American Rivers

American Rivers

Posted on Thursday, October 12, 2023

Associate Director for Floodplain Restoration

S Yuba River, California | Photo Credit: Alex Funk

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About American Rivers

American Rivers is championing a national effort to protect and restore all rivers, from remote mountain streams to urban waterways. Healthy rivers provide people and nature with clean, abundant water and natural habitat. For 50 years, American Rivers staff, supporters, and partners have shared a common belief: Life Depends on Rivers℠.

American Rivers centers the ongoing work of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in all that we do. The beauty of rivers is that they connect all people and communities, and we seek to build and embody this diversity in our organization and throughout the conservation field. The life experiences, knowledge, innovation, and talent that everyone brings to our work provides perspectives, experiences, and competencies which are critical to our effectiveness in protecting wild rivers, restoring damaged rivers, and conserving clean water for people and nature.
With a 50 State Floodplain Strategy and Regions across the country, American Rivers’ implements policies that advance responsible river management through practices that reconnect and restore rivers. American Rivers emphasizes the need for projects and programs that address climate change impacts, center communities of color, and protect biodiversity.


The Associate Director of River Restoration will support American Rivers’ efforts to restore rivers and floodplains and advance equitable nature-based flood management solutions. We are looking for candidates who can work with our national Floodplain Restoration program to support organizational goals to restore 20,000 acres of floodplains by 2026, and foster a national community of practice of floodplain restoration professionals; at a regional level to develop and launch a campaign to enable equitable and nature- based floodplain management within the Mississippi River states; and are committed to reducing flood risk for the most vulnerable communities by advancing community-led solutions


  • Coordinate the Natural Floodplain Functions Alliance, American Rivers external floodplain community of practice; and execute an outreach strategy to engage and foster learning among the 2500+ members.
  • Execute American Rivers’ 50 State Floodplain Strategy to advance nature-based and equitable floodplain management in all states and territories by undertaking audits of the 10 Mississippi River states, developing, and implementing state campaigns.
  • Support our Mississippi River Restoration Program, including facilitating floodplain restoration projects and supporting Mississippi River basin initiatives.
  • Facilitate and support the Illinois Floodplain Community Justice Network to build a network of community organizers to advance equitable floodplain management solutions and lead efforts to replicate the Network in Mississippi River states.
  • Effectively communicate floodplain restoration approaches and benefits to a wide array of audiences including Tribes, scientists, community based organizations, landowners, and the public, using a variety of mediums, including but not limited to traditional and social media, public and professional conference presentations, and potentially through published reports or papers. Represent American Rivers at conferences and other events.
  • Be an active teammate with the American Rivers National Floodplain Community of Practice, engaging in team meetings, collaborating with colleagues on project ideas and approaches, working with team leaders to develop, refine, and implement effective restoration strategies, and participating in team retreats and other related activities.
  • Work will involve travel in the Mississippi Region to participate in meetings, site visits, etc., as well as traveling nationally for conferences, trainings, and retreats as needed.
  • Some aspects of the job description may be tailored to fit the specific skills and interests of our selected applicant and may include other duties as needed.


  • Demonstrated commitment to nature-based solutions and diversity, equity, inclusion, and environmental justice.
  • Knowledge of floodplain management and issues affecting the Mississippi River are a plus, dedication to learning these issues is essential.
  • Demonstrated partnership building and/or coalition management experience.
  • A team player with strong interpersonal and leadership skills, as well as the ability to work well with a diverse range of people. Experience working with multicultural communities, including engagement of Tribal nations and organizations, BIPOC, and Latino communities.
  • Strong organizational skills and demonstrated experience meeting challenging project deadlines.
  • Ability to manage budgets and project tasks.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including public speaking and the ability to effectively communicate with partners and agency representatives.
  • Demonstrated strength in critical thinking, judgment, and dependability.
  • Must show initiative, coupled with creative and strategic thinking.
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience in river restoration or an appropriate combination of education and relevant experience in a related field.
  • Four-year college degree in natural resources, public policy, or a
  • relevant field.


Anticipated salary range for this position is $60,000 to $70,000. Full-time and full-time equivalent employee benefits include health, dental and life insurance, short and long-term disability plans, a retirement plan, and generous leave time

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