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The Nature Conservancy

Great Plains Division Director

The Nature Conservancy


Job Summary

Who We Are:
The Nature Conservancy’s mission is to protect the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that we can create a world in which people and nature thrive. We’re rooted in our Mission and guided by our Values, which include a Commitment to Diversity and Respect for People, Communities, and Cultures. Whether it’s career development, flexible schedules, or a rewarding mission, there are lots of reasons to love life #insideTNC. Want a better insight into TNC? Check out our TNC Talent playlist on YouTube or on Glassdoor.  

Our goal is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that all our colleagues around the globe feel a sense of belonging, and that their unique contributions to our mission are valued. We know we’ll only achieve our Mission by hiring and engaging a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we work. In addition to the requirements in our postings, we recognize that people come with talent and experiences outside of a job. Diversity of experience and skills combined with passion is a key to innovation and a culture of inclusion! Please apply – we’d love to hear from you. To quote myriad TNC staff members, “You’ll join for our mission, and you’ll stay for our people.”

What We Can Achieve Together:
The Great Plains Division of the North America Region includes eight programs (Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota/North Dakota/South Dakota, Missouri, Nebraska, Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma) with a combined annual budget of approximately $65 million, 316 staff, and annual fundraising in excess of $50 million.  The Division Director facilitates cross-boundary approaches to significant conservation outcomes that have a tangible, lasting impact on the environment and the people who rely on it. Together, the Division develops and advances innovative solutions that address the systemic root causes of the challenges facing nature and people.

Job Responsibilities

We’re Looking for You:
Are you looking for work you can believe in? At TNC we strive to embody a philosophy of Work That You Can Believe in and where you can feel like you are making a difference every day. We’re looking for someone with strong experience in leading a diverse, multi-disciplinary team.

The Division Director (“Director”) is the senior conservation leader and manager for the Conservancy’s Great Plains Division of the North America Region.  They will lead the Division (made up of state programs, or “Chapters”) to advance The Nature Conservancy’s highest priorities through the Shared Conservation Agenda, develop and ensure execution of project plans, raise funds, engage volunteer trustees across borders, and develop emerging leaders.  The Director adds value by building and leading highly effective, nimble, teams that deliver tangible results at a significant scale.

The Director exercises collaborative leadership to engage and execute across geographic (e.g., other Divisions, North America Region, Global) and programmatic boundaries and cultivates mutually beneficial agreements and relationships.  They foster alignment, teamwork, collaboration, innovation, cooperation, team spirit, and synergy amongst the divisional leadership team. The Director invites and engages the differences each person has and leverages them for greater outcomes.  They promote inclusion, a diverse workforce, diversity of thought, and shared ownership and commitment to the organization’s highest priorities. 

The Division Director holds the authority and is ultimately responsible for the financial performance and effective administration of the programs and projects within the Division.  The Director actively manages the performance of Business Unit (BU) Leaders and holds them accountable for conservation and fundraising goals, compliance, and risk management.  The Director works with BU Leaders to allocate financial and human resources across the organization by approving budgets and advancing organizational priorities that dictate private and public fundraising goals.  They work closely with Chapter trustee/advisory boards to advance The Nature Conservancy’s strategies.

As one of the leading conservation spokespeople for the Conservancy, the Director fundraises with public and private donors and ensures that sufficient resources are available to achieve the Conservancy’s organizational goals. They represent the Conservancy internally and externally to an array of communities, partners, policymakers, and other audiences, advocating for and raising the visibility of The Nature Conservancy.  The Division Director reports to the North America Region Managing Director and is a member of the North America Council (NAC).  As such, the Director plays a significant role in the strategic direction of the North American region. 

Success in the position will be demonstrated by:

 Staff across the Division has shared ownership of TNC’s Shared Conservation Agenda and is effectively collaborating to deliver maximum conservation impact and in achieving TNC’s 2030 Goals
Continually increasing commitment of both division and regional resources (people and funding) to TNC’s priority conservation strategies and outcomes

An engaged and diverse workforce in division and region (measured by Our TNC survey engagement scores and diversity statistics)
Increasing funding for strategies that advance TNC’s Global priority conservation outcomes


What You’ll Bring:


  • Bachelor’s degree, plus 12 years of senior-level experience in natural resource conservation, or equivalent experience.
  • Experience in leading and managing a large multi-disciplinary team, including managing senior-level leaders.
  • Experience leading others through change and a general openness and comfort with accepting change.
  • Experience in evaluating and/or negotiating complex, high-profile, or sensitive contracts and agreements.
  • Experience working with a variety of political, business, not-for-profit, and environmental sectors and with varied local communities in the North American region.
  • Experience communicating with and presenting to diverse audiences including donors, board members, employees, outside partners, members of government, or equivalent.
  • Experience in fundraising, including the cultivation of major donors.
  • Fluency in English; excellent written and oral communication skills.


  • Graduate degree in business, law, natural resource management, or other relevant field.
  • Experience working with Tribal Nations.
  • Experience in DEIJ, equity, or other related work.
  • Understanding of the political environment of the Great Plains region.
  • Nonprofit experience appreciated.
  • Multi-lingual skills are appreciated.

What We Bring:
Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has been doing work you can believe in protecting the lands and waters that all life depends on. Through grassroots action, TNC has grown to become one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff, we impact conservation throughout the world!

The starting pay range for a candidate selected for this position is generally within the range of $250,000- $286,000 for annual base salary. Where a successful candidate’s actual pay will fall within this range will be based on a variety of factors, including, for example, the candidate’s location, qualifications, specific skills, and experience. Your geographic location will be confirmed during the recruitment.

This description is not designed to be a complete list of all duties and responsibilities required for this job.


  • The Division Director can be based in any major TNC Office located within the Division.
  • Willingness to travel frequently, at least 50% of the time, often on short notice.
  • Work requires only minor physical exertion and/or physical strain.  The work environment involves only infrequent exposure to disagreeable elements.

The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and cultures. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientations, gender identities, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to applyhelp@tnc.org with a Request for Accommodation in the subject line.

Additional Information


The Nature Conservancy offers a competitive, comprehensive benefits package including health care benefits, flexible spending accounts, 401(k) plan including employer match, parental leave, accrued paid time off, life insurance, disability coverage, employee assistance program, and other life and work wellbeing benefits. Learn more about our benefits in the Culture Tab on nature.org/careers

We’re proud to offer a work environment that is supportive of the health, well-being, and flexibility needs of the people we employ!

How to Apply

Please apply to Job #55167 at www.nature.org/careers, or apply directly here.  Submit the required cover letter and resume separately using the upload buttons.  Click “submit” to apply for the position or “save for later” to create a draft application for future submission. Once submitted, applications cannot be revised or edited. Failure to complete the required fields may result in your application being disqualified from consideration. If you experience technical issues, please refer to our applicant user guide or contact applyhelp@tnc.org.


  • Date Posted: May 22, 2024
  • Type: Full-Time
  • Job Function: Executive Leadership
  • Service Area: Environment