Groovebar Job Opening

David Cassuto

So, if you were looking for a pretty darn cool job, this one might be it.

Director of International Conservation

Location: Washington, D.C.
Supervisor: Senior Vice President for Conservation Programs

Position Description

This management position requires substantial knowledge of international wildlife conservation policy and practice, including marine wildlife conservation; experience in the negotiation and implementation of international agreements; and the ability to direct, manage, and coordinate diverse staff working in the U.S. and internationally.  The position serves as Defenders’ institutional lead on international conservation policy and programs.  The incumbent works with the Senior Vice President for Conservation Programs, International Conservation program staff and other staff members to identify policy goals and set program priorities relating to the conservation of wildlife outside of the United States, and the conservation of marine wildlife in the U.S. and globally.  The incumbent bears primary responsibility for the strategic development of Defenders’ international conservation work and provides programmatic direction and administrative oversight for Defenders’ International Conservation program.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Supervise International Conservation staff and consultants
  • Work with Defenders staff to develop campaigns, programs, and legal strategies that achieve significant on the ground conservation value, and improve the state of international and domestic law relevant to wildlife trade, trade and environment, conservation of biological diversity, and marine conservation
  • Work with Defenders Mexico representative to develop campaigns and projects that improve wildlife laws, increase public awareness of and concern for threatened wildlife and ecosystems, and result in real and substantial conservation benefits for wildlife in Mexico, particularly species also found in the U.S.
  • Coordinate with relevant staff members in other divisions and offices to develop international and marine conservation policy priorities, ensure consistency between international and domestic policies, secure funding for Defenders international and marine conservation work, and increase public awareness of that work
  • Represent Defenders on international and marine conservation issues before federal agencies, international organizations, Congress, other conservation organizations, and other entities as necessary
  • Develop short- and long-range operating objectives, organizational structure, and staffing requirements
  • Develop and recommend departmental budget
  • Provide effective leadership to International Conservation staff.
  • Recommend, review and approve employment actions, including interviewing, hiring, promotions and raises, in conjunction with Human Resources. Partner with Human Resources in the handling of disciplinary issues.
  • Ensure communication of duties and responsibilities to direct reports and monitor performance. Provide regular coaching and counseling. Identify training needs. Prepare and deliver salary and performance reviews; review and approve
  • performance and salary appraisals as necessary.
  • Perform all other related duties as assigned.


  • Education: Advanced degree or equivalent in Wildlife Management or Ecology, Conservation Biology, Natural Resources or related discipline, or law degree, and demonstrated scientific, legal or policy credentials in international wildlife conservation and/or marine conservation.
  • Experience: 7+ years of progressively responsible, substantive experience in directing national/international advocacy campaigns, including 2+ years of relevant management/supervisory experience. Experience developing, implementing, and managing legislative and advocacy campaigns on a national/international level.
    • An equivalent combination of education and experience may be accepted as a satisfactory substitute for the specific education and experience listed above.
  • Other:
    • Strong management, planning, and administrative skills
    • Excellent interpersonal communications and leadership skills
    • Excellent verbal and written communications skills
    • Solid research and media skills
    • Understanding of federal agencies, laws, and policies dealing with use and conservation of natural resources, particularly the Endangered Species Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act, Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species
    • Political experience and sensitivity, including a general understanding of lobbying and federal legislative processes

How To Apply

Interested applicants please reference Director of International Conservation in your subject line and submit a letter of interest, along with your resume and salary history (must be included to be considered) to us via e-mail at:

It is the policy of Defenders of Wildlife to provide equal employment opportunity to all qualified individuals without regard to their race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, or any other characteristic protected by law, in all personnel actions.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: