Prescribed Fire Coordinator, Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever

Northern IL

Position Title: Prescribed Fire Coordinator

Organization: Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever

Location: Northern Illinois

Organization Overview:  In 1982, a group of pheasant hunters saw the connection between upland habitat loss and declining pheasant populations. An organization dedicated to wildlife habitat conservation was needed, and Pheasants Forever was formed. Pheasants Forever’s mission work quickly garnered it a reputation as “The Habitat Organization,” a tagline the nonprofit conservation group uses proudly to this day.

Pheasants Forever’s mission is to conserve pheasants, quail, and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public access, education, and conservation advocacy.

Position Overview: Primary responsibilities of this position include the development and implementation of prescribed fire standards and training to be used by Illinois NRCS and Pheasants Forever staff. Continue the development of training workshops for private landowners, resource professionals and fire enthusiasts. Provide outreach to local prescribed fire associations and landowners on safe and effective prescribed burning. Write and review prescribed burn plans for private landowners and biologists. The biologist will work closely with a wide range of individuals and resource professionals to meet the objectives. This position will require a self-starter with excellent communication and organizational skills and a strong work ethic. This effort will provide an opportunity to make significant contributions to the conservation of natural resources in Illinois. This position will be a full-time employee of Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever.


  • Work with PF and Illinois NRCS staff to identify prescribed fire training needs for employees.
  • Lead the Illinois PF staff to increase and enhance training opportunities for private landowners, resource professionals, and fire enthusiasts.
  • Prepare presentations and webinars concerning prescribed fire for training and outreach purposes in the state.
  • Increase credibility and support of prescribed fire with private landowners, governmental agencies, non-governmental organizations, and individuals.
  • Coordinate and assists with the development of PBAs to promote prescribe fires
  • Write prescribed burn plans for private landowners and provide guidance to PF biologists in the writing of prescribed burn plans.
  • Prepare budgets, assist with grant writing, and monitor expenditures.
  • Communicate regularly with Illinois prescribed fire practitioners across the state to build upon the use of prescribed fire.


  • Extensive knowledge and experience with prescribed fire and/or wildfire.
  • Knowledge of wildlife ecology, wetland and grassland management including the ability to utilize various habitat management tools in the development of management plans.
  • Ability to communicate clearly and effectively with landowners and partner agencies.
  • Ability to work independently with little supervision and with diverse clientele.
  • Extensive knowledge of conservation and wildlife programs provided by Federal agencies (i.e. USDA and US Fish and Wildlife Service), state agencies, private partners and PF/QF. In addition, knowledge of how these programs are implemented in an agricultural landscape is desired.
  • Good computer skills including working knowledge of MS Word, MS Excel, and ArcView/ArcGIS.
  • Demonstrated experience as a leader with strong initiative.
  • Ability to organize, develop, and implement educational and outreach activities, including workshops, seminars, and publications.
  • Excellent and proven verbal/written communication and organizational skills.
  • Conflict resolution skills.
  • Valid driver’s license required; work vehicle provided; some use of personal vehicle required (mileage reimbursement provided).
  • Able to obtain USDA Federal Security Clearance.

Training and Experience Guideline: Any combination of training and/or experience that will enable the applicant to possess the required knowledge, skills and abilities. Bachelor’s degree in wildlife biology, plant ecology, range management, or closely related natural resources field (M.S. preferred). Prior experience with private lands conservation and land management is also preferred. Prescribed fire training and field experience required. Working knowledge of farming and ranching operations is a plus.

Start Date: April

Salary/Pay: $50,000-$58,000 + Benefits

Application Deadline: February 26

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