GIS Specialist, Conservation

Job Post Information* : Posted Date 2 months ago(9/22/2023 9:19 AM)
Job Locations
Regular, Full-Time
Job Category


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 towards a future where birds thrive because Audubon is a powerful, diverse, and ever-growing force for conservation. Audubon has more than 700 staff working across the hemisphere and more than 1.5 million active supporters.

North America has lost three billion birds since 1970, and more than 500 bird species are at risk of extinction across Latin America and the Caribbean. Birds act as early warning systems about the health of our environment, and they tell us that birds – and our planet – are in crisis. Together as one Audubon, we are working to alter the course of climate change and habitat loss, leading to healthier bird populations and reversing current trends in biodiversity loss. We do this by implementing on-the-ground conservation, partnering with local communities, influencing public and corporate policy, and building community.

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 brings new creativity, effectiveness, and leadership to our work throughout the hemisphere.

Position Summary

Reporting to the Conservation Science Senior Manager, the GIS Specialist, Conservation is responsible for applying advanced skills in data management, geoprocessing, spatial analysis, and map design to support the Audubon Great Lakes and Audubon Upper Mississippi River conservation teams. This position contributes to a variety of projects from field conservation, scientific analyses, fundraising needs, membership outreach and support for grassroots partners and chapters. This position is a GIS and data management resource for Audubon Great Lakes and Audubon Upper Mississippi River and works in collaboration with the science team at the National Audubon Society.



$55,000-70,000 / year

Essential Functions

  • Lead the development of cartographic materials for science, policy and litigation, network and grassroots engagement, community outreach, development, marketing and communications.
  • Lead the development and execution of novel cartographic, visualization, and spatial methods for integrating temporally dynamic and disparate data, including writing code in R and Python.
  • Lead analysis of remote sensing data to inform spatial prioritizations at multiple scales.
  • Design surveys, oversee data collection and maintenance, analyze data, and support the development of reports for priority initiatives.
  • Lead complex projects with dynamic timelines and resolve issues to keep projects on track to achieve desired goals, including managing projects and escalating risks or concerns to leadership.
  • Organize and maintain geospatial data on habitats, wildlife populations, and natural resources in Great Lakes and Upper Mississippi River priority regions.
  • Lead development of static and interactive communications materials based on core GIS products (e.g. interactive web-maps).
  • Design new tools to display and/or interact with GIS data and conservation priorities and provide technical support and training to other staff.
  • Co-develop projects with conservation team and contribute to grant proposals and project design.
  • Serve as an Audubon representative, which may include presentations, public speaking, meeting participation and/or other interactions with other Audubon staff, agencies, NGOs, and Audubon chapters.
  • Annual travel to meetings and research sites and occasional work outside standard business hours.
  • Partner with Audubon staff to ensure that equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging principles are incorporated and followed in all aspects of our work.
  • Other job-related duties as assigned.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in Geographic Information Systems, landscape ecology, natural resource management, or related discipline.
  • 5 years of applied GIS and science experience. An equivalent combination of education and experience will also be considered.
  • Expertise with ArcGIS (desktop and Online) including Spatial Analyst, Data Management, and Model Builder. Experience managing, processing, analyzing, and editing large volumes of geospatial data (both vector and raster), and sharing it via ArcGIS Server (or similar).
  • Familiarity with web-based map production and GIS skills, along with relevant programing languages such as Javascript, HTML, KML, CSS/Carto-CSS, and familiarity with using Google Maps API, Mapbox, CartoDB, and/or others.
  • Fluency with geometry-based analyses (joins, intersections, unions, spatial selection), attribute-based analyses (queries, field calculator, managing multiple selections).
  • Experience with management and analysis of wildlife population data, community science programs, and data driven conservation and habitat management.
  • Demonstrated ability to manipulate data and script analyses in R, and/or Python.
  • Excellent oral and written communications skills and the ability to synthesize and communicate technical and complex information to both technical and non-technical audiences.
  • Expertise with remote sensing and land cover change methods, technologies, and data.
  • Interest in pursuing and developing new conservation ideas, tools, and programmatic direction.
  • Adaptability and flexibility with organizational structures.
  • A self-starter, with excellent judgment, can work independently.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills, including the ability to collaborate with partners, and manage projects ethically and in a timely manner.
  • Strong project management skills, including but not limited to setting and implementing effective goals and objectives, problem-solving, time management.
  • Demonstrated experience assessing conservation priorities from spatial data.
  • Familiarity with birds of North America, bird conservation organizations, and the birding community strongly preferred.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite and other web-based products.

This position is represented by the Communication Workers of America (CWA).

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 This contact information is for accommodation requests only and cannot be used to inquire about the status of applications.


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