understanding and addressing systemic problems that cause environmental inequity and to working with a broad network that incorporates other effective efforts to affect social change to ensure environmental justice for all Tennesseans.   

This position reports to the CEO.

Job Responsibilities

Responsibilities of the position will include, but not be limited to:

  • Work with staff, board, and network of experts to direct, shape, and lead the organization’s policy work for the Clean Water Protection Program, which encompasses our Rural Land Protection and Land Use Program
  • Conduct and oversee analysis relevant to all conservation policy
  • Manage issue campaigns and advocacy efforts with the staff team
  • Be an influential spokesperson and build relationships with decision-makers in local government, state legislature, state agencies, and other partners and entities
  • Provide leadership in shaping conservation policy in Tennessee
  • Lead in building an effective state-wide coalition for conservation and environmental public policy
  • Inspire funders and build financial support for the core policy program work of the organization, including proposal writing
  • Be committed to the values of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice, and be dedicated to creating environmental equity and ensuring environmental justice


Ideal Qualifications:     

  • Master’s degree or law degree and 5 or more years of experience in clean water policy
  • Executive-level experience with natural resource protection, conservation, or environmental action group or organization
  • Exceptional analytical and writing skills
  • Demonstrated success in working with multiple partners, government agencies, local governments, community organizations, and diverse groups
  • Demonstrated success in establishing relationships with individuals and organizations of influence including funders, partner agencies and localities, and volunteers
  • While not required, having networks and/or expertise in Tennessee is preferred
  • Expertise and familiarity with lobbying, campaign management, and advocacy
  • As one of the key external voices for the organization, the candidate needs to possess excellent oral and written communication skills in various formats and be a confident public speaker
  • Must have a genuine love for the outdoors and a commitment to protecting our streams, rivers, and wetland resources
  • Comfortable interacting professionally with all levels of donors, supporters, and volunteers
  • Ability to multi-task and stay calm under pressure
  • Team player and strong time management skills and the ability to meet deadlines
  • Able and willing to work outside of the constraints of a standard work week, as required, including weekends
  • Familiar with Microsoft Office (esp. Word, PowerPoint, & Excel), donor software, social media platforms, advocacy/networking tools, and related software
  • Work style characterized by self-motivation, initiative, and integrity
  • Commitment to the mission of Harpeth Conservancy
  • Must be able to work legally in the United States
  • Ability to work out in the field in rivers, and farmland, be able to travel, and work at events

Additional Information


Salary, Benefits and Work Environment:

The salary base is $85,000 with a range above based on experience. The position is based at our office in Brentwood, TN. A flexible work schedule is expected to accommodate evenings and weekends, travel, and traffic. Harpeth Conservancy benefits include generous paid-time-off, Blue Cross Blue Shield of TN cafeteria health insurance plan with a pre-tax Health Savings Account, and a Simple-IRA retirement plan.

How to Apply

EMAIL: gracestranch@harpethriver.org addressed to Grace Stranch, CEO


  • Date Posted: June 23, 2024
  • Type: Full-Time
  • Job Function: Executive Leadership
  • Service Area: Environment
  • Working Hours: Hybrid Remote, 40 hrs/week