Job Posting: Program Associate

About Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters
Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters (Friends) was established in 2017 as a citizen conservation nonprofit working to preserve and protect the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality, and distinctive cultural resources of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument (the monument) and surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of all generations. In partnership with the National Park Service (NPS), Friends provides a direct way for the public to participate in the continuing stewardship of Maine’s newest park by providing a measure of excellence that can augment and complement NPS management and funding.

Friends’ education program, the Katahdin Learning Project nurtures connections between learners and land in Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and the surrounding communities. Through guided visits to the national monument and visits to schools across the region, our programs focus on local ecosystems, history, and culture. We work closely with NPS staff at the national monument, a strong team of volunteers, and a variety of community partners to deliver our programs and connect with youth around the region.

Position Description
The Program Associate works as part of a small, dynamic, and fast-growing team of board, staff, partners, and volunteers to design and lead educational programs; support relationship building, day-to-day operations, and communications for the Katahdin Learning Project; and support Friends’ development efforts by writing grants and coordinating/leading trips, hikes, and programs for Friends’ supporters.

This position works under the supervision of Friends’ Education Director. Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is undertaking a deliberate, year-plus long transition to a teams-based model and as such the Program Associate will frequently report to designated Team Leads across the organization.

This position will be joining an organization that is in the midst of accelerated growth from the start-up phase to the growth phase. As such additional responsibilities and professional growth are potential opportunities within this position. Candidates who feel they would appreciate the core duties and see the potential for growth, perhaps beyond the core duties, are encouraged to apply.

Core Duties of Program Associate

  • Develop knowledge and understanding of Maine’s Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and surrounding communities.
  • Katahdin Learning Project (education programs) (65%):
    • Collaborate with the Education Director to carry out the goals and objectives of the Katahdin Learning Project’s recently adopted three-year strategic framework and resulting annual plans
    • Lead research, creation, and delivery of educational programs for youth of all ages on local plants, animals, ecosystems, history, culture, and more in consultation with the Education Director, program partners, and when applicable, National Park Service staff
    • Support the Education Director in the work to implement place-based projects throughout the Katahdin region
    • Maintain and build relationships with teachers, students, and community partners across the region through one-on-one meetings and presentations at regional meetings/gatherings
    • Follow-up with teachers and students to gather feedback after programs
    • Communicate with teachers and program leaders interested in participating in Friends education programs
    • Maintain organization of Katahdin Learning Project program administration including shared google drives, photo drive, and program tracker
    • Collaborate with volunteers and maintain communication before and after activities and events
    • Participate in planning and organization of annual events and professional development opportunities and manage youth involvement in events alongside other Friends staff
    • Support operations of youth trail crews working in the national monument through local partnerships
  • Development and Grants (25%):
    • Collaborate with grants team to seek funding for education programs and Friends operations
    • Provide feedback and edits on drafts of grant submissions
    • Research potential funding opportunities
    • Lead and coordinate hikes, trips, and other programs for Friends members, donors, and community members alongside Friends staff and volunteers
  • Communications (10%):
    • Design print and digital promotional materials for education programs and events
    • Manage outgoing virtual communications from education program through social media and through email/newsletters


  • Strong commitment to public lands and the natural, recreational and cultural features of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument
  • Experience creating and leading programs on flora, fauna, ecosystems, history, and/or culture
  • Experience working in both indoor and outdoor environments with youth of a variety of ages
  • Self-motivated with the desire to take on a variety of diverse projects
  • Team player who can work independently as well
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills, attention to detail, and organization
  • Passion for outstanding physical and digital organization

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience collaborating with community partners
  • Experience working in rural communities facing economic barriers
  • Experience working with tribal communities
  • Familiarity with Maine state educational standards
  • Current Wilderness First Aid certification
  • Current Maine Guide license
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office (especially Excel and Word) and Google Suite
  • Proficiency with Adobe Creative Suite (especially InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop) or other graphic design software

Location and Travel

Friends maintains an administrative office in Portland and is exploring opening a second administrative office in the Katahdin region. This position will be based in the Katahdin region (Millinocket through Island Falls), and travel to other locations within Maine is an occasional requirement of this job. Remote work is possible many days of the week, though, this position will require dedicated office time and time in the field. The employee must maintain a reliable car and valid driver’s license.

Hours and Benefits

Health, dental, vision, sick time, Paid Time Off (“PTO”), and SIMPLE IRA retirement benefits are offered to all full-time Friends employees. This is a salaried full-time position with some work on nights and weekends required. The annual salary range from this position is $36,450 and $45,000, based upon experience. We aim to have the Program Associate start in early August 2021.

Please submit a cover letter, resume, and three references to Kala Rush, Education Director, with the subject line “Program Associate”. The priority deadline for applications is July 12, 2021.   

Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate in employment against persons based on color, race, religion, age, ability, gender, familial status, sexual orientation, national origin, veteran or marital status.