We're Hiring a Land Steward

Join our team as a Land Steward!

The McKenzie River Trust (MRT), an Accredited Land Trust based in Eugene, Oregon, is seeking a full time Land Steward to join our team. The Land Steward will work with MRT and partner organization staff and volunteers to sustain land and water conservation benefits across a range of MRT projects and partner initiatives.  Based primarily in the field, the Land Steward will manage protected lands, monitor and document the effectiveness of restoration actions, help assess new project opportunities, and contribute to landscape-scale conservation initiatives through the Trust’s service area.

To Apply:

Please prepare a resume and cover letter (no longer than 2 pages each) describing your interest addressed to Eli Tome, Director of Conservation. Send that letter and a resume, both in pdf format, via email to jobs@mckenzieriver.org and include Land Steward in the subject line of the email. You can download the full position description by clicking the button below, or read further for details. 

Hiring Timeline and Process:

This announcement was posted April 8th, 2022 and is open until filled. The first round of applicants will be reviewed the first week of May, and applicants will be notified of the next steps in the review process beginning May 6, 2022.

The Hiring Manager and one other hiring committee member will independently score qualified and highly qualified candidates using a hiring matrix. Once all qualified applicants are scored, the hiring committee will compare applicant scores and address any significant discrepancies in scoring. The top tier of applicants will move forward through the hiring process, including a phone interview/screening, a zoom interview, and an opportunity to gather with other MRT staff members in person. There may be a writing sample required as part of the interview process. MRT hiring processes can take up to two months, the Hiring Manager will keep applicants informed of the process throughout. All non-successful applicants will be offered an opportunity to speak with a member of the hiring committee for feedback on their application if requested.

Position Title: Land Steward

Reports to: Stewardship Manager

Status: Full-time, exempt

Compensation: $40,000 – $45,000 annual salary

Benefits: Supportive benefits package including employer-paid health, dental, vision, short term disability, and life insurance. MRT offers a competitive PTO package starting at 3 weeks of paid vacation, 2 weeks of paid sick leave, and 10 floating holidays per year. MRT offers a Simple IRA retirement benefit with up to a 3% employer match contribution.

Summary of Position:

The McKenzie River Trust (MRT) Land Steward will work with MRT and partner organization staff and volunteers to sustain land and water conservation benefits across a range of MRT projects and partner initiatives.  Based primarily in the field, the land steward will manage protected lands, monitor and document the effectiveness of restoration actions, help assess new project opportunities, and contribute to landscape-scale conservation initiatives through the Trust’s service area.

Key Responsibilities:

The Land Steward will carry out land stewardship and monitoring activities for habitat restoration and management, provide public access management, and support community engagement goals. Work plan elements vary across seasons but will include the following:

Land and Easement Stewardship (65% FTE)

  • Manage stewardship and property maintenance needs for MRT-owned properties.
    • Safely operate and maintain machinery (ATV, spray trailer, weed-eater, chainsaw, tractor, & skid-steer), hand tools, data gathering technology, and other equipment
    • Identify and record non-native plant species
    • Mechanical control of invasive species (using a variety of methods: weed-eater, hand tools, tractor, mower, etc.)
    • Chemical control of invasive species:  applying herbicides safely and effectively, according to labels, laws, and best practices to achieve restoration objectives
  • Assist MRT staff by providing oversight to volunteers, interns, work crews, contractors, and seasonal staff as delegated.
  • Manage public access facilities as assigned.
  • Manage and monitor native plantings, including
    • Establishment of native trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants
    • Irrigating native trees and shrubs (utilizing industrial-scale aluminum hand line, wheel line, and gun with traveler)
  • Monitor conditions of lands protected with conservation easements, providing landowner assistance, and facilitating positive landowner relations.
    • Recording monitoring visits in Salesforce LOCATE app on mobile phone or tablet from the field
  • Support the creation of property condition assessments, baseline documentation reports, and land management plans including the collection of field data, writing, and soliciting team input for their creation.
  • Complete riparian/stream habitat assessments

Internal Organization Support and External Partnership Development (25% FTE)

  • Accurately record and enter stewardship and volunteer data into MRT Salesforce LOCATE Database.
  • Support MRT’s community outreach events, and natural history tours.
  • Collect field observations and high-quality photos for reporting, communications, and member outreach.
  • Follow McKenzie River Trust’s policies and procedures and support and participate in MRT’s Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion training and efforts.
  • Participate in organizational planning efforts including strategic planning and work plans.

Administrative and Fiscal Responsibilities (10% FTE)

  • Complete expense reports, collect, review and submit invoices for payment: accurately record and code time and mileage reports.
  • Actively participate in teams, all-staff meetings, training, and participate in MRT staff committees as directed
  • Manage budgets and work plans for properties in assistance with Stewardship Manager and Director of Conservation.
  • Assist in grant writing and fundraising efforts as directed.
  • Other duties as assigned.



Skills, Knowledge, and Experience Required:

  • Minimum 2 years’ field experience in ecological land management
  • Familiarity with principles of ecology, habitat restoration and management, floodplain dynamics, and climate change adaptation/resiliency.
  • Working knowledge of flora, fauna, and hydrology of the region.
  • Computer proficiency in word processing, database, spreadsheet applications, and mapping software.
  • Willingness to work occasional weekends and evenings.
  • Ability to walk a minimum of one mile over rough terrain, navigate in remote areas, and work independently under physically demanding conditions, including inclement weather (position will be field-based approximately 65% of the time).
  • A valid driver’s license, proof of insurance, and a good driving record.

Working Conditions and Physical Effort:

The Land Steward will work across field sites primarily in Lane County and from an office base in Eugene, Oregon. Many tasks will require significant physical exertion, being outdoors in all weather conditions and on difficult and sometimes hazardous terrain. Some occasional weekend and/or evening work will be necessary. MRT service area includes the McKenzie, Upper Willamette, Siuslaw, Umpqua, and Pacific Frontal watersheds from the mouth of the Umpqua River north to Lincoln City. Travel throughout this service area will be a regular course of business. MRT has a fleet of 3 vehicles (trucks) for use and offers mileage reimbursement at State Government rates for personal vehicle use. This position will be required to tow large equipment on MRT trailers on occasion, transporting skid steer and other large equipment between MRT managed properties (training will be provided).

The McKenzie River Trust is committed to cultivating an inclusive work environment and providing equal opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, age, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic disposition, neurodiversity, disability, veteran status or any other protected category under federal, state and local law. In accordance with the American with Disabilities Act, requirements may be modified to reasonably accommodate disabled individuals. However, no accommodations will be made which may pose serious health or safety risks to the employee or others or which impose undue hardships on the organization. The McKenzie Trust maintains its status as an at-will employer.

Organizational Background

Since 1989, the McKenzie River Trust (MRT) has helped people protect and care for the lands and rivers they cherish in western Oregon. From the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean, MRT envisions a future in which conservation lands are at the core of community efforts to sustain clean water, abundant fish and wildlife, and diverse natural resource economies. We work at the intersection of ecological systems and human community needs to ensure the health of both in the face of changes in climate and land use. MRT protects over 7,000 acres of land through ownership and conservation easement. Grounded in science, we work collaboratively to heal, restore, and enhance regionally important natural systems, and connect people to places they care about. MRT is based in Eugene, and our work is centered in the upper Willamette River Basin, but we also carry out work in the Umpqua, Siuslaw, and coastal river basins. In 2021 we opened our first field office on the central Oregon coast.

On Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice:

Having invested in staff training in Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice (DEIJ) for several years, we are currently crafting a DEIJ commitment statement and plan. For over 30 years, the McKenzie River Trust (MRT) has pursued our mission by focusing on habitat diversity and health, river dynamism, and wild landscapes. But we need to more explicitly acknowledge that people and communities have been and continue to be part of these ecosystems, and that the helping people part of our mission compels us to ensure that our work benefits and engages all people, not just some. Bringing DEIJ values to bear in our work will support us in maintaining the landscape-scale vision required to address climate resilience and community resilience as we work to maintain the ecological integrity of western Oregon’s landscapes. We have work to do. We encourage all candidates, particularly those with diverse backgrounds in culture, education, and professional experience, to apply for this position. 

Applicants’ materials are redacted for personal information to reduce bias by hiring managers. Please do not reach out directly to MRT staff members, allow us to contact you regarding the next steps in the hiring process.