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11 Dec 2023

Full-Time Project Manager, Cooler Pilot, Business & Innovation

California FarmLink – Posted by CaFarmLink Aptos, California, United States

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Job Description

Status:  Full Time
Reports to:  Senior Program Manager, Business & Innovation
Supervisory: N/A
Primary Office:  Aptos
Salary:  $75,000 to $100,000 commensurate with experience

Job Summary

Join California FarmLink! As a Community Development Financial Institution, we invest in the prosperity and well-being of farmers, ranchers, and fishers who have limited access to financial resources. Our programs center communities of color, and promote just and resilient economies and natural resource conservation. We offer fair financing, business education, and support for owning or managing agricultural land.

Our Lending Program provides access to credit. Our three Land and Business programs provide technical assistance and business education. The Business and Innovation program provides farmers, ranchers and fishers with technical assistance and pilots new programs to further FarmLink’s mission.

The Project Manager, Business & Innovation will lead the work of a multi-year pilot project to  demonstrate the feasibility of solar-powered cooler infrastructure. Participating farmers will acquire small-scale on-farm cold storage, to keep produce fresh, attractive, and nutritious longer, allowing farmers to manage their time more effectively and sell their products at higher prices in markets farther from their fields.

Our goal is to create a replicable model for refrigeration that is cost-effective and climate-smart, using innovative, on- or off-grid solar power. Small-scale, post-harvest solar cooling and battery storage have the potential to expand rapidly. We believe this is a wonderful opportunity for a motivated individual to influence a nascent field.

Flexible employment arrangements may be  offered depending on circumstances.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities

With the supervision and close mentorship of the Program Director:

  • Work directly with primarily Spanish-speaking farmers to make them aware of the opportunity and evaluate their operation for suitability to participate in the pilot project
  • Work with other FarmLink staff to make final determinations about which farmers will be given the opportunity to participate in the pilot
  • Work with a cross-department team to develop  the conditions and agreements for farmers to be accepted into and continue to participate in the program
  • Develop and oversee a quarterly monitoring and compliance process
  • Develop written guidance with options, costs, and recommendations to determine the best options for various  circumstances and condition

For each participating farm:

  • Work with the farmer(s) and project team members to evaluate and select the best  cooler and related power options and costs
  • Assess permitting options and costs
  • Assess site options and costs including wash water, drainage, and other food safety and quality considerations
  • Ensure all necessary permits and licenses are obtained for installation and operation of cooler units
  • Manage the installation of infrastructure, including managing  relations with and between the farmer and the various contractors

Leading a cross functional core team, plan, organize, and manage all phases of the project ensuring that the project is delivered on time, within scope, and within budget

  • Take ownership and responsibility for issue management, risks, decisions, and the overall success of a project with internal and external (suppliers) teams
  • Coordinate internal resources and third parties/vendors
  • Assess project issues and identify solutions
  • Ensure all project-related documentation and deliverables are documented
Required Qualifications
  • Spanish language fluency
  • Self-motivated, independent-minded person able to process personal, managerial, and technical information
  • Ability to organize, educate, and support mostly Spanish-speaking farmers so they are active participants  and obtain real value from the project
  • Demonstrated ability to meet budget and project deadlines
  • Bachelor’s degree in engineering, economics, agriculture, or related field
  • 3+ years of project management experience
  • Proficiency with  MS Word, Excel and Google Suite tools
Desired Qualifications
  • Cultural competencies for working  with Latine farmers
  • Project Management Professional  certification
  • Knowledge of agricultural business models, particularly for fresh produce, post-harvest handling and refrigeration
  • Experience working with county agencies in the planning and permitting process
  • Hands-on experience with mechanical systems, refrigeration, post harvest handling, and solar experience
  • Ability to work under pressure of many priorities and deadlines and to manage short-term and long-term projects simultaneously
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, comfortable working with people of varied cultural backgrounds
  • Excellent organizational skills, well disciplined, able to meet deadlines, self-starter
  • Knowledge and experience using customer relationship management (CRM) software, Salesforce preferred  Salesforce

How to Apply

Please use subject line “Project Manager” to email a thoughtful cover letter explaining your interest in the position and organization, along  with your resume to: [email protected].  No phone calls please.

Posted November 21, 2023; applications accepted until December 15 , 2023 with an anticipated start date of January 1, 2023.

For more info, and to learn about California FarmLink’s commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: https://www.californiafarmlink.org/about-us/our-values#dei-principles

Job Categories: Sustainable Agriculture / Food. Job Types: Full-Time. Salaries: 80,000 - 100,000.

Job expires in 3 weeks.

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