Hiring: New England Director – American Farmland Trust

American Farmland Trust seeks a dynamic and collaborative self-starter to advance its mission of protecting farmland, promoting sound farming practices, and keeping farmers on the land in the six New England states. The New England Director designs and oversees program and policy activities in the region, manages staff and consultants, and collaborates with a wide variety of agriculture, conservation, smart growth and food systems partners. The position is based out of AFT’s New England Office in Northampton, MA, although alternative locations may be considered. The position requires extensive travel throughout the region.

Duties and Responsibilities:

The New England Director is responsible for the design and implementation of program and policy initiatives at the regional, state, and targeted local levels to advance AFT’s mission and five-year goals and objectives. The Director is expected to play a prominent role in fundraising, in communicating about AFT in the region, and in cultivating and stewarding relationships with AFT members, donors and funders. S/he:

  • Designs and implements programs, projects and initiatives, including policy initiatives and advocacy campaigns;
  • Develops multi-year regional goals and objectives, annual work plans, regional and project budgets, progress benchmarks, and financial reports;
  • Oversees staff, consultants and satellite field offices;
  • Is responsible for regional fundraising and grant writing in coordination with the Vice President for Development and External Relations, and cultivates and manages relationships with current and prospective donors and funding partners in the region;
  • Coordinates the involvement and participation of other AFT divisions in regional activities and initiatives;
  • Uses a variety of tools and platforms to communicate about AFT and its work to partners, members, funders, policy makers and other thought leaders in the region.

The successful candidate will be a charismatic individual who can demonstrate an ability to develop innovative strategies and partnerships to advance farmland protection, land tenure and access, local and regional food systems and environmentally sound farming practices. S/he will be able to articulate a vision around New England’s farmland in the future, and translate that vision into actionable goals and strategies. The Director is expected to work closely with AFT’s Program, Administration and Finance, and Development divisions in crafting well organized, coordinated, managed and funded projects within the region.


The Director must have direct professional experience working with a wide variety of people, organizations and interests on programming and public policy in land conservation and agriculture. These include agriculture and conservation organizations and trade associations, land trusts, state and local elected officials, public agencies, individual donors and foundations, planners and planning commissions, and academic institutions. S/he must have knowledge of New England agriculture and farmland protection. Excellent communication skills and creativity are essential. Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite is required; additional computer skills preferred.

  • A BA or BS degree and a minimum of 8 years of work experience in related fields, such as farmland conservation, agriculture, public policy, land use or natural resource planning – or six years of related work experience with an advanced degree in one or more of the disciplines noted.
  • Demonstrated experience with legislative and/or policy development and advocacy.
  • Previous supervisory experience.
  • Demonstrated project and budget management experience.
  • Experience managing complex projects and multiple partners.
  • Proven fundraising track record.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience and background. Full benefits package.

To apply, send letter, salary requirements, and resume by December 1, 2015 by email.

American Farmland Trust provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Farmland Trust complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the organization has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

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