Jobs &

Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness is currently hiring for the following positions:

Advocacy Director


The Advocacy Director provides overall leadership for and management of the advocacy strategy of the Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness. The Advocacy Director is responsible for the development, implementation and monitoring of plans and strategies to advance the mission of the Friends primarily through public advocacy.


  • Works closely with the Executive Director, staff and board on the development and implementation of the organization’s strategic advocacy plans
  • Works closely with Friends staff to ensure communications campaigns and outreach/ education programs are effective and consistent with the organization’s strategic advocacy
  • Serves as staff liaison to the Policy Committee of the Board of Directors
  • Establishes and grows relationships with local, regional and national land managers, the scientific community and elected officials and their staff members
  • Establishes and grows relationships with peer local and national partner organizations


  • Develops and drives the organization’s advocacy strategy and tactics
  • Develops and implements issue campaigns, consistent with the strategic plan and budget
  • Builds a national network of conservation activists, including members, potential members, volunteers, conservation decision-makers, coalition partners, educators and the community at large
  • Manages legal strategy for the organization
  • Serves as a strong and vocal advocate for wilderness values in a variety of situations
  • Represents the organization as a lobbyist at the Minnesota Legislature and U.S. Congress
  • Oversees development of advocacy training for volunteers, members, activists and partners
  • Oversees intern projects relating to policy issues or policy campaigns
  • Maintains a network of professional contacts within Congress, Minnesota Legislature, agencies and local governments to better inform work and assist advocacy efforts
  • Attends professional development opportunities to stay current in natural resource and wilderness-related matters


  • Bachelor’s degree in political science, environmental studies, public policy or related fields
  • Three or more years’ experience managing advocacy efforts for an organization or equivalent experience
  • Strong and efficient technical writing skills
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks and meet deadlines while remaining detail-oriented
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • An excellent, tactful listener with a willingness to seek solutions and an ability to recognize when others need to be involved in activities or decisions
  • Strong initiative
  • Proficiency in the computer software, programs and applications needed to effectively meet the job responsibilities
  • Ability to handle confidential information
  • Willing to be a flexible member of a small but effective and passionate team that creates impact above its size, including some evening and weekend work
  • Passion for preserving the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and its ecosystem


  • Master’s degree in an appropriate field or J.D.
  • Five or more years’ experience managing the advocacy efforts of a conservation organization or nonprofit or equivalent experience
  • Lobbying or work experience at the Minnesota Legislature and/or U.S. Congress
  • Experience managing organizers
  • Experience working in a policy oriented organization, preferably 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4)
  • Strong familiarity with legal writing and procedures
  • Sense of humor


Submit cover letter, resume, writing sample, and references (preferably electronically and in one document) to:

Chris Knopf
Executive Director

Applications will be accepted until January 29, 2018.

Development and Membership Director

Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness is seeking a full-time Development and Membership Director.


The Development and Membership Director works closely with staff to support the mission and activities of the organization through fundraising and member engagement. The individual must be passionate about working well with other members of our small team and willing to fully embrace the mission of the organization. The individual often represents the organization publicly by participating in outreach events and partnership initiatives. This position is classified as full-time, 40 hours per week.


  • Works closely with the Executive Director on fundraising initiatives, including managing the membership program and stewarding and soliciting individual, foundation and business donors.
  • Works closely operations, advocacy and communications staff to develop effective fundraising strategies that support programmatic initiatives.
  • Works closely with the Board of Directors and other volunteers on fundraising initiatives.


  • Prepare an annual development and membership plan in coordination with the Executive Director
  • Manage the membership program, including coordinating annual renewals, promoting giving opportunities and reporting on remittance
  • Coordinate membership mailings, including daily donation acknowledgements, monthly in-house mailings and semi-annual mailings with print vendors (list editing, mail merges, and stuffing envelopes)
  • Identify, steward and solicit major individual donors in coordination with the Executive Director
  • Research, steward, and solicit foundation and business donor prospects, including writing and submitting grant applications and preparing grant reports
  • Work with Board members and staff to establish new relationships to facilitate fundraising
  • Facilitate fundraising partnerships (i.e., Interest for Others, 1% for the Planet)
  • Coordinate special giving campaigns (i.e., Give to the Max Day)
  • Provide support for education, conservation and advocacy initiatives


  • Position is salaried at $50,000-$60,000
  • Vacation, sick and holiday time
  • Annual wilderness travel benefits, including 5 work days and up to $300 in expenses for a Boundary Waters/Quetico canoe trip


  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Three years of experience working in fundraising
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks and meet deadlines while remaining detail oriented
  • Strong writing skills and experience with various forms of written communication
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, ability to listen well and positively represent the organization and its mission
  • Strong initiative and work ethic, ability to efficiently manage time and workload
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Google applications etc.
  • Willing to be a flexible member of a small but effective and passionate team, available for events and meetings outside of regular office hours
  • Ability to work with confidential information relating to the organization’s work
  • Experience with customer relationship management (CRM) software preferred but not required
  • Passion for preserving the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and its ecosystem


In one document, submit cover letter, resume, three references and writing samples (no more than three) by Thursday, January 11th to:

Chris Knopf
Executive Director

Internship Program

The Friends offers a variety of unique internships that provide students an opportunity to gain practical experience working with a high-impact non-profit and develop workplace skills in membership, policy, and communications. Internship positions are part-time (typically 10-12 hours per week) and are offered in the spring, summer, and fall.

For more information about internship opportunities or applications, contact the internship coordinator.

Conservation Fellows Partnership

The Conservation Fellows Partnership is a 10-month program for high school students of color that aligns with the academic year. As a part of the program, students work with the Friends to learn about addressing conservation issues and assist with advocacy and outreach initiatives. To learn more about the Conservation Fellows Partnership, visit the program page on our website.