Program Coordinator

Oregon Kelp Alliance (ORKA)

Oregon Kelp Alliance (ORKA)

Administration · Full-time
Oregon, USA
Posted on Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Oregon Kelp Alliance Program Coordinator

Deadline to apply – February 17, 2023

Period of employment – 1 year, with opportunity to continue subject to available funding

Start Date – on or by March 1, 2023

Hours - Full-time flexible hours, including weekends and as needed to support field work

Salary range – competitive salary, based on experience

Location - Oregon coast, with emphasis on Southern Coast

Report to – Tom Calvanese, Director, Oregon Kelp Alliance

The Oregon Kelp Alliance (ORKA) is a community-based organization representing diverse interests in kelp forest stewardship and restoration in the state of Oregon and has received a $945,000 grant from NOAA’s National Center for Coastal and Ocean Studies to conduct a coast wide kelp forest assessment in Oregon. For more on ORKA, see

This project will provide essential baseline data on kelp forest ecosystem health in Oregon. This information is critical for enabling informed management, conservation, and restoration initiatives. These activities will promote public engagement and collaboration with multiple stakeholders through the Oregon Kelp Alliance.

The goal of this project is to perform a coast-wide snapshot of the extent and status of kelp forests in Oregon. These data will provide the following: 1) A barometer of ecosystem health of Oregon's kelp forests. 2) Enable informed science-driven management, conservation, and restoration activities. 3) Serve as a baseline to measure the impacts of climate change and management efforts.

An ORKA Program Coordinator will be contracted as a full-time hire (12 months) to co-lead fieldwork with the Scientific Coordinator, spearhead community engagement and outreach, manage ORKA membership communications, support tribal partnerships, plan and direct ORKA events, assist with technical/scientific work, and oversee communications and marketing components for the project. This position will also lead the Programs Team, including divers, drone and ROV pilots, contractors, students, and volunteers. The position may continue beyond 12 months, subject to available funding.

Main tasks and responsibilities include:

  • Co-Leading ORKA field work at nearshore sites along the coast of Oregon, including subtidal SCUBA surveys, ROV habitat mapping, and experiments undertaken to explore restoration techniques or other conservation work. May include:Diving, snorkeling Piloting small boats or kayaks

  • Coordinate subtidal surveys, ROV, and aerial drone surveys.

  • Community engagement and outreach - organizing and leading outreach/engagement events

  • Building ORKA membership and managing communications with members, such as managing the electronic newsletter and facilitating ORKA member meetings

  • Engaging with Indigenous Tribal partners

  • Planning and managing ORKA events (e.g. kelp forest restoration events, workshops)

  • Representing ORKA in public forums and to local stakeholders

  • Coordinating dive/snorkel/boating field work (particularly volunteer based ORKA events and other ongoing related ORKA work)

  • Support for ORKA website maintenance

  • Scientific Writing - Co-author scientific papers on ORKA work

  • Co-author Kelp Forest Recovery Plan as member of ORKA plan writing team

  • Assist with technical/scientific work (data entry, assisting field work, etc.)

  • Support Communications Team with content for advertising and merchandise

  • Support Communications Team with ORKA social media content

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Marine Biology, Biology, Ecology, Conservation, Natural Resource Management, or a related field
  • Comfort swimming and snorkeling
  • Experience conducting marine science fieldwork
  • Previous experience writing either scientific peer-reviewed publications or reports and white papers.
  • Demonstrated organizational skills relevant for collaborative research projects
  • Previous experience with science communication and/or engagement
  • Ability to communicate with and work with diverse partners
  • Oregon State Driver’s License (or ability to obtain upon employment, with ability to frequently travel the Oregon coast, with emphasis on the south coast.

Desired Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in Marine Biology, Biology, Ecology, Conservation, Natural Resource Management, or a related field
  • Previous experience designing and deploying scientific experiments in the marine environment
  • Experience coordinating collaborative research projects or programs
  • SCUBA diving certification, including a American Association of Underwater Science (AAUS) certification
  • Experience piloting small boats and kayaks
  • Experience with website building software (i.e. Wordpress)
  • Experience facilitating large meetings (15+ people)
  • Experience working with Indigenous Tribal Nations
  • Live in, or be able to relocate to Port Orford or the Oregon South Coast region

Employment Details

The position will be employed by ORKA’s fiscal agent, The Ocean Foundation, with competitive salary and benefits.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Oregon Kelp Alliance and The Ocean Foundation are committed to equal opportunity in employment and encourage applicants from historically underrepresented groups.

Oregon Kelp Alliance (ORKA) is an equal opportunity employer.