Conservation Project Manager

Posted Date: September 5, 2023

Position Closing Date: Open until filled, early applications encouraged

Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado

Employment Status: Full-time, Exempt

Salary Hiring Range: $55,000 – $67,000 DOE

Position Summary

Join the dynamic, fun team at Palmer Land Conservancy and contribute to meaningful work including the permanent protection of land and building a stronger community through conservation. The Palmer work environment attracts independent, savvy individuals who enjoy its work flexibility, generous benefits, strong values, and inspiring culture.

Palmer seeks a qualified and motivated individual to join our team to assist in developing and implementing strategic, innovative, and lasting conservation projects throughout the region. The Conservation Project Manager (CPM) will serve as the internal transaction lead on a portfolio of acquisition projects, and will support the Land Team on larger-scale conservation projects as needed. The CPM reports to the Conservation Director (CD) and works as a part of a team to ensure Palmer’s mission is fulfilled to the highest standards. In addition to the specific responsibilities, skills, and qualifications outlined below, the candidate should be able to work effectively in a small staff environment that is focused on achieving high conservation impact and should possess the enthusiasm and flexibility to help a fast-growing organization thrive.

About Palmer Land Conservancy

Palmer Land Conservancy is one of the leading nonprofit land conservation organizations in Colorado. Since its incorporation in 1977, the organization has protected more than 138,000 acres including 20 public parks and open spaces, working farms and ranches, critical water resources, wildlife habitat, and scenic views. Palmer is one of the twenty largest local land trusts in the country based upon conserved acreage holdings (there are approximately 1,700 land trusts in the United States), and it is one of the country’s first 100 nationally accredited land trusts. Its main office is located in downtown Colorado Springs and has staff located throughout its service area. More info at

Core Responsibilities

Conservation Easement Transaction Management (95%)

  • Working under the CD, manages the transaction process for all conservation easements within CPM’s portfolio, ensuring all activities are completed in a timely manner, and reviewing all due diligence items (appraisals, baseline documentation reports, mineral reports, environmental assessments, title documents, closing documents, and others as applicable).
  • Hires and manages consultants and vendors to support transactions with a variety of expertise such as appraisals, surveys, legal advice, baseline documentation reports, and environmental assessment.
  • Works with the Finance Director to ensure timely invoicing and payment for acquisition activities.
  • Assists CD with negotiations, review, and drafting transactional and legal documents, including conservation easements.
  • Ensures acquisition records are properly created and maintained in accordance with LTA accreditation and Palmer policies and procedures.
  • Ensures that all land conservation transactions within CPM’s portfolio are adequately documented and transferred to the Stewardship Program post-closing, including completion of the due diligence memo, database management, file organization, and other applicable items.
  • With the CD, identifies sources of project-specific funding from public agencies, private foundations, and other sources; assists with the preparation of grant applications and associated budgets.
  • Stays informed on current state-of-the-art legal, technical, and pragmatic best practices for conservation acquisitions of all kinds.
  • Working with the CD, ensures Palmer’s Land Program is at the forefront of the industry by assisting in the identification of efficiencies and technological advances that streamline record-keeping, land acquisitions, policies and procedures, etc.

Administrative & Other (5%)

  • Abide by and uphold all Palmer policies and procedures, LTA Standards and Practices, and any other industry best management practices.
  • Participate in staff meetings, Land Committee meetings, events, and board meetings where necessary. Prepare materials for board approvals and updates.
  • Contribute to the development of Palmer Land Conservancy print and online materials.
  • Other duties and special projects as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Minimum 3 years’ demonstrated experience working on complex projects, conservation real estate transactions, or other relevant work experience.
  • Must be a self-starter who is well-organized and able to make decisions based on analysis, experience, and judgment and have the follow-through necessary for conservation real estate transactions.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and the ability to convey complex concepts to a lay audience.
  • Must be able to work in a fast-paced environment to meet established goals and deadlines while juggling multiple and competing projects and priorities.
  • Demonstrated commitment to a collaborative approach to solving problems.
  • Ability to work independently, self-motivate, as well as manage time, work hours, expenses, mileage driven, and coordinate multiple activities while delivering quality results.
  • Willingness to work a flexible schedule with some evening and weekend hours to meet deadlines and accommodate landowner schedules.
  • Experience in record keeping and data management with the ability to use and manage databases and other industry-specific computer software (Microsoft Word and Excel, Adobe, databases)
  • Must possess a valid driver’s license and be willing to travel frequently and use personal vehicle, as necessary, in the performance of work-related activities - travel expenses will be reimbursed.
  • Ability to hike, perform physical activities, and work independently outdoors in varied weather conditions and in remote and rugged landscapes.
  • Must be committed to the organization’s conservation mission and be willing to contribute to maintaining a collegial, efficient, and ethical working environment with staff, Board, and others. Being a good fit for the culture at Palmer is important for the team.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in relevant field (land conservation, natural resource management, environmental law, real estate, etc.)
  • Experience working with conservation easements, land trusts, and natural resource management
  • Ability to use and manage GIS software and datasets (ArcGIS)

Salary & Benefits

Salary range is $55,000 – $67,000 DOE. Palmer offers full time employees excellent benefits including: employer paid health, dental, and vision insurance, short-term and long-term disability, life insurance, paid parental leave, generous paid time off, and flexible work arrangements. The position is based out of Palmer’s Colorado Springs office located in beautiful downtown, and in close proximity to ample recreation and open space opportunities.

How to Apply: The position is open until filled. Early applications are strongly recommended. Applicants should submit 1) a cover letter, 2) resume, 3) list of three references, and 4) answers to the questions below (all as a single pdf) by e-mail to: [email protected] with the subject line: Conservation Project Manager. References will not be contacted unless you are selected for a final interview.

Please limit responses to no more than 200 words per question:

  1. Why does conserving land, water, and nature in southern Colorado matter to you?
  2. Please describe your experience relevant to the position’s core responsibilities.
  3. Why are you interested in working for Palmer and where do you see yourself in 5 years?