Title:  Director of Programs 

Location: Hybrid: at least one day a week in Bethesda office is required; this role also will require regular time at project sites throughout Rock Creek Park and other regional locations

Reports to:  Executive Director 

Type: Full-time


Position Overview

The Conservancy seeks a skilled leader to manage a diverse team that engages the Rock Creek community on a variety of forest, parks, and watershed projects and programs, focused on people-powered restoration to build a community of stewards engaged in Rock Creek. Working with a talented team of program staff, the director sets priorities, monitors progress towards strategic plan goals, adaptively manages programs as needed, and contributes directly to program activities. The director supports fundraising efforts for these programs. More detailed responsibilities follow. 


Desired Qualifications

  • 7-10 years of professional experience in resource management or environmental programs, particularly related to urban forests, parks, and/or watersheds
  • Familiarity with DC-area forest, parks, and watershed issues and opportunities 
  • Great project management skills, including time management, goal-setting, multitasking, and prioritization with demonstrated success managing multiple tasks concurrently 
  • Strong cultural competency, experience working with and engaging diverse staff and community members, and commitment to an inclusive and accessible Rock Creek
  • Experience managing salaried and hourly staff
  • Bachelor’s degree in related field; advanced degree preferred
  • Ability to travel throughout the Rock Creek watershed for programs and to work occasional evenings and weekends


To Apply Rock Creek Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer. Please send resume and cover letter to info@rockcreekconservancy.org with the position and your name in the subject line. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis after December 1. Rock Creek Conservancy offers a competitive benefits package; salary range for this position is $85,000 – $105,000.      


About Rock Creek Conservancy: Rock Creek Conservancy is a watershed organization protecting Rock Creek and the philanthropic and stewardship partner to the entirety of Rock Creek (National) Park. The Conservancy’s mission is to restore Rock Creek and its parklands as a natural oasis for all people to appreciate and protect. 


Position Details 


Rock Creek Conservancy works to improve and protect the resilience of forests in Rock Creek Park and throughout the watershed by planning for long-term restoration and management of the park’s forests, with an emphasis on direct invasive plant removal. Working through the Senior Forest Resilience Manager and Community Engagement Coordinator, responsibilities include: 

  • Implement annual Weed Wrangle
  • Recruit, train, manage, and support Weed Warriors and Weed Warrior Leaders in mini-oases and collaborate with NPS staff to support the overall Weed Warrior program 
  • Develop a comprehensive framework for Rock Creek Park’s forest resilience and build a plan for its implementation in 2023; subsequently, oversee implementation beyond
  • Manage restoration in about 12 acres of parkland through the mini-oasis projects
  • Support advocacy for forest protections throughout the watershed
  • Engage community members as stewards of Rock Creek’s forests within and beyond park boundaries 



As the only philanthropic and stewardship partner to the entirety of Rock Creek (National) Park, the Conservancy builds capacity for Rock Creek by engaging thousands of volunteers in hands-on service and engagement events each year. The program director supports the Executive Director in managing this partnership and takes the lead on implementing the relationship with the NPS volunteer team. While almost all Conservancy programs intersect with the park partnership, this focal area includes the following, with implementation through all teams, including the Senior JEDI Initiatives Manger, JEDI Community Engagement Coordinator, and JEDI VISTA (an AmeriCorps volunteer): 

  • Manage the Carter Barron Alliance to revitalize this signature park resource
  • Engage community members in learning about and building their capacity to discuss topics related to Race, History, and Rock Creek, including providing content expertise 
  • Build on the Recreate Responsibly efforts to empower all park visitors to protect the park’s resources through community-based social marketing and physical infrastructure to facilitate visitors’ use
  • Provide threshold experiences for community members newer to Rock Creek, including Summer in the Parks
  • Implement MLK Day service activities 
  • Build the next generation of Rock Creek stewards through programs like the Rock Creek Conservation Corps 
  • Support advocacy efforts to ensure resources for Rock Creek’s parklands 



Rock Creek Conservancy works to improve the health of the Rock Creek watershed by advocating for policies and programs to reduce effective impervious surface, managing a range of programs to increase adoption of or to maintain green infrastructure, and engaging community members in activities throughout the Rock Creek watershed. Working through the Community Engagement Coordinator and Senior Green Infrastructure Coordinator, responsibilities include: 

  • Implement annual Rock Creek Extreme Cleanup
  • Recruit, train, manage, and grow dozens of volunteer Stream Team Leaders to lead litter cleanups and encourage stormwater reduction
  • Support and grow community science efforts to understand and track the health of the Rock Creek watershed
  • Recruit, train, manage, and grow dozens of volunteer Stream Team Leaders to lead litter cleanups and encourage stormwater reduction
  • Support and grow community science efforts to understand and track the health of the Rock Creek watershed
  • Implement green infrastructure maintenance efforts as part of a District-wide partnership 
  • Implement the Downspout Disconnection program
  • Lead organizational efforts to improve policies regarding stormwater in DC and Montgomery County, including participation in the Stormwater Partners Network


The director will also undertake other duties as assigned, and monitor program impact to determine alignment with the Conservancy’s strategic plan. As needed, the director will develop new programs or initiatives and support fundraising efforts for all programs.