Head Chef

Job Locations
Seasonal, Full-Time
Job Category
Program/Project Management


The National Audubon Society is a nonprofit conservation organization that protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow. We work throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education, and on-the-ground conservation. Audubon’s state, regional, national, and international programs, nature centers, and chapters have an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire, and unite diverse communities in conservation action. As a sentinel species, we recognize that the fate of birds is inextricably tied to the fate of us all.


Audubon has more than 700 staff working across the United States and seven countries in 17 state and regional offices, 41 nature centers, and 23 wildlife sanctuaries. Together as one Audubon, we aspire to alter the course of climate change and habitat loss, leading to healthier bird populations and reversing current trends in biodiversity loss.


Audubon is committed to a culture of workplace excellence, where our talented and diverse staff are deeply engaged, with a strong sense of belonging. The birds Audubon pledges to protect differ in color, size, behavior, geographical preference, and countless other ways. By honoring and celebrating the equally remarkable diversity of the human species, Audubon will bring new creativity, effectiveness, and leadership to our work throughout the hemisphere.

Position Summary

The kitchen staff, including the Head Chef, Sous Chef, and Kitchen or Camp Assistants, with the help of a group of devoted Friends of Hog Island (FOHI) volunteers, provides 3 meals a day for up to 80 people during the course of 6-day, 5-night camp sessions. A commercial-grade kitchen is part of the dining building known as “The Bridge”. The kitchen provides the only food service available on the island so it is important that staff review and accommodate the dietary restrictions of all staff, guests, and volunteers to provide safe, healthy, and complete dining options.  


The Head Chef is responsible for directing kitchen operations, developing meal plans, placing food orders, and preparing meals for up to 80 people (Hog Island staff, volunteers, and participants) on Hog Island in a safe, healthy, and environmentally-friendly manner, for all scheduled Audubon Camp sessions and rentals. She/He/they will direct and schedule the Sous Chef and Kitchen or Camp Assistant and work closely with the FOHI Volunteer Coordinator who will schedule and direct a dedicated team of volunteers who assist in the kitchen, dining room, and elsewhere in the camp. Strong and independent time management skills are required to efficiently schedule time in the kitchen and minimize work beyond 40 hrs/week. She/He/They will order food and beverages while managing kitchen costs and emphasizing sustainable and healthy options. We provide the only food service available on the island so it is important that she/he/they will review and accommodate dietary restrictions of all staff, guests, and volunteers to provide safe, healthy, and complete dining options. The Head Chef will be managing a small team and should be able to maintain a positive attitude and work to maintain high morale. The kitchen will have to abide by strict Covid-19 protocols and the Head Chef will be responsible for enforcing and abiding by these protocols. Most meals are served buffet style with outdoor seating, though there may be indoor options depending on Covid policies and weather.

The Head Chef is preferred to live in Audubon housing on Hog Island in order to perform the functions of this position. Campers, Hog Island staff, and volunteers are provided three meals each day including desserts, so early morning preparation is required for breakfast served at 6 or 7 AM and dinner activities may last until 7 or 8 PM. All-day field trips require preparation of picnic lunches and snacks.

The chef’s unheated private room and bath is located on Hog Island within a five-minute walk over varied terrain to the kitchen. Utilities are supplied by Audubon. Meals are provided on Hog Island when the kitchen is in operation.  This is a full-time, seasonal role that is slated to start on May 1, 2023 and run through October 6, 2023. The work schedule is usually Sunday lunch through mid-day Friday, 40 hours per week, and the day revolves around meal planning and service that includes breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Weekend work is required. Some weeks will not include a full schedule and full hours may not be expected all weeks.



$23.50 / hour

Essential Functions

  • Must be available to work from May 1 – October 6, 2023
  • Supervise all aspects of the dining room activities necessary to accommodate up to 80 people
  • Supervise the Hog Island Sous Chef and Kitchen or Camp Assistant when in kitchen, and (with the assistance of the Sous Chef and FOHI Volunteer Coordinator) supervise the volunteers when they are providing assistance in both the kitchen, serving, and dining areas
  • Create and distribute work schedules (including meal prep assistance and after-meal clean-up; volunteer schedules are created by the FOHI Volunteer Coordinator)
  • Manage the set up and close down of the kitchen at the beginning and end of the Hog Island Camp season
  • Design and implement a meal menu for each Hog Island session that reflects an appreciation of and includes local and sustainably-harvested foods
  • Review dietary restrictions and preferences of staff, volunteers, and participants.  Plan meals to ensure safe, healthy, balanced food options are provided for everyone
  • Use environmentally friendly methods (composting, etc.) that reflect Audubon’s devotion to being an environmental organization
  • Present the kitchens sustainability and service mission to diners on a regular basis
  • Provide complete oversight and preparation of two of the three daily meals for camp staff, volunteers, and participants, and consult with the Sous Chef who is responsible for preparation of the third meal
  • Work with the Sous Chef to prepare “picnic” lunches for campers for on-site field trips and other Hog Island special events
  • Oversee waste reduction measures throughout the kitchen
  • Order food, beverages, and paper goods
  • Transport food, beverages, and kitchen supplies to the island
  • Participate in weekly meetings with the Hog Island staff

Qualifications and Experience

  • A minimum of 10 years professional food preparation experience, including experience in a residential camp setting or similar is preferred
  • Knowledge of procedures for creating menus, budgeting, and ordering food is desirable
  • Knowledge and desire to accommodate diverse dietary restrictions, and food safety protocols preferred
  • Demonstrated experience managing kitchen staff is a plus
  • Preferred candidate will be able to stand for extended periods of time and able to lift at least 50 lbs (repeatedly throughout the day), as well as walk up to two miles at a time (with or without accommodation)
  • Experience with operation of Hobart dish sanitizer, range, mixers, and baking equipment desired
  • Must hold or be able to obtain a current certificate as a ‘Certified Food Protection Manager’ from the Maine Department of Health and Human Services prior to commencement of work
  • Current TIPS (Training for Intervention Procedures) training card preferred
  • Must have obtained vaccination for Covid-19 before start of work
  • Willingness to wear masks according to employer policy to prevent spread of Covid-19
  • Experience or willingness to learn handling row boats and outboard motor boats is desirable
  • Interest in farm-to-table/slow food movement is greatly appreciated
  • Steady demeanor, strong work ethic, and flexibility are of paramount importance to this position

EEO Statement

The National Audubon Society is a federal contractor and an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE). All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. We are committed to a policy of nondiscrimination, inclusion and equal opportunity and actively seek a diverse pool of candidates in this search.

Accessibility Statement

The National Audubon Society endeavors to keep our careers site accessible to any and all users.  If you would like to contact us regarding the accessibility of our website or need assistance completing the application process, please contact Accommodations@audubon.org. This contact information is for accommodation requests only and cannot be used to inquire about the status of applications.

COVID Policy

All new hires must be fully vaccinated prior to their start of employment unless they are pre-qualified by HR for exemption.


Sorry the Share function is not working properly at this moment. Please refresh the page and try again later.
Share on your newsfeed