Applications are invited for the position of Executive Director of the Dunes Learning Center in Chesterton, Indiana. Dunes Learning Center (DLC) is a non-profit residential environmental education facility in partnership with Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, a unit of the National Park Service. Its primary audiences are schools throughout Northwest Indiana and the Chicago Metropolitan area. Its mission is to provide learners of all ages an in-depth exploration of the dynamic relationship between people and their environments using the natural and cultural resources of the Indiana Dunes region where nature and society co-exist. DLC was founded in 1998 and has an annual budget of approximately $1,000,000. For more information, please visit

DLC seeks an experienced and accomplished nonprofit leader to contribute to the overall growth and development of this exciting and fun environmental education center for youth by developing and expanding the DLC programs, activities and partnerships to meet the visions and goals implicit in the mission. Working both with internal and external constituencies, the Executive Director is expected to strategically maintain and expand the Center’s enterprise and to collaboratively plan for its future. The Executive Director serves as the chief administrative, fiscal and operations officer for all the functions of DLC. The Executive Director’s primary responsibility is the administration of the overall business and operations of Dunes Learning Center in accordance with the mission and goals and in compliance with the procedures, policies and protocols set forth by the Board of Directors. The Executive Director is responsible to the Board of Directors and serves as ex officio member of all Board committees. The Executive Director shall attend all meetings of the Board and of the Executive Committee of the Board. Essential functions include leadership & administration, personnel management, board relations, fiscal management, fundraising, and communications. The position is an exempt, full-time position that includes health and insurance benefits. Duties may involve weekend and evening hours.

The ideal candidate will evidence the following qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s Degree required; Masters or PhD preferred, in Education, Environmental Education, Interpretation, Environmental Science, Business or related field
    • 5 years demonstrated success in staff leadership and administrative/supervisory experience
    • 3 years successful experience as a professional in environmental education and/or a closely related field, or experience with non-profit organization
  • Ability to effectively communicate Dunes Learning Center’s mission, goals and programs effectively and with the highest professional standards
  • Strong writing skills and demonstrated success in grant proposal development
  • Demonstrated fundraising and donor relations/development record of success
  • Demonstrated financial management skills
    • Demonstrated comfort and skill in public speaking.
      • Strong planning, organization, time management, communications and multi-tasking skills.
        • Capacity to work easily and effectively with a wide range of people, build relationships, be diplomatic
      • Willing to work outside of regular business hours on an as needed basis.
        • Microsoft Office proficient, i.e. Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc.

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. For full consideration, please submit materials before December 23, 2012. All inquiries, nominations/referrals, and applications (including resumes and letters of interest) should be sent electronically and in confidence to:

Katha Kissman
DLC Search Consultant

The Dunes Learning Center is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate based on race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, nationality, alienage or citizenship status, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, disability, veteran status, or any other protected status under controlling federal, state or local law.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.