Niobrara Valley Preserve Stewardship Manager

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Johnstown, Nebraska, USA


The Nature Conservancy’s mission is to protect the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that we can create a world in which people and nature thrive. We’re rooted in our Mission and guided by our Values, which includes a Commitment to Diversity and Respect for People, Communities, and Cultures. Whether it’s career development, flexible schedules, or a rewarding mission, there’s lots of reasons to love life #insideTNC. Want a better insight to TNC? Check out our TNC Talent playlist on YouTube or on Glassdoor.

Our goal is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that all our colleagues around the globe feel a sense of belonging, and that their unique contributions to our mission are valued. We know we’ll only achieve our Mission by hiring and engaging a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we work. In addition to the requirements in our postings, we recognize that people come with talent and experiences outside of a job. Diversity of experience and skills combined with passion is a key to innovation and a culture of inclusion! Please apply – we’d love to hear from you. To quote myriad TNC staff members, “you’ll join for our mission, and you’ll stay for our people.”


The Niobrara Valley Preserve encompasses approximately 56,000 acres along a 25 mile stretch of the Niobrara River in north-central Nebraska. This portion of the Niobrara River is designated as a Wild and Scenic River. Management of the Preserve includes woodland management, grazing by two resident bison herds (1000+ animals) and cattle grazing through lease arrangements. Ecosystems on the Preserve include Sandhills and Dakota mixed-grass prairie, tallgrass prairie, bur oak savanna, ponderosa pine savanna, deciduous woodland, and others.

We manage The Niobrara Valley Preserve to promote biological diversity, mitigate climate change and influence land stewardship around Nebraska and beyond. We encourage staff to find creative and innovative approaches to reach those goals and to help translate lessons learned to a broad variety of audiences.

The Niobrara Valley Preserve Stewardship Manager (NVPSM) develops and implements land management strategies at the Preserve, including prescribed fire, grazing by both cattle and bison, and invasive species control that build and sustain biological diversity. Collaborating with other staff, the NVPSM also works to influence land management outside Preserve boundaries by testing new ideas, capturing lessons, and sharing those with other land managers, landowners, and natural resources professionals. The NVPSM supervises other stewardship staff, including them in management decisions and delegating responsibilities to optimize their effectiveness.

The NVPSM is responsible for the development and negotiation of cattle and hunting leases for the Niobrara Valley Preserve, as well as for the management of the two bison herds. They also oversee the maintenance and repair of all infrastructure related to land stewardship at the Preserve, including, but not limited to, fences, livestock water facilities, equipment, vehicles, and buildings.

The NVPSM collaborates with other TNC preserve stewardship and fire staff elsewhere in Nebraska, sharing resources and assistance when necessary. They will assist other staff in developing and managing budgets, contracts, and grants related to land stewardship projects at the Niobrara Valley Preserve. In addition, the NVPSM collaborates with TNC science and outreach staff, helping to accommodate research projects, build demonstration projects, and communicate with various audiences regarding land management and The Nature Conservancy’s goals and strategies. The NVPSM works in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain, and under physically demanding circumstances.

The location for this position is in a rural part of north-central Nebraska near Johnstown, along the northern edge of the Nebraska Sandhills.


If you’re looking for a career where you can find meaning and purpose, come join our Chapter as the Niobrara Valley Preserve Stewardship Manager! Not only will you fulfil conservation objectives in the beautiful state of Nebraska, but you’ll contribute to conservation goals through many networks!

We’re looking for a passionate, dedicated person to help lead our Chapter and work within our Division. Systems Leadership, creativity, and the ability to influence without authority are key in this role. Come join TNC and apply today!


  • Bachelor’s degree and 3 years experience in natural resource management or a similar field or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience managing staff or volunteers.
  • Relationship-building experience in working closely with a variety of partners, i.e., media, government officials, and internal scientists.
  • FFT2 fire certification or ability to achieve certification.
  • Experience completing tasks independently with respect to timeline(s).
  • Experience with communication via written, spoken and graphical means in English.
  • Experience using common software applications such as Word, Excel, web browsers, etc.
  • Experience in training.
  • 3-5 years’ experience in natural resource management.
  • Experience managing cattle grazing by cattle and/or bison.
  • Experience in prescribed fire management.
  • Experience developing land management plans that promote biological diversity and ecological resilience.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with a broad variety of audiences.
  • Knowledge of current trends and practices in conservation, land management, and ecology of grasslands and woodlands.


Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has been doing work you can believe in protecting the lands and waters that all life depends on. Through grassroots action, TNC has grown to become one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff, we impact conservation throughout the world!

The Nature Conservancy offers a competitive, comprehensive benefits package including: health care benefits, flexible spending accounts, 401(k) plan including employer match, parental leave, accrued paid time off, life insurance, disability coverage, employee assistance program, other life and work wellbeing benefits. Learn more about our benefits at in the Culture Tab on

We’re proud to offer a work-environment that is supportive of the health, wellbeing, and flexibility needs of the people we employ!

This description is not designed to be a complete list of all duties and responsibilities required for this job.


This position requires a valid driver's license and compliance with TNC’s Auto Safety Program. Employees may not drive Conservancy-owned/leased vehicles, rental cars, or personal vehicles on behalf of the Conservancy if considered "high risk drivers." To learn more about the Auto Safety Program, visit under the FAQ section.

Employment in this position will be contingent upon completion of a Vehicle Use Agreement, which may include a review of the prospective employee's motor vehicle record.


The starting pay range for a candidate selected for this position is generally within the range of $46,800 - $54,720 for annual base salary. This range only applies to candidates whose country of employment is the USA. Where a successful candidate’s actual pay will fall within this range will be based on a variety of factors, including, for example, the candidate's location, qualifications, specific skills, and experience. Please note countries outside the USA would have a different pay range in the local currency based on the local labor market, and not tied to USA pay or ranges. Your geographic location will be confirmed during the recruitment.


To apply for job ID 54636, submit your materials online by using the Apply Now button at Need help applying? Visit our recruitment page or contact position will close on Friday, February 16, 2024 at 11:59 EST

The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

The successful applicant must meet the requirements of The Nature Conservancy's background screening process.

Do you have military experience? Visit our U.S. Military Skills Translator to match your military experience with our current job openings!

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to with Request for Accommodation in the subject line.

An attractive salary and benefits package is part of TNC’s value proposition to our employees. TNC strives to provide competitive pay and bases salaries on the geographic location of the role committing to being equitable across groups and providing hiring salary ranges when possible.

Since we support flexible and remote work for our employees, many positions have a flexible location within countries where we’re registered as a Non-government Organization and established as an employer. This may mean we’re unable to provide a hiring salary range in the posting for some of our positions. However, candidates invited to be part of our interview process will be provided their location specific range upon request.