Associate, Agriculture & Forestry

Reports To: 
Manager, Ecuador
Location: 
Ecuador – Tena, Napo

The Rainforest Alliance is an international nonprofit organization that works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behavior. Based in New York City, with offices throughout the United States and worldwide, the Rainforest Alliance works with people whose livelihoods depend on the land, helping them transform the way they grow food, harvest wood and host travelers. 

Position Summary: 

The Associate, Agriculture & Forestry will be responsible for supporting the TREES Manager in the implementation of the forestry and agriculture components in the ICAA and NZDZ projects, including the effective coordination and execution of proposed activities with local government and non-government entities, local partners, Rainforest Alliance Forestry and Agriculture local promoters, and consultants. S/he will be responsible for training and providing advice to the farmers and land owners in the project area (communities of Hatun Sumako, Napo province) on forest legislation regarding sustainable forest usage plans and programs, degraded area reforestation and area restoration, as well as providing training and advise on FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) sustainable management standards to ensure the proper conservation of forest resources, and a reduction in deforestation and degradation of forest resources. S/he will also support the identification and development of market opportunities for forest timber and non-timber resources, and ensure that potential economic resources generated are managed appropriately through business plans. S/he will also be responsible for providing technical support for the implementation of activities related to the agricultural component of the ICAA and NZDZ Projects. S/he will focus on issues related to best management practices, productivity and quality of naranjilla, or other crops to be defined in the landscape, as well as cocoa through the provincial Cocoa Roundtable. S/he will train professionals, technicians and producers in implementing sustainable agricultural practices. 

Responsibilities: 
  • Develop and support the implementation of action plans jointly with producers to achieve sustainable natural resource management and sustainable agriculture;
  • Provide support to forest and agriculture producer groups in entrepreneurial development and social organization;
  • Identify and promote potential commercial markets for the timber and non-timber forest and agriculture products;
  • Provide monthly reports on program and activities achievement according to Rainforest Alliance requirements;
  • Provide support through the monitoring and implementation of ICAA and NZDZ work plans and assure achievement of established targets in the corresponding work area;
  • Provide information on funding and market opportunities for the communities’ productive processes;
  • Represent TREES Manager in meetings and events when needed;

Forestry

  • Encourage and promote best practices in Forest Management for timber and non-timber products and Sustainable Agriculture practices, as well as environmental services in the selected work areas;
  • Provide on-site assistance to farmers and land owners for land distribution (zoning) to maintain and recover forest and maintain efficient soil usage, and identify and promote good agricultural practices at farm level;
  • Lead and participate in workshops and field activities, communicating forest norms and standard forestry practices for both Ecuador and FSC to engage the forest owners in the sustainable management of their resources;
  • Develop modules, tools and guidance materials on good resource use practices to achieve increased sustainability, productivity, and quality;
  • Advise small timber producers in the application of local government regulations for forest use;

Agriculture

  • Execute technical field audits in order to reach compliance with FSC standards and Sustainable Agricultural Network (SAN);
  • Promote partnerships with state and private organizations to integrate production in value chains or other schemes;
  • Participate in dialogue opportunities at community level; and
  • Other duties assigned.
Qualifications: 
  • University degree in Forest Engineering, Agriculture Engineering, Natural Resources or related field; Advanced degree preferred;
  • Minimum 4 years professional experience in the forest sector, agriculture sector and rural development;
  • Experience in coordination and implementation of community projects;
  • Experience in Forest and Agriculture management, community development management, timber and non-timber product commercialization, forest certification, forest policies; preferably in tropical rainforest areas;
  • Knowledge of the Ecuadorian forest sector (norms, regulations, institutions, markets), standard of the Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN) and (FSC) their implementation and procedures;
  • Understanding of issues and challenges related to capacity building and adult education oriented to farmer beneficiaries;
  • Solid interpersonal skills to manage relationships with the private sector, producers and NGO;
  • Strong leadership skills to provide support and guidance to the team;
  • Demonstrated experience in managing and supervising field staff;
  • Solid organizational skills, ability to work independently and in teams, assess priorities and multitask with attention to details;
  • Solid written and spoken communication skills; English or Kichwa (desired);
  • Very solid interpersonal skills with ability to interact culturally, linguistically, and diplomatically with diverse a diverse population;
  • Strong computer skills (word processing, data processing and worksheets);
  • Class B driver license and driving skills are desirable; and
  • Ability to travel nationally up to 50% of time working in sometimes difficult and remote forest conditions.
Salary: 

Commensurate with experience. 

Notes: 

Only candidates authorized to work in Ecuador will be considered

Application: 

Send resume, cover letter and salary history to Human Resources, Rainforest Alliance email: ecpersonnel@ra.org please use the following format in the subject line: first name and last name, job title of position you are applying for. 

The Rainforest Alliance is an equal opportunity employer.