About Living River Trust
Along the Elizabeth River, multiple tributaries, and amidst the urban centers of southeast Virginia, Living River Trust is doing the vital work of saving the last remaining open spaces in South Hampton Roads. With only 10% of land in the Elizabeth River watershed left undeveloped and significant development and redevelopment pressure, the urgency and importance of our work is great.

We are the first local and the only urban land trust headquartered in South Hampton Roads. In the last 10 years, the Trust has conserved more 1,100 acres along the Elizabeth River. While not a large amount in absolute terms, this conservation value is unique in a watershed that is largely built out with port-related, commercial, industrial, military and residential land uses. Our efforts are ensuring precious public access to the river, protecting water quality, clean water supplies at the headwaters, pioneering the protection and/ or re-development of small urban parcels of green waterfront, and identifying innovative solutions for waterfront neighborhoods vulnerable to flooding and sea-level rise.

The Living River Trust grew out of an agreement in 2003 between the Elizabeth River Project, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District. Under that agreement, the Living River Trust continues to clean up polluted Elizabeth River sediment to meet developers’ needs to offset environmental impacts from permitted dredging or filling projects.

Our dual role of protecting open urban land and restoring contaminated river bottom positions the Trust as a true difference maker now and for years to come.

The Opportunity

As the Executive Director you will lead what is best described as a start-up conservation land trust with a rich, well-funded history as a mitigation organization. You will bring an entrepreneurial spirit to build on the strong foundation already in place and help lead LRT in the future.

The South Hampton Roads area is one of the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the country and the development pressure in the region is intense. The Living River Trust is focusing on conserving smaller and medium size parcels and high priority land at risk from development.

You will:
– Collaborate with a board of twelve to set vision, policy, and strategy for the organization.
-Enhance existing and develop new synergies with the Elizabeth River Project to further shared goals of both organizations.
-Work in partnership with private landowners, community conservation groups, and intergovernmental partners to acquire and conserve priority conservation lands.
-Develop a fundraising development plan and establish short/long range goals to expand donor base, by harnessing the abilities and interests of donors, funders, and stakeholders.
-Work collaboratively and inclusively with internal and external stakeholders to imagine possibilities, solve problems, innovate, set goals and expectations to shape the future and ensure the ongoing health of the organization.
-Lead and support a team to meet expectations, goals, and strategic outcomes.
-Ensure the organizations long-term financial health by providing timely, accurate and comprehensive financial information, systems, policies, and procedures.
-Pursue and obtain Land Trust Alliance accreditation status.
-Assist the board with analysis and long-range planning, to grow Living River Trust as a non-profit, independent from the Elizabeth River Project, including incorporation and governance structure.

To read the full position announcement and instructions on how to apply, please visit: