Director,Conservation Planning and Evaluation



Washington, DC, USA
Posted on Thursday, April 25, 2024


The Director, Conservation Planning and Evaluation, is a thought-leader and works to position the Foundation as reference in the field of environmental planning and evaluation, and the convener of choice in the conservation community. Under the leadership of the Chief Conservation Officer, the Director is responsible for working with the Foundation’s staff and Board, federal agencies, and other conservation partners to update and implement an outcome-based investment and impact monitoring and evaluation framework, strategy, and business system for the Foundation’s conservation programs. In collaboration with other members of NFWF’s Science and Evaluation team, the Director will serve as a spokesperson and will work to advance the Foundation’s conservation planning and evaluation activities.

The Director will work to ensure that the Foundation’s core portfolio of programs is designed to achieve long-term impact with measurable outcomes. The Director will serve as a catalyst within the Foundation to create new combinations of people, processes, methodologies, and ideas that will lead to efficient and effective approaches to planning and measuring the outcomes of the Foundation’s conservation programs by working with partners to create a strong culture of conservation impact assessment “on the ground.” The Director will manage and oversee the work of the Conservation Planning and Evaluation team and will work closely with Science and Program staff to develop and institutionalize standardized monitoring and evaluation protocols to evaluate our grantmaking impact and deliver measurable outcomes in accordance with the Foundation’s vision and strategic plan.


Institutionalizing Planning and Evaluation into NFWF Processes
  • Through engagement with staff and key partners, update and build planning, and evaluation as core components of NFWF grantmaking to achieve and measure conservation outcomes.
    • Lead the Conservation Planning and Evaluation staff to update the Foundation’s conservation strategy framework, business planning processes, and goal development, making them more adaptable to change and emerging opportunities, while remaining outcome focused.
    • Work with Data Science to develop, implement, and refine NFWF’s evaluation and monitoring strategy to ensure we have standard processes for measuring progress across multiple scales of grant making and for providing quality information for both program improvement and accountability purposes.
    • Build Foundation staff and grantee understanding and capacity for using monitoring and evaluation as a tool for learning and adaptive management.
    • Improve integration of planning, assessments, evaluation, and scorecards.

Oversee Business Planning

  • Lead coordination of major business planning decisions and timelines with the Chief Conservation Officer, Regional Directors, and Board of Directors.
  • Support the Staff Scientist-Planning and Evaluation in facilitating the design and development of programmatic business plans that achieve broad support by the relevant conservation community and are adaptable to emerging needs and opportunities while still including the core components of an effective initiative plan: conservation goals, strategies, assessment of risks and measures of progress.
  • Increase efficiency of business plan implementation to ensure that NFWF priorities remain relevant and impactful, and plans are nimble enough to capitalize on new opportunities that align with goals for conservation outcomes.
  • Support Data Science in their efforts to develop internal data collection and reporting systems for more efficiently compiling, aggregating, and disseminating project and program outcomes to both internal (staff, Board) and external (funding partners, grantees, etc.) audiences.
  • Support the Staff Scientist-Planning and Evaluation to facilitate the development and oversight of monitoring and evaluation plans for guiding and tracking progress towards business plan conservation goals.

Lead and/or Oversee Analyses, Assessments, and Evaluations

  • Lead the Science & Evaluation and Program staff in the development of an updated evaluation framework that is more efficient and aligned with current needs and resources for oversight and adaptive management.
  • Prepare and/or assist in the preparation of various descriptive and evaluative reports and work with appropriate NFWF staff to help incorporate findings into future organizational and program improvements.
  • Oversee and collaborate with the Staff Scientist-Planning and Evaluation on internal assessments of targeted conservation programs as well as cross-program priorities to inform future decision-making and assist in the development of program action plans to respond to assessment recommendations.
  • Oversee the development and implementation of third-party evaluations.
  • Contribute to team effort by offering information and opinion and accomplishing special projects as needed.
  • Conduct site visits in accordance with Foundation policy.

Share Learning

  • Foster NFWF as a thought leader in the field of conservation planning and measurement.
    • Share NFWF’s planning processes and system for Foundation-wide monitoring and evaluation with external partners and prospective funders.
    • Disseminate results and lessons learned from NFWF assessments to various internal and external audiences.
    • Respond to requests for planning and evaluation assistance from key federal, corporate, or foundation partners as time permits.
  • Communicate with Foundation staff and Board regarding assessments of our conservation impact to ensure strong understanding and use.
  • Assist in the preparation of briefing materials and recommendations to support decision making by the Foundation’s Board.
  • Represent the Foundation at appropriate meetings, conferences, etc., including the Conservation Measures Partnership and American Evaluation Association.


  • Manage Conservation Planning and Evaluation staff to support the Foundation’s core business planning, monitoring and evaluation needs.
  • Mentor Conservation Planning and Evaluation staff to develop staff’s technical, communication, and leadership skills.


  • Support the development of public and private partnerships to secure operational and programmatic funding for Science and Evaluation in coordination with the Chief Conservation Officer, External Affairs Staff, and Regional Offices.


  • PhD or Master’s degree with equivalent experience. Eight years professional experience in monitoring, evaluating, and reporting program or project effectiveness is required. It is desirable that this experience be in a natural resource-oriented organization. Demonstrated knowledge of participatory facilitation processes, contemporary evaluative techniques, and adaptive management.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively with a broad range of staff to create a highly integrated program.
  • Demonstrated ability to facilitate productive exchange among government and non-government partners.
  • Ability to organize and prioritize work on multiple simultaneous tasks and meet deadlines.
  • Strong speaking and writing skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • Computer proficiency.
  • Willingness to travel.


Commensurate with experience.


Washington, DC

Application Notes:

Please submit a cover letter describing your interest and qualifications, and resume.

Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the US on a full-time basis.

Equal Opportunity Statement - The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation complies with all applicable federal, state and local laws in its commitment to being an equal opportunity employer. The Foundation does not discriminate against applicants or employees on the basis of race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, ancestry, marital status, personal appearance, citizen status, disability, sexual orientation, gender, identity or expression, pregnancy, child birth or related medical conditions, family responsibilities, matriculation, genetic information, political or union affiliation, veteran status or any other status protected by applicable law.

Disclaimer - The statements contained herein are intended to describe the general nature and level of work to be performed by the employees in these positions. The statements are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of a person in each position. Other responsibilities, duties, and skills may be assigned and management retains the right to add or change the responsibilities, duties, and skills at any time.