EcoCenter Specialist

Job Type

Full Time


Details: 15.00/Hour




32 Jennings Street
San Francisco
United States

Description , an equal opportunity, nonprofit employer is seeking qualified applicants to join the team as a Specialist for programs and staff at EcoCenter at Heron’s Head Park. is an umbrella 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization encompassing five divisions—Aquarium of the Bay, The Bay Institute, EcoCenter at Heron’s Head Park, Bay Model Alliance, and Sea Lion Center. All divisions are continuing to carry out our shared mission: To protect, restore and inspire conservation of San Francisco Bay and its watershed, from the Sierra to the sea.

We are currently hiring one (1) full-time EcoCenter Specialist with availability Tuesday-Saturday. This staff member will focus on supporting all EcoCenter programming including K-12 education, transitional age youth internships, public programs, and supporting the daily operations of the site. Under the direct supervision of the EcoCenter Manager and with support and leadership of the EcoCenter Coordinator, the EcoCenter Specialist is primarily responsible for ensuring the best possible student, intern, and guest experiences through teaching educational field trip and public programs, providing training, leadership, and support for EcoCenter Interns and Naturalists, and periodically supervising staff.


  • Teach K-12 and youth group field trip education programs for Bay Area school groups and youth groups (average of 1-2 days/week), including the following types of field trip programs:
  • Onsite programs: Thematic classes with hands-on activities at the EcoCenter focused on environmental education, especially sustainability and green building design, climate change (including live animal presentations); watershed and California native plant and animal ecology, and environmental justice;
  • Off-site programs: Thematic classes delivered at schools and other sites in Bayview Hunters Point and other communities.
  • Teach/mentor transitional age youth in the EcoCenter Internship program, including:
  • Developing and teaching internship specific lessons;
  • Delivering training on the EcoCenter’s sustainable systems and educational/public programs; and
  • Intern project management.
  • Lead EcoCenter public programs, including:
  • Science Saturdays: Family-friendly, hands-on, STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education events;
  • Sustainable building tours: EcoCenter tours, including environmental justice history, for college/adult groups and drop-in guests; and
  • Volunteer days: Coastal cleanups and native plant habitat restorations.
  • Provide leadership to the EcoCenter Interns and Naturalists by modelling exemplary performance as a Specialist and (periodically) a Naturalist including:
  • Maintaining a positive attitude among staff;
  • Following all EcoCenter policies and procedures, and having a secure knowledge of these policies;
  • Delivering high quality K-12 field trip, youth, and public programs; and
  • Proactively troubleshooting and/or communicating challenges through appropriate channels;
  • Daily supervision of EcoCenter Naturalists and Interns, with support for EcoCenter Coordinator and Manager;
  • Provide general support of EcoCenter daily operations including native plant landscape maintenance, exhibit maintenance and building janitorial duties;
  • Represent the EcoCenter at Heron’s Head Park and its programs at community engagement events, at programs scheduled at community sites and by delivering marketing materials to key community partners;
  • Assist with consistent and effective team communication including bringing questions and/or concerns regarding programs or operations to EcoCenter Coordinator/Manager;
  • Responsible for building opening and closing duties as assigned, including training on building security systems;

Completion of projects related to the organization’s K-12, youth, and public programs as assigned, including but not limited to curriculum development, supplies management, and program evaluation;

  • Attendance at and participation in team meetings as scheduled;
  • Support other organization-wide initiatives, including cross-division initiatives;
  • Follow all safety regulations; and
  • Other duties as assigned.

QUALIFICATIONS: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each primary duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


  • Must either have or are able to attain a California Driver’s License and be willing to drive occasionally to teach EcoCenter Education programs, deliver outreach materials, or transport interns. DMV clearance required upon hire;
  • Able to pass a background check;
  • Interest in and ability to be trained in the animal handling/animal presentation of any animal in the EcoCenter’s animal ambassador collection; Knowledge of local ecology, conservation issues, and teaching best practices;
  • Outstanding interpersonal, verbal, and written skills;
  • Detail-oriented and strong multi-tasking ability;
  • Customer service oriented and the ability to interact with staff, volunteers, general public appropriately;
  • Interest and ability to be trained on all K-12 and youth programs offered through EcoCenter;
  • Interest and ability to be trained on native plant landscape maintenance and habitat restoration;
  • Interest and ability to be trained on all public programs;
  • Ability to work independently and in teams; and
  • Ability to take initiative and see projects through to completion with minimal supervision.


The physical demands and work environment 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 the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to stand (for up to 8 hours), sit, walk, and reach with hands and arms, and talk or hear. The position requires walking on concrete floors, extensive time standing, intervals of time outdoors in varying environmental conditions, tolerance of high levels of noise, and extensive public speaking, sometimes in noisy environments. Must be able to lift 30 lbs.


Position Specifics:

  • This is a full-time, hourly (non-exempt) position – scheduled for an average of 32 – 40 hours per week depending on programming;
  • Work shifts will be scheduled Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and/or Saturday;
  • Benefits are included (medical, dental, vision, 401K) after a 90-day introductory period has been completed; and
  • Position’s starting wage is $15.00/hour. All training time is paid.

Deadline for applications is open-ended.

Level of Language Proficiency


  • Associates’ degree (completed or in progress) in an environmental/conservation degree program or equivalent experience at an environmental/conservation non-profit organization;
  • Minimum one year of experience leading K-12, youth, intern and/or community programs at an informal science/environmental education organization;
  • Experience in staff, youth or intern management (preferred); and
  • Bilingual (preferred).


Ability to read and interpret documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals. Ability to write reports and correspondence. Ability to write and present engaging science programs. Ability to speak effectively before groups or individuals.

Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

High School

How To Apply

To Apply: To be considered for this position, please send a resume, cover letter, and three references via e-mail to attention: Vanessa Gayton. Deadline for applications is open-ended.