Food System Professional Employment Opportunities

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Job Detail: Farmland Access and Farm Viability Program Director

About Maine Farmland Trust:

Maine Farmland Trust is a statewide organization that protects farmland, supports farmers, and advances the future of farming. Our goal is not just to protect Maine farmland, but to revitalize Maine’s rural landscape by keeping agricultural lands working and helping farmers, and their communities, thrive.


Position Summary:

The Farmland Access and Farm Viability Program Director’s primary responsibilities are to guide and support the work of all Farmland Access and Farm Viability Staff, to coordinate the administrative work of the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs, including planning, evaluation, budget development, and reporting, to supervise the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Program staff, and to participate in the management of MFT’s overall operations as a member of the Supervisors Team. This position also has responsibilities related to Farmland Access and Farm Viability program implementation and delivery. This position is based out of either of MFT’s offices, with occasional travel between offices required.


Position Responsibilities:

  • Supervise and support the staff within the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs.
  • Support staff in these Programs to recognize key issues and opportunities, solve problems, navigate programmatic and organizational changes, and do their work as well as possible.
  • Provide supervision and annual performance reviews of staff in the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs.
  • Serve as Human Resources (HR) point person for staff in these program areas, as needed.
  • Coordinate regular meetings of Farmland Access and Farm Viability staff.
  • Act as a resource for Farmland Access and Farm Viability staff by providing support for and/or feedback on existing programmatic projects and initiatives. Consult with and advise staff in these Programs on key programmatic decisions.
  • Monitor adherence to stated programmatic and organizational policies related to the work of the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs. Develop and implement any additional policies necessary to guide the work of these Programs.  
  • Facilitate development of and manage all contracts, agreements and Memoranda related to work performed in the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs.
  • Lead staff in these Programs in periodic review of program formulas, procedures, and policies (in consultation with legal staff) to inform and make changes as needed.
  • Build and maintain good relationships and partnerships with other agricultural service providers, particularly those that provide services related to farm access, transfer, and viability, as well as representatives of state and federal agencies. Represent MFT at various events and on various committees, as requested
  • Ensure successful implementation of the key aspects of the Farmland Access and/or Farm Viability programing.
  • Guide the successful implementation of the relevant programmatic components of MFT’s Strategic Plan and ensure all programmatic activities, whether new or existing, are in alignment with the Strategic Plan.
  • Support the integration of MFT’s Guiding Values, and its supporting organizational culture, into the work of the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs.
  • Find and support opportunities for Farmland Access and Farm Viability staff to engage in leadership development and step into collaborative leadership opportunities, such as working groups designated to advance the strategies and objectives of the strategic plan.
  • Provide strategic thinking to ensure the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Program staff are aware of critical trends and issues and are positioning their work accordingly. Take the lead on investigating and developing new and special projects to test and pilot new ideas and programmatic directions that align with MFT’s strategic plan.
  • Provide leadership for and guide the implementation of developing strategies to better integrate MFT’s programmatic work, communication systems, and overall organizational development.
  • Participate in regular meetings of the MFT Supervisor’s Team and participate in the organizational management work performed by this team.
  • Compile, edit, and submit necessary materials for MFT Board and relevant committee meetings, including regular program reports.
  • Assist the Philanthropy Program by identifying potential sources of funding that could support the work of the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs, including foundation, individual, and corporate donors. At the request of the Director of Philanthropy, actively participate in fundraising efforts and work closely with the Philanthropy Team to create and/or review materials to be used for funding proposals. Participate in preparation of periodic reports to funders.
  • Work with supervised staff to develop and then compile and refine proposed budgets and work plans for the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs, including individual work plans, as part of MFT’s annual budget process. Monitor staff work plan progress throughout the year. Oversee approved programmatic expenditures.
  • Lead recruitment activities for new Farmland Access and Farm Viability Program staff.
  • Train, supervise, and support new staff in these Programs as needed.
  • Coordinate and manage an annual conference on farmland access, transfer, and succession issues in collaboration with other interested partners. Assist with the planning and execution of other Farmland Access or Farm Viability Program events as requested.
  • Manage MFT’s involvement as a loan servicer in the USDA-Farm Service Agency’s Land Contract Guarantee Program.
  • Perform other program implementation and delivery responsibilities as may be identified by MFT’s annual work plans for the Farmland Access and Farm Viability Programs.


Position Qualifications:

  • Commitment to farmland protection and the future of farming in Maine.
  • 2-3 years prior experience working in farmland access and/or transfer, farm viability, or a related field.
  • 2-3 years prior experience managing and/or leading a successful program or organization, along with exceptional collaborative management skills.
  • A comprehensive familiarity with the landscape of Maine’s agricultural services and service providers that offer farmland access and farm viability services.
  • Successful experience in complex project management.
  • Basic knowledge of farming (adequate to facilitate trust and connection with farmers, and to allow you to make sound decisions when guiding programmatic activities.)
  • Experience with employee coaching and staff development, as well as the ability to serve as a program development resource to supervised staff.
  • Ability to work independently and with minimal supervision.
  • Ability to work as part of a team and coordinate remotely with other members of program staff.
  • Ability to listen and to communicate effectively in writing and in person, and to build rapport and develop effective relationships with others, and to work well with a wide variety of people, including among farmers.
  • A positive attitude, a commitment to customer service, and an appreciation that you are an ambassador for the organization in all that you do.   
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office products and cloud-based document sharing products.
  • Willingness to travel statewide and to work occasionally on evenings and weekends.
  • Ability to provide transportation.


Compensation and Benefits:

Salary range: $50,000-$60,000.


To Apply:

If you have any questions, contact Rachel at 338-6575 or Apply through the email.

About the job

Location Portland, Maine
Field Administrative
Time Full-time
Date 26 December 2019

About the company

Company name Maine Farmland Trust
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