Chicago Region Trees Initiative Community Coordinator - Full-time, Term-limit

Lisle, IL
Full Time

The Chicago Region Trees Initiative (CRTI), a regional coalition of organizations, working together to improve the health of the urban forest in the Chicago region, was founded by The Morton Arboretum, a world-renowned nonprofit dedicated to the study and growth of trees. We are seeking an experienced individual who can join our team to help build strong community relationships through outreach and engagement of community leaders and staff. This individual will need to be able to write and manage grants, including the implementation of projects at the local and statewide scale. They should have a strong interest in environmental policy and work directly with government entities across the state to help with the management of their trees. The successful candidate will need to be able to relay complex topics and strategies to a wide range of audiences in small and large group settings clearly and concisely through written and oral expression. The CRTI is seeking someone who is well-organized and self-motivated to help our team succeed. This is a hybrid-eligible position.


Position Summary: Coordinate and assist with the implementation of the Chicago Region Trees Initiative (CRTI) Community Program, coordinating grant programs, and providing education, outreach, and activities to public landowners and managers to improve the health of the urban forest and quality of life in the State of Illinois with a focus on the seven-county Chicago region. Coordinate communication and database resources for designated constituents. Represent CRTI to partners and constituents to foster and facilitate improved health and sustainability of the urban and community forest and advance the mission of The Morton Arboretum. Funding for this position is expected for two years through restricted funding to CRTI, with a potential for extension.

Essential Functions:

  • Coordinate outreach, education, and activities to public landowners and managers to improve community policy, advocacy, and skills, and provide resources related to urban forestry grants and special funding. Prioritize and manage special projects related to community activities for CRTI. 
  • Assist in implementing the community goals and objectives of the CRTI Master Plan and CRTI Community Program.
  • Provide support and coordination for the Trees and Green Infrastructure Work Group to ensure CRTI goals and objectives are achieved.
  • Assist with writing, managing and implementing statewide grants and grant outcomes including data collection and reporting, policy document review and advising, related CRTI tracking, and the IDNR Community Accomplishments Reporting System (CARS) contact database. Solicit and write grant and funding proposals.
  • Review municipal ordinances for grant compliance and advise communities on how to enhance them.
  • Produce a monthly newsletter to constituents on funding and resource opportunities.
  • Conduct research for projects as needed. Compile, organize, and present data in print and  verbal communication.
  • Assist in the collection and input of community based data and contacts in the CRTI database. Organize and maintain community based CRTI files and records.
  • Occasionally work on projects and activities that take place outside of the seven county region. 
  • Demonstrate alignment with the Arboretum’s employee core values to be inclusive, take ownership, work together, keep learning and make the Arboretum exceptional.
  • Other duties as assigned. 

Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree preferred, in the areas of forestry, horticulture, or natural resource management. 2+ years experience required, with grant management preferred. International Society of Arboriculture certification preferred. Strong verbal and written communication skills required with prior experience presenting in front of an audience preferred. Experience with community and civic organizations and processes preferred. Familiarity with GIS mapping and analysis preferred. Must possess a valid driver’s license, which is subject to insurability and an annual Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) report. Proficiency with Microsoft Office, Constant Contact, Salesforce, social media, web content development, and Google applications beneficial. 

Success FactorsEffective time-management skills and a positive and flexible approach to the job. Strong collaborative and communication skills especially in terms of cultural awareness. Ability to nimbly manage complex tasks and concurrent projects. Customer service oriented with the ability to relate effectively with persons internal and external to the Arboretum. 

Physical Demands and Work Environment:

The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.

  • Physical Demands:  Requires some physical activity: limited lifting and carrying (up to 40 lbs.), walking over uneven terrain, regular local travel by car, truck, or train.
  • Work Environment:  Office environment and various venues for community events. Occasional outside work is required including digging, pruning, and planting of trees. 
  • Equipment:  General office equipment, digital camera, shovel, wire cutters, pruners, Arboretum truck and trailer.
  • Schedule: Work requires occasional evening and weekend hours.

The expected hiring range for this nonexempt position is annualized at $50,000-$53,000 based on experience that will be evaluated during the candidate selection process. We believe in the importance of pay equity and consider the internal equity of our current team members as a part of the final offer. This position is also eligible for a competitive benefits package

For full consideration, please include resume and cover letter with application.

The Morton Arboretum is a champion for diversity, supporting a culture of inclusion that attracts, inspires, and engages people to achieve success. The Arboretum is committed to hire and develop employees based on job-related qualifications irrespective of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or veteran status. To increase diversity in professions related to the public garden realm, we encourage applications from underrepresented minorities, persons with disabilities, and veterans.  

The Morton Arboretum is dedicated to complying with our obligations as an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All applicants are guaranteed equal consideration for employment. 

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