California State Deputy Director

American Farmland Trust
Sacramento, California
Nov 04, 2019
Dec 04, 2019
Position Type
Full Time

American Farmland Trust is the only national organization that takes a holistic approach to agriculture, focusing on the land itself, the agricultural practices used on that land, and the farmers and ranchers who do the work. AFT launched the conservation agriculture movement and continues to raise public awareness through our No Farms, No Food message. Since our founding in 1980, AFT has helped permanently protect over 6.5 million acres of agricultural lands, advanced environmentally-sound farming practices on millions of additional acres, and supported thousands of farm families. Long a pioneering leader, AFT is now riding a new wave of growth, driven by agriculture's most pressing needs and opportunities.

Since opening its first office in California in 1983, American Farmland Trust (AFT) has published groundbreaking research, led smart growth and farming coalitions, and worked with farmers on sustainable agricultural practices and protection of their farms for future generations. AFT is expanding significantly its reach and has recently launched new programs to best serve California farmers and the land they steward. Some of these innovative programs include Women for the Land, the Underserved Farmer Outreach Program, the Soil Health Bottom Line, and the San Joaquin Land and Water Strategy. In addition to on-the-ground programs, AFT is a strong voice in the state capitol, advocating for programs and policies that support our mission.

In the upcoming years, AFT is looking to expand its programs across California and increase the diversity of our partnerships to scale up our impact. For more information on AFTs programs in California, visit:

The California State Deputy Director position presents an exciting opportunity to play a significant role in shaping the growth of AFTs programs in California. Reporting to the State Director, the Deputy Director will have both internal and external facing responsibilities, ranging from partner relations, program management, and administration. The Deputy Director will work closely with the State Director to chart AFT Californias future growth and strategic response to an ever-increasing demand for the organization's services.

The Deputy Director will be based in AFTs office in Sacramento.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Oversee day to day management of AFTs programs in California. Support and provide oversight to the program team in program planning, budgeting, reporting, and evaluations.
  • Supervise and mentor staff to ensure high quality work and accountability with workplans and budgets. Oversee recruiting, performance reviews, staff deployment/workload balancing, and career progression with related internal communications and budgeting/finance duties.
  • Help create a supportive and inclusive work environment for a diverse staff working across California.
  • Support the growth and development of programs to serve underserved, beginning and other diverse communities of farmers, landowners and other constituencies being served by AFT.
  • Build and maintain strong relationships with funding and program partners.
  • Develop thought leadership around specific topics/emerging practice areas, collaborate with AFT policy and scientific experts as needed.
  • Share in knowledge dissemination, reporting, and communications, internally and externally. Represent AFT in industry-group conferences, professional associations, and other public venues.
  • Provide support to the State Director with program strategy and development.
  • Play a supporting role in fundraising including coordination with fundraising and program staff with developing proposals, managing funding agreements and creating funding reports.
  • Other duties as assigned.
  • At least 8 years of professional experience, preferably in a senior management position, in a nonprofit organization, foundation, government agency or the private sector.
  • A Bachelor's degree in a field related to AFT's mission.
  • Proven track record of delivering superior results and assuming leadership roles.
  • Experience in creating an inclusive work environment for diverse staff is preferred. Previous work history with diverse communities of farmers, landowners, and other constituencies is also valuable.
  • Ability to see the big picture while also being detail-oriented.
  • Success in roles requiring simultaneous management of multiple priorities under tight timelines is important.
  • Proven ability to work with efficiency, flexibility, and good humor
  • Demonstrated ability to build and maintain relationships with a wide array of people junior and senior, for-profit and nonprofit, and from diverse backgrounds
  • Outstanding communication and interpersonal skills are essential
  • Demonstrated track record of successful fundraising with institutional funding partners.
  • Willingness to spend at least 20% of the time in travel throughout California.
  • A valid US driver's license and access to reliable transportation.
  • Passionate about American Farmland Trusts' mission and impact.


Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience and background. AFT provides a full and generous benefits package.

Please submit a cover letter with a resume for consideration.

Application Deadline November 26, 2019

American Farmland Trust provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Farmland Trust complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the organization has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

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