Natural Resources Defense Council is hiring a
NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) is one of the most effective and influential environmental organizations in the United States and around the world.
It is guided by the understanding that protecting the planet is about protecting people – our health, our communities, and our economy. At the core of its mission is a simple idea: A healthy environment should be a basic right for all of us – regardless of where we live, what we look like, or how we vote. And NRDC is relentless in its commitment to defending that right.
Today, the organization is working to achieve a vision of a more inclusive, sustainable, and prosperous world – one in which we are standing up for climate, nature, health and equity.
To meet our most pressing environmental challenges, it is building and scaling solutions to fight climate change; protect endangered species and the wilderness; eliminate toxic chemicals in the air, food, and water; advance more sustainable cities; and engage millions of people in the movement for a healthier world.
NRDC’s unique approach combines the power of law, science, policy, and public engagement to create solutions for lasting change. On any given day, it takes polluters to court. It publishes ground-breaking scientific research. It advocates in city halls, statehouses, and government chambers. NRDC works alongside communities to make them healthier and more resilient. It activates public pressure to make government officials and corporations do the right thing. NRDC works across the globe, with a particular focus on the United States, China, and India. Today, this mix of strategies is more critical than ever before.
There is unprecedented urgency to act on climate change, as people across the world are increasingly suffering from its consequences – from record heat, drought, and wildfires to hurricanes and flooding. Recent scientific reports from the world’s leading experts tell us that we are in a “code red” for climate change, with a narrowing window to act before its worst impacts are unavoidable. We are also at risk of losing one million species to extinction if drastic efforts are not taken to address the destruction of our natural world. Finally, this is all taking place at a time when inequality between and within countries remains dire as COVID-19 continues to disrupt our lives and further entrench disparities. It is an all-hands-on-deck moment to tackle the climate, biodiversity, and inequality crises.
The challenges ahead are significant – but they are exactly the types of challenges NRDC was born to face. NRDC has played a key role in nearly every major environmental victory in the United States over the past 52 years. For more five decades, it has stood up to polluters and held our leaders accountable for what they do, or fail to do, to protect the environment and people’s health.
More recently, it was at the forefront of the green resistance to former president Trump – filing 136 lawsuits against his administration with an astonishing success rate of more than 90 percent. Just this past year, NRDC played a key role in helping to pass the Inflation Reduction Act—the strongest climate action in U.S. history. And through a robust city, state, and regional structure it is advancing climate solutions outside of Washington, helping to pass strong climate legislation even in Republican-led states like North Carolina. NRDC is targeting the primary source of climate pollution – the fossil fuel industry. It is expanding opportunities for nature-based climate solutions through improved agricultural practices and forest conservation. And it is growing and strengthening the movement, enlisting a new generation of younger and more diverse activists, and strengthening partnerships with communities on the frontline of environmental hazard and harm.
NRDC is an environmental powerhouse, and the past decade has marked enormous growth for NRDC, in its size, influence, and impact. In 2020, it had revenues of $213 million, net assets of $398 million, and the support of more than three million members and online activists joining in its fight to protect the planet. The organization now operates from the following hubs: Bozeman, Montana; Chicago; Los Angeles; New York City; San Francisco; Washington, D.C.; Beijing; and New Delhi. And it has a staff of more than 750 people, all of whom share the values that drive NRDC’s work: A high standard of excellence; a tenacious spirit; the unwavering pursuit of justice; a desire to learn, adapt, and innovate.; and a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
As has always been the case, NRDC’s success is built in large part on its ability to adapt to changing circumstances and maximize opportunities for progress. Even in the unprecedented years of the pandemic that challenged staff in unimaginable ways, both personally and professionally, the organization shifted to remote working without missing a beat – advancing its advocacy goals while meeting, and often surpassing, its fundraising targets.
As NRDC embarks on its next 50 years, it is poised to lead the movement for decades to come. It is charting the course for the transformational change we need to build a clean, healthy, just, and prosperous world for all people.
The institution’s continued success will require visionary and action-oriented senior leadership that harnesses the limitless talents of the organization and drives a global movement toward the progress we must achieve. In Manish Bapna, NRDC’s president and CEO, the organization benefits from leadership that is laser-focused on building partnerships and platforms for transformational change and delivering impact at scale. His proven track record in developing policies and programs to address the twin challenges of climate change and inequity helps NRDC achieve ambitious climate action.
Science Office Overview
The Science Office’s mission is to ensure that NRDC’s work to safeguard the earth is grounded in scientific principles and understanding. The office drives, shapes, and supports our ability to advance bold climate action and social justice, protect public health, preserve wild spaces, and build a strong environmental movement. Our goal is to bridge the gap between science, and the people, communities and ecosystems it serves.
NRDC is looking for a Chief Science Officer (CSO) to join our team of passionate environmental advocates. This is a unique opportunity for an experienced leader to help shape organizational strategy, systems and structures to address the climate challenge as part of a still-forming leadership team. The role provides significant organizational leadership in strategy and policy development; promotes public understanding and engagement with science; positions NRDC as a scientific hub and a strategic contributor to the global climate agenda; and advances NRDC’s commitment to community advocacy, diversity, inclusion, equity, and justice.
Reporting to our new Chief Capacities Officer, the CSO will lead the vision for science at NRDC and have strategic and operational responsibility for further developing and expanding NRDC’s Science Office as the scientific and evidence-based nucleus that forms and informs all strategy and advocacy. They will mentor and guide scientific talent within the organization and ensure there is a supportive community of practice that elevates and integrates our work across NRDC and among the external scientific community.
The Chief Science Officer will approach situations with a collaborative spirit and embrace solving complex and nuanced problems with a scientific, evidence- and equity-based approach. They will be a strategic thinker and relationship builder with excellent influencing and communications skills. The CSO will be an established and credible scientist with deep ties in the global scientific community. The CSO is excited about being the chief storyteller and champion of science; serving as an external spokesperson to represent our science-based strategic vision and elevate our scientific reputation and profile.
Strategy Development, Institutional Leadership, and External Relations (60%):
Internal Management (40%):
NRDC is committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, both in our work and in our workplace. We believe that celebrating and actively welcoming diverse voices and perspectives is essential to solving the planet's most pressing environmental problems, and we encourage applications from candidates whose identities have been historically under-represented in the environmental movement.
We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law. Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.
We offer competitive salaries, excellent benefits, and a supportive working environment. Salary is based on a nonprofit scale and is commensurate with skills and experience. For this position, the salary is $250,000 to $300,000. Internal equity considerations will be reviewed before making a final offer.
Since March 2020, NRDC’s offices have been closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. You will be associated with one of our offices, but until circumstances allow us to re-open, we will continue to support NRDCers with remote working arrangements.
As a science-based organization, NRDC aims to do our part to help contain the COVID-19 public health crisis. For the sake of health, safety, and equity, we ask that people be vaccinated unless they have an approved medical or religious accommodation or other exemption in accordance with state and local law. We consider a person to be vaccinated two weeks after receiving one full course of a CDC-approved vaccine. In accordance with state or local law, new hires will be asked to attest to vaccination, those wishing to do so may request medical or religious accommodations or other exemptions via NRDC Employee Relations. NRDC treats all vaccine-related data confidentially, in keeping with local, state, and federal laws.
To apply, visit www.nrdc.org/careers and upload your résumé and cover letter. Please mention where you saw this posting and upload any additional materials that showcase your abilities. Due to the high volume of applications, we will contact only those candidates we would like to interview. Please no phone calls, emails, or in-person résumé drop-offs.
If you experience technical problems while applying or if you are a person with a disability and need assistance applying online, please reach out to iCIMS Customer Care at 1-800-889-4422.
For more about NRDC, visit www.nrdc.org.
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