Save the Dunes, a non-profit conservation organization in northwest Indiana seeks a motivated, versatile,
professional individual for full-time position as Land and Advocacy Specialist. Candidate must be proficient in using
ESRI ArcView ® Software and GoogleEarth ®. Seeking an individual with exceptional organizational and
communication skills, and ability to conduct research and write news briefs about a wide variety of environmental
advocacy issues. Must be comfortable speaking in public. The Land and Advocacy Specialist provides support to the
Executive Director and applies mapping expertise, research and communication skills to achieve organizational

This is a grant-funded, one-year position that may be extended should additional funding be secured. Responsibilities include:

  • Developing, organizing and maintaining a GIS database.
  • Working with Save the Dunes staff, board, members, and the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore to map out boundary expansion and/or buffer needs to protect the national park.
  • Interviewing land trusts in Northwest Indiana to assess their vision, goals, focal areas, and strategy for the next several years. Also, assessing overlap between organizations. Summarizing information into a final report.
  • Coordinating and assisting a newly-forming land trust coalition in Northwest Indiana. This includes arranging meetings, setting agendas, documenting minutes, and following through on requested research, data entry, and real estate efforts.
  • Meeting with natural resource managers at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Indiana Dunes State Park, local land trusts, etc., to discuss needed ecological buffers. Such buffers would help prevent invasive species inflows and improve management of both the National Lakeshore and State Park.
  • Updating and maintaining all information pertaining to properties and conservation easements owned or
  • managed by Save the Dunes. Conducting site visits and monitoring reports of all our parcels.
  • Assisting with various efforts of the Save the Dunes Land Committee, including property research, real estate efforts, mapping, mailings, and more.
  • Following through on projects as assigned by the Executive Director on a wide variety of environmental advocacy efforts. It is not expected that the candidate would be an expert in these issues, but be able to delve into complex research efforts to assist with our activism.
  • Representing Save the Dunes at public meetings and testifying on our behalf at public hearings on various environmental advocacy matters.
  • Writing press releases, eNews briefs, and newsletter articles about our work. May also be organizing content and overseeing print and distribution of two newsletters.
  • Updating and managing our website content.
  • Carrying out a wide range of logistical and planning tasks as assigned for our 2012 60th Anniversary special event in October.
  • Maintaining precise records of activities, time, expenses, receipts, and invoices by project.
  • Applying for grants and evaluating grant funding opportunities and engaging with funders as appropriate.
  • Compiling grant quarterly reports, reimbursement requests, budget updates, and final reports for existing grants.
  • Helping with other duties as assigned by the Executive Director, which may include, but not be limited to general office tasks (e.g. filing, mailings, returning calls), attending and reporting on meetings, fundraising efforts and networking events.
  • Actively sustaining the position by identifying, investigating, communicating, and pursuing funding opportunities for projects that further our land, advocacy or fundraising goals in cooperation with the Executive Director.
  • Occasional evening and weekend work may be required.Minimum Qualifications
  • Bachelor’s Degree in geography, natural resource management, environmental science, environmental or public
  • policy, or related field.
  • One full year of experience of GIS mapping experience.
  • Valid driver’s license.

Minimum Skills

  • Position requires a detail-oriented individual with strong administrative and record-keeping skills.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including ability to give presentations.
  • Good understanding of environmental sciences and natural resources.
  • Interest in environmental issues and policies.
  • Experience with GPS units and GIS software; proficiency in ESRI ArcView ®, GoogleEarth ®, Microsoft Office Word®, Excel® and PowerPoint®; and other basic computer applications. Willingness to learn to use Constant Contact®.
  • Basic math and accounting skills.
  • Capability to carry out responsibilities independently and dependably to complete projects with accuracy and  thoroughness.
  • Ability to work with diverse partners and to resolve conflicts in a professional manner.
  • Additional Preferred Skills
  • Experience writing grant proposals, managing grant-funded projects, and tracking budgets.
  • Understanding of real estate transactions.
  • Understanding of environmental laws and regulations related to land, air and water in Northwest Indiana.
  • Past involvement in non-profits or community organizations.
  • Physical Requirements and Working Conditions
  • Viewing computer terminal, perceiving and transcribing data with accuracy, and keyboarding.
  • Communicating with telephone callers and associates.
  • Occasionally walking long distances and spending extensive time outdoors in a variety of weather conditions.
  • Occasionally standing for sustained periods of time.
  • Ascending and descending stairs daily.
  • Occasionally lifting of up to 30 lbs.


  • Salary range is between $28,000 to $30,000 dependent upon qualifications.
  • Modest health reimbursement package available after 90-day probationary period; retirement benefits may be available should funding be secured to extend employment beyond one year.

Equal Employment Opportunity

  • In order to provide equal employment and advancement opportunities to all individuals, employment decisions at Save the Dunes will be based on merit, qualifications, and abilities. Save the Dunes does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
  • Save the Dunes participates in the E-Verify Program, an Internet-based system that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States.

To Apply

Mail resume and letter of interest no later than Friday, January 20th, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. Central Time to:
Save the Dunes
Attention: Nicole Barker
444 Barker Road
Michigan City, IN 46360
or e-mail with subject line “Land and Advocacy Specialist” to
No phone calls please.

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