Full-Time Trail Planner or Trail Project Manager
Are you passionate about trails and the many benefits they offer? Are you a successful planner, project manager, or community advocate who would love to use your skills to leave a legacy and help extend and complete the Bay Area Ridge Trail?
The Ridge Trail Council is looking for a dynamic professional to support our Trail program working with partners to plan, build, and open new trail. This position reports to the Deputy Director, works closely with a team of 9 staff and collaborates with park agencies and other partners, stakeholders, and volunteers.
The Ridge Trail Council mission is to plan, promote and sustain a connected hiking, cycling, and equestrian trail on the ridgelines around San Francisco Bay – linking people, parks, and open space for today and future generations. We’re more than two-thirds of the way to our goal, with over 400 miles of the ultimate 550-mile loop now complete.
The Council is a 30+ year stable nonprofit with a professional, well-respected staff, a dedicated and engaged Board of Directors, and an extensive cadre of volunteers. Our office is located within a beautiful coworking space in west Berkeley.
The Bay Area Ridge Trail Council is hiring a Trail Planner (entry/junior level) or a Trail Project Manager (mid-level), depending on prior experience. The successful candidate(s) will play an integral role as part of a small team, and will collaborate on planning and opening new sections of the Bay Area Ridge Trail, most likely in the North Bay (SF, Marin, Sonoma, Napa & Solano counties). Ridge Trail staff work closely with land managers and other partners to promote our shared goal of completing the Ridge Trail. This is an exempt position.
- Support various aspects of trail planning and development, including routing, connectivity and access, shared use, environmental protection, signage, and other issues as appropriate.
- Cultivate relationships with key partners, including park agencies, land trusts, public utilities, private landowners, community organizations, advocates, and others. Regularly meet with partners, stakeholders, and the public.
- Update and maintain custom trail database, GIS, internal documents, and public trail maps.
- Coordinate with consultants to support trail planning and mapping.
- Review & comment on trail plans, design, environmental review, and permitting documents.
- Research, monitor, and maintain information and reporting on critical trail gaps and implement gap closure strategies. Assist in the planning and implementation of trail openings and other events.
- Assist with stewardship or donor cultivation events.
- Support work under grants and special projects.
- Prepare and present written, oral, and technical reports.
- Serve as a Ridge Trail Council ambassador to partners, stakeholders, and the public.
- Other duties as assigned.
Additional Responsibilities – Trail Project Manager
The Trail Project Manager would assume a greater degree of responsibility and independence, including:
- Developing the annual work plan.
- Scope and lead trail planning initiatives and projects. Supervise and manage consultants, including work on trail planning and mapping.
- Assist with fundraising and manage grants and special projects, including review and tracking contracts and budgets.
- Organize trail events, including trail openings.
- Oversee the organization’s GIS and other mapping tools.
REQUIRED EXPERIENCE, SKILLS, AND VALUES
- Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree, preferably in a relevant field of study such as land use, natural resource or community planning, geography, or environmental studies/science.
- Minimum of 1 year of work experience in land use, planning, community organizing, or natural resource management. Familiarity with trail planning and development is preferred.
- Outstanding analytical skills and an ability to manage multiple complex projects.
- Ability to think strategically and formulate creative solutions.
- Strong organization and relationship-building skills.
- Ability to effectively collaborate and communicate with diverse stakeholders.
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
- Proficiency with GIS, Google Earth, or other mapping tools.
- Familiarity with the Bay Area geography, parks, and natural resources preferred.
- Proficiency in Google Workspace or Microsoft Office; database management a plus.
- Ability to excel in a remote work environment and work independently.
- Valid California Driver’s License and access to a car are required.
Additional Qualifications – Trail Project Manager
- Minimum 3 years of related work experience in land use, planning, community organizing, natural resource management, grants administration, or project management.
- Knowledge and experience with trail design, environmental review, and permitting.
- Experience with grant management.
- Experience negotiating, tracking, and managing contracts.
- Experience with park agency, land trust real estate transactions, and trail easements.
- Ability to exercise independent judgment and discretion.
This position operates in a professional office environment. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, and filing cabinets. Some evening and weekend work is required.
The Council is open to flexible arrangements, including varying levels of remote work. Currently, many staff work remotely but are occasionally required to work in the office. The Trail team also regularly meets in person at various locations on the Ridge Trail. The Council also organizes staff outings and hikes throughout the year.
The employee is regularly required to talk, hear, and sit or stand at a desk/computer terminal for extended periods. The employee may be required to transport office products and supplies, or equipment of up to 25 pounds on natural surface trails. The position requires the ability to attend outdoor events and/or activities in varying weather and temperature conditions. Must be able to hike on uneven and/or rugged terrain.
The Council strives to pay competitive salaries within the nonprofit community. Benefits include paid vacation, holidays, sick leave, an organizational rest week, medical, dental, and vision coverage, and 401K. The salary range for the Trail Planner is $55-65K, and for the Project Manager is $65-$80K, based on experience.