Climate and Agricultural Program Manager @ American Farmland Trust

Climate and Agricultural Program Manager


About Us

American Farmland Trust is the only national organization that takes a holistic approach to agriculture, focusing on the land itself, the agricultural practices used on that land, and the farmers and ranchers who do the work. Since our founding in 1980, AFT has helped permanently protect over 6.5 million acres of agricultural lands, advanced environmentally-sound farming practices on millions of additional acres, and helped thousands of farm families make a go of it (primarily through programs that increase farm viability and/or enhance farmland access). Long a pioneering leader, AFT is now riding a new wave of growth, driven by agriculture’s most pressing needs and opportunities.

We believe diversity drives innovation. We are inclusive. We embrace differences. We recognize and respect the fundamental value and dignity of all our employees. We celebrate the unique traditions, heritages, and experiences our employees bring to the workplace. We are committed to creating and sustaining an inclusive culture that promotes and values diversity, and where everyone feels empowered to bring their authentic selves to work every day.

We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, expression or identity, national origin, age, disability, or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Farmland Trust complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which we have facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.


California’s San Joaquin Valley is one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world, but it’s facing numerous challenges. Diminishing water availability, climate change, new regulations, and a growing population threaten the future of agriculture in the region. American Farmland Trust’s San Joaquin Valley Land and Water Strategy is accelerating the conservation of the valley’s precious land and water resources. It is protecting the most valuable farmland and ranchland, scaling up regenerative agricultural practices, protecting surface and groundwater supplies, providing technical training to a diverse group of farmers and ranchers, supporting habitats for fish and wildlife, and advocating for effective local and state policies.

AFT’s California Climate and Agricultural Program Manager (ASPM) plays an integral role in program development and delivery. The ASPM is responsible for the management of existing complex multi-benefit projects throughout California with a primary focus on agricultural stewardship programming components of AFT’s San Joaquin Land and Water Strategy.

As an integral part of the California program strategy team, the CAPM, interacts directly with partners and stakeholders and works closely with California and national AFT staff members to help increase the pace and scale of program development and implementation, and oversee the completion of a suite of high-impact land protection and regenerative agriculture programs.

What You’ll Be Working On

  • Leading coordination on the San Joaquin Valley Conservation Collaborative including regenerative agriculture project prioritization criteria development, project implementation oversight, partnership outreach planning, and management of this dynamic initiative with a budget of more $20 million over the next 5 years.
  • Cultivating, facilitating, and monitoring active participation and progress among partner organizations affiliated with the San Joaquin Valley Conservation Collaborative
  • Overseeing and identifying a portfolio of high-impact land protection and conservation projects that advance strategic objectives of the California program, and collaborating with AFT’s Land Protection and Farm Legacy divisions
  • Managing all aspects of the agricultural stewardship programs, including but limited to managing program performance, overseeing budgets, supervising staff, and managing partner relationships
  • Informing decision making and providing expertise and thought leadership on a broad range of agricultural stewardship topics including groundwater recharge and infiltration practices, soil health management, and other related conservation practices
  • Supervising and mentoring staff to ensure high quality work and accountability with workplans and budgets
  • Contributing to the California program’s vision and strategy, short- and long-term goals and objectives
  • Sharing in knowledge dissemination, reporting, and communications, internally and externally
  • Representing AFT in industry-group conferences, professional associations, and other public venues

Required Qualifications

The ideal candidate will be highly motivated, creative, excels in building trust and finding common understanding between diverse stakeholders, working with others to achieve multiple benefits, and is:

  • Committed to effective project management and tracking scopes, schedules and budget
  • Quick learner with the ability to adapt to new processes and contexts
  • Highly responsible with a strong sense of ethics; trustworthy, dependable, and passionate about the mission of AFT
  • Exceptional communicator (written/verbal), facilitator and mediator; able to distill complex scientific or policy concepts and present them to broad audiences and foster dialogue among diverse stakeholders
  • Strong people- and time-management skills with ability to be flexible and responsive to changing priorities
  • Ability to set realistic goals and identify the appropriate resources and tools to achieve them
  • Capacity to proactively juggle multiple tasks and competing priorities within a high-energy environment
  • Ability to provide recommendations to inform decision-making using critical thinking and risk management skills
  • Strong working knowledge of surface and groundwater management, agricultural BMPs, and agricultural conservation easements
  • A track record of developing, managing and completing complex multi-million-dollar programs
  • Familiarity with central California watersheds and agricultural stewardship politics
  • Political savvy and experienced in partnership development, especially in the agricultural and natural resource community
  • Excellent computer proficiency (MS Office – Word, Excel and Outlook)
  • Must be able to work under pressure and meet deadlines, while maintaining a positive attitude and providing exemplary customer service
  • Ability to work independently and to carry out assignments to completion within parameters of instructions given, prescribed routines, and standard accepted practices.

Education & Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in sustainable agriculture, natural sciences, natural resource management or policy, water resources or related field. Master’s degree a plus.
  • 7+ years’ experience with program management, including direct staff supervision, client management, program development and implementation and budget oversight.


It is highly preferred that the position be telework and based in the San Joaquin Valley where a significant portion of program work will take place. The secondary location of preference is AFT’s California office in Sacramento. Travel required for this position is approximately 20%; primarily local depending on residence.

Why you should apply

  • Be a part of a purpose-driven, committed, knowledgeable, high-performing, experienced and fun team
  • A diverse and inclusive work environment
  • A cause and mission you can be proud of
  • Competitive compensation & Benefits
  • Remote work opportunities
  • Flexible scheduling

Ready to apply? We are accepting applications until September 21, 2020. If this job sounds like a fit for you, then click on the ‘apply’ button below.

Apply Here:


How to Apply

Click Here to Apply Online


Sacramento, California, United States




2020-08-26 00:00