Collaboration Program Manager, New Mexico Highlands University

Las Vegas, NM

Position Title: Collaboration Program Manager

Organization: New Mexico Highlands University

Location: Las Vegas, NM

Organization Overview: The mission of the New Mexico Forest & Watershed Restoration Institute (FWRI) is to promote practices that advance adaptive management, reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire and improve ecosystem function. The Collaboration Program Manager complements FWRI expertise in monitoring, geospatial information systems, collaboration, outreach and ecological restoration. The FWRI is one of three Southwest Ecological Restoration Institutes (SWERI), with partner institutes in Arizona and Colorado, and collaborates in the Forest Restoration Triangle (FORT) with the NMHU Forestry Department, the only SAF-accredited forestry department in New Mexico, and with the New Mexico State University John T. Harrington Lab in Mora, NM.

The FWRI is located on the campus of Highlands University in historic Las Vegas, NM. Highlands University, a Hispanic Serving Institution, offers a comprehensive education to a diverse student body, and Highlands faculty are actively involved in research, service and outreach. Las Vegas is located at the foot of the picturesque Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and offers small-town charm, a healthy environment and abundant year-round outdoor recreation opportunities in nearby national forests, state parks, and wildlife refuges. Santa Fe, New Mexico’s capital, is an easy 60-minute drive to the west, and Taos and Albuquerque can be reached in less than two hours.

Position Overview: The FWRI seeks an integral member of a growing team working towards wildfire resilience, post-fire restoration, and watershed conservation. We welcome candidates who can work collaboratively with a dynamic team in applied research and community engagement. The Collaboration Program Manager is responsible for coordinating the FWRI’s role in multi-stakeholder collaborative groups; for facilitating collaborative action among partners; for creating and building collaborative capacity in multi-stakeholder groups; for organizing and taking a leadership role in regional networks of collaborative organizations; for supervising FWRI staff working in collaboration; for conducting applied research on collaboration in an adaptive management context; and for compiling and reporting lessons learned from participation and collaboration in natural resources management. The goal of the Collaboration Program is to catalyze the transformation of New Mexico’s community culture to one that supports a restorative and regenerative economy and is ecologically sustainable.


  • Facilitating, coordinating or participating in meetings of collaborative groups and watershed associations around New Mexico
  • Serving as a resource to collaborative groups in preparing planning documents such as charters, mission statements, operating principles, and communications plans, and facilitating group processes to develop these documents
  • Chairing committees and working groups in collaborative organizations and networks
  • Advancing partnerships with federal, state, Tribal and local land management agencies and other stakeholders that expand landscape-scale restoration and fuel reduction treatments in forests and woodlands
  • Taking a leadership role in networking collaborative groups in the Southwest and Western U.S.
  • Advocating for collaborative forest restoration and adaptive ecological management in New Mexico and the Southwest
  • Engaging in applied research on collaborative natural resource management and watershed restoration, and reporting on research at conferences and in publications
  • Serving as the FWRI’s specialist in community-based collaboration and collaborative group processes, facilitation, and socio-economic dimensions of restoration
  • Developing resources to assist organizations to build collaborative capacityAcquiring funding to support collaborative activities, research and outreach
  • Supervising NMFWRI collaboration staff, including VISTA volunteers and student workers
  • Performing additional duties as assigned by the FWRI Director

Minimum Requirements:

  • Education: A master’s degree in rural sociology, anthropology, human geography, human dimensions of natural resources, or another conservation-related field
  • Experience: Three (3) years’ experience facilitating on-the-ground collaborative activities and organizations
  • Commitment to diversity in conservation, including in the workplace, with partners, and/or in programs and projects.
  • Experience working in conservation and communicating with diverse individuals and communities in rural area, including work with governments, non-profits, and private landowners.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Demonstrated commitment to personal and professional development in the context of strong teamwork.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Education: A Ph.D. in rural sociology, anthropology, human geography, human dimensions of natural resources, or a closely related conservation field
  • Education: Certification/training in facilitation, mediation, conflict resolution, network development, coalition building, and/or collaborative group processes
  • Experience: five years of experience influencing, developing, and implementing on-the-ground conservation projects.
  • Experience: Participation and leadership in place-based collaborative organizations and partnerships
  • Experience: Applied research on human/social dimensions of adaptive ecological management and restoration, reported in documents, publications and public presentations
  • Experience: Demonstrated experience with historically under-represented and historically marginalized interests in conservation, including in the workplace, with partners, and/or in programs and projects.
  • Experience: Demonstrated excellence in management of diverse stakeholders and complex projects / events with attention to detail, budget management, and strong communication.
  • Experience: Experience working with collaborative conservation professionals in the western United States.
  • Must possess and maintain a valid New Mexico Driver’s License. Selection of an out-of-state candidate will require possession of a valid New Mexico Driver’s License within sixty (60) days of employment
  • Must be willing to occasionally work weekends, evenings, and odd hours, as required
  • Must be willing to travel, at times to remote locations
  • Continued employment is contingent on grant funding
  • NMHU has implemented a mandatory COVID-19 Vaccine requirement for students and employees. For detained information, visit Coronavirus(Covid-19) Information- New Mexico Highlands University.
  • Knowledge of collaborative forest and watershed restoration and adaptive ecosystem management
  • Knowledge of and experience with funding sources for collaborative watershed restoration, such as the Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Program (CFLRP), the Collaborate Forest Restoration Program (CFRP), and the Joint Chiefs’ Landscape Restoration Partnership
  • Skilled at facilitation, mediation, conflict resolution, network development, and/or coalition building
  • Skilled at planning and conducting applied social science research, at collecting and analyzing data, and at reporting results
  • Ability to work productively with diverse stakeholders representing varied interests
  • Ability to form and sustain partnerships and professional relationships with land owners, managers and stakeholders
  • Ability to write technical and educational reports for internal and external publication
  • Knowledge of the Spanish language and ability to speak and write Spanish is a plus, though not required
  • Knowledge, familiarity and experience in New Mexico
  • Knowledge and skill with geospatial information systems (GIS) is desirable
  • Ability to work productively, professionally and collegially with a diverse set of colleagues representing an array of disciplines

Physical Demands:

• Sitting: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frequently
• Standing: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frequently
• Walking:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frequently
• Bending:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Occasionally
• Squatting:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Occasionally
• Climbing:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Occasionally
• Kneeling:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Occasionally
• Lifting up to 20 pounds:. . . . . . . . . . . . . Occasionally
• Lifting greater than 20 pounds:. . . . . . . Seldom

Salary/Pay:$52,000 – $70,000 depending on qualifications/experience

Application Deadline: Accepted until filled.

How to Apply: A complete online application must include: 1) Letter of interest/cover letter that highlights relevant knowledge, skills, and abilities; 2) A CV or Resume; 3) Names, telephone numbers and email address of three (3) professional references in the online application; 4) copies of unofficial transcripts for all earned degrees or degrees in progress. Candidates must also complete and submit and NMHU Job Application. Candidates who are invited for interviews will be required to submit official transcripts. References will be contacted in conjunction with interview. Upload required materials with online application. For disabled access or services, call (505) 454-3242 or contact Human Resources at NMHU IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER

Please use the online application to view the full job description as well as how to apply.