WANTED: Innovative, entrepreneurial leader with a passion for conservationMEC and CPAWS seek a Program Director for The Big Wild

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For the past four months, Social Signal has been privileged to work with the Mountain Equipment Co-Op and the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society on The Big Wild, a community for wilderness conservation. It's an extraordinary partnership and project: one that marries MEC's membership and special place in the appreciation of Canadian wilderness with CPAWS' advocacy for wilderness conservation.

Now there's an opportunity for someone else to join in the work of moving The Big Wild forward. If you know an innovative, entrepreneurial leader with a passion for conservation and an appreciation for social media, please encourage them to apply!

Program Director of thebigwild.org

Closing Date: March 27, 2009                                                                  
Status:  FT One Year Contract, possibility for extension
Location: MEC Vancouver Head Office, Sustainability and Community Department             

Purpose: Mountain Equipment Co-operative seeks an experienced strategist and communicator who can help us create Canada’s most engaged and effective online community for wilderness conservation.  The Big Wild is an innovative conservation initiative founded by MEC and the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS): it’s an online community that brings Canadians together to enjoy our wilderness and help keep it wild. By combining conservation community expertise with MEC’s nationwide network of almost three million members, we can build a community that inspires a new constituency of Canadians to care about and act on behalf of our wilderness. 

As the Director of thebigwild.org, you will head up the Big Wild’s efforts to expand our community’s size and effectiveness by developing online activities and promotions, leveraging other MEC outreach channels (including our stores, email and partnerships), engaging members in outdoor activity challenges (the Big Wild Challenge) and strategizing around conservation campaigns, social networking and other collaboration tools. Your leadership will help build a large-scale community that demonstrates support for the vision of protecting at least half of Canada’s public land and water, and for specific conservation initiatives and campaigns.

What you’ll be doing:


  • Setting the community’s strategic direction and goals in consultation with the Steering Committee, and implementing strategy, plans, programs and services to increase online activity
  • Developing plans for promotional and outreach activities, materials and partnerships, and executing those plans in collaboration with our team
  • Ensuring the Big Wild platform’s technical excellence and responsiveness to community needs. Includes setting the trajectory for platform development and maintaining the development roadmap
  • Managing the operations and growth of the Big Wild human resources (team of a part-time moderator, technical contractors, communications and conservation support), achievement of milestones, contracts, budgeting and ongoing reporting
  • Leading communications and marketing for The Big Wild, including marketing, public relations and responses to public inquiries
  • Identifying and acting on opportunities to collaborate with organizations such as other non-profit organizations, businesses and schools
  • Coordinating with key staff at CPAWS and MEC to build internal and external partnerships, support and audience
  • Establish the Big Wild as an inclusive entity that exists beyond founder organizations (later priority after the initial phase of community building)

What you need to do it well:

  • A passion for social media or online community, and a relentless fascination with how you can harness it to the issues you care about
  • A broad interdisciplinary background that includes experience in business/entrepreneurship, online technology and nonprofits or advocacy organizations
  • At least two years of experience related to online community, social media, blogging or social networking
  • Excellent communications and writing skills, including marketing and outreach experience
  • At least two years of experience in project management, preferably including experience managing web sites or projects
  • Knowledge of and passion for wilderness conservation and outdoor recreation in Canada (professional experience in this field is not a requirement)
  • Demonstrated ability to manage teams (including staff and contractors) and to develop effective stakeholder relationships
  • An established network of relationships with conservationists, recreationists, environmentalists and social media influencers
  • An entrepreneurial spirit and experience in successful completion of the development phase in a new venture, major project or organization.
  • Experience in coalition/organization building and funding an asset
  • Oral fluency in both official languages (French/English) highly desirable, written fluency an asset
  • Infectious enthusiasm that begins with one symptom: your desire to be part of making The Big Wild a bold new force for conservation

Please submit resume with covering letter stating job posting number addressed to jobs@mec.ca

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