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The Spring Island Trust
Job Field:
Job Type:
Full Time
South Carolina
Location Detail:
Job Description:

The Spring Island Trust (SIT) is seeking an ecologist/naturalist with a strong background in natural resources management and conservation biology, a passion for teaching, and strong interpersonal skills to serve as its next Executive Director. The SIT was established as a non-profit in 1990 -- at the same time that the master plan was created for the development of 400 homesites on Spring Island in Okatie, South Carolina. Spring Island is a 3,000 acre sea island located within the Port Royal Sound. The island has a diversity of habitats ranging from maritime forests to fire-managed pine savannas and early successional fields. There is now a low-density residential community of approximately 350 homes dispersed throughout the Island. The mission of the SIT is to preserve and protect Spring Island’s environment and cultural history, providing education, expertise, and leadership in the conservation of natural resources throughout the Lowcountry. See for more information.


With the assistance of a dedicated and experienced staff, as well as an engaged Board of Trustees, the Executive Director will oversee habitat management of approximately 1300 acres, manage educational programming, facilitate research both on and off island, engage with community members and volunteers, and oversee the ongoing execution of the Trust’s mission. The current SIT staff, which has an annual budget of $1M, includes its executive director, a habitat manager/wildlife biologist, an ecologist specializing in native-plant landscaping, an education director, a senior naturalist who oversees the Master Naturalist program, a communications coordinator and an executive administrator. 

The Spring Island Trust is a unique organization. The Executive Director position will provide a motivated individual with the dynamic opportunity to manage a diversity of programs and interact with a wide variety of people in South Carolina’s Lowcountry.

The position has a start date of June 2022.


  • Work with staff to continue existing programming
  • Work with Board of Trustees and staff to further the Trust’s mission
  • Oversee the habitat management of approximately 1300 acres of nature preserve
  • Present programs on natural history, biodiversity, and natural resources management to a variety of audiences
  • Facilitate on-island and regional citizen science programs
  • Facilitate on-island and regional ecological research.
  • Connect and network with conservation efforts and programs at the regional level
  • Inspire volunteerism in SIT programs and engage with volunteers
  • Serve as a technical consultant for the Spring Island Property Owner’s Association and Spring Island Club with regard to environmental decisions in managing properties 
  • Devise and participate in education programs for Spring Island residents to highlight the island’s biodiversity and help them understand their ongoing role in maintaining quality habitat on their properties (strict covenants to ensure homesites provide native habitat are imbedded in governing documents)
  • Work with the SIT’s CFO and Board Treasurer to manage annual budget and oversee Trust finances
  • Participate in annual fundraising activities


  • M.S. or Ph.D. (preferred) in the field of ecology, wildlife biology, conservation biology, or related field
  • 7 - 10 years of relevant experience with a non-profit organization and/or in an academic position
  • Experience with and a passion for managing habitat for biodiversity, preferably in the coastal plain of the southeastern United States
  • Demonstrated leadership, task-management, and teaching capabilities
  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written
  • Outstanding interpersonal skills and collaborative ethics and the ability to work with people of all ages
  • Ability to generate enthusiasm for Trust activities and conservation management
  • Personal professional network to bring scientists and naturalists to Spring Island


  • Full time position requiring an on-island presence when not in the field
  • Involves some weekend and evening commitments
How to Apply:

To apply for this position please submit a resume and cover letter to: 
Sally Swift, Spring Island Trust Search Committee, at