Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center seeks Executive Director

Founded in 1976, the Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center, with headquarters based in Austin, is one of the oldest conservation and environmental education organizations in Texas, with a long-standing history of connecting people to the wonder and joy of nature. First established as a preserve, Westcave has expanded its stewardship from the fragile grotto and surrounding uplands to a focus on raising the next generation of environmental stewards through conservation, education, and collaboration. Westcave is looking for looking for an inspiring and intelligent leader to champion its mission. If you are interested in this opportunity, please send your resume and a cover letter describing your qualifications and vision to [email protected] by March 30, 2019.

Today, Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center manages 76 acres of land thanks to our 12 staff (9 FTEs), 20 board members, and more than 100 volunteers. With a budget of just under $1million, Westcave welcomes approximately 16,000 visitors to our preserve annually, delivers more than a dozen programs (including partnering on an overnight camp), and enthusiastically works to increase access to nature. With the creation of the Children in Nature Collaborative of Austin (CiNCA) in 2010, Westcave introduced a framework for more than 60 area member organizations to advocate for the value of getting all kids outside more often—and having a way to do it. Operating CiNCA, Westcave serves as the backbone organization enabling an exponential reach of community resources.As Westcave prepares to welcome our new Executive Director, we are excited for our next steps and continued development. Living our core values of innovation, well-being, excellence, integrity, joy, and equity in our work to inspire a lifelong practice of protecting and enjoying nature motivates us, and we are ready for the next leader for this effort.

About the Executive Director role: At Westcave, the Executive Director is our chief connector, steward, and catalyst. As an organization that is simultaneously hands-on and a thought leader, the Executive Director champions our work, empowers our staff, and leverages our resources. As a connector…

  • Maintain our integrated approach to our three pillars of conservation, education, and collaboration across two sites (downtown and the Preserve) as well as out in the community
  • Build relationships and advocate for inclusive, welcoming, equity-driven solutions to support outdoor learning and play
  • Engage Westcave’s neighbors to adopt conservation practices that effect environmental quality on the Preserve and beyond
  • Leverage leadership and relationships to tip the scale toward outdoor play and learning across the greater Austin community

As a steward…

  • Oversee conservation of Westcave’s 76 acres of wild Hill Country—habitat to hundreds of plants and wildlife species, including the federally-listed Golden-cheeked Warbler
  • Leverage creative, fearless, visionary leadership to viably expand our impact
  • Secure and carefully manage financial resources for the organization

As a catalyst…

  • Inspire parents, children, and educators throughout the region to protect and enjoy nature and to better understand the Hill Country ecosystem
  • Engage local philanthropists and problem-solvers in addressing Nature Deficit Disorder
  • Navigate new business model routes and opportunities to reach our organization and community level goals

Expected expertise and experience:We are looking for an Executive Director who has experience…

  • Managing financial operations and logistics as a responsible steward with open communication
  • Recruiting, inspiring, and sustaining staff and volunteer leaders
  • Developing and navigating public-private partnerships successfully to address community needs
  • Assessing business models and structures for appropriate pivots and opportunities
  • Working strategically within nonprofit organizations as a leader, manager, and fundraiser

We are looking for a Executive Director who believes…

  • Access to nature is critical to the development of happier, healthier, and smarter kids—and adults!
  • The growing inequity between Austin’s under-served communities and the rest of the population must be prioritized in our work
  • New ideas and innovation are parts of problem-solving
  • Healthy financial management, fund development, and operations are essential to the backbone of an organization’s success

We are looking for an Executive Director who will…

  • Work as an egalitarian macro-manager who enjoys our work and the people doing it
  • Actively represent Westcave in the community with a magnetic communication style
  • Inspire others to join us by leading by example and with integrity

Please join us!We are looking for an inspiring and intelligent leader to champion our mission! If you are interested in this opportunity, please send your resume and a cover letter describing your qualifications and vision to [email protected] by March 30, 2019.