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Aquarium of the Pacific

Vice President of Education and Conservation

About the Aquarium

The Aquarium of the Pacific’s mission is to instill a sense of wonder, respect and stewardship for the Pacific Ocean, its inhabitants and ecosystems. Our vision is to create an aquarium dedicated to conserving and building Natural Capital (Nature and Nature’s services) by building Social Capital (the interactions between and among peoples). The Aquarium of the Pacific has redefined the modern aquarium. It is a community gathering place where diverse cultures and arts are celebrated and a place where important topics facing our planet and our oceans are explored through our exhibits and by scientists, policymakers, and stakeholders in search for sustainable solutions. It has taken a bold new approach in the future of aquariums with the opening of Pacific Visions in May 2019.

Since its founding in 1998, the Aquarium has become a leading attraction in the Southern California region. Beyond its world class animal exhibits, the Aquarium offers educational programs for people of all ages from virtual programming and hands-on activities, to lectures by leading scientists. Through these programs and a variety of multimedia experiences the Aquarium provides opportunities to delve deeper into ocean science and learn more about our planet.

The New Position for the Aquarium with an important purpose

The Vice President of Education and Conservation is a new position for the Aquarium, representing a commitment to the ongoing, year-over-year growth and success of the Aquarium’s education and conservation efforts. We seek a vice president of education and conservation to centralize a compelling and cohesive education and conservation initiative for the future. This individual will serve as a thought leader for coalescing our informal education, interpretive, and conservation programs into a world-class program. This position will work closely with the development team to create and implement a fundraising strategy for these programs.

The VP of Education and Conservation Responsibilities Include:

  • Development of a coherent, compelling narrative about the Aquarium’s education and conservation programs that captures the special aspects of the Aquarium’s education, interpretation, and conservation programs, while providing a clear vision for future growth.
  • Creation of a strategic plan for education and conservation programming that includes identifying key priorities, evaluation of existing initiatives, and development of future programs.
  • Curation of existing and future virtual programming and videos, leveraging this content for revenue or thought leadership.
  • Identification and acquisition of philanthropic support, including grants from government, private, corporate, and individual sources, to support education and conservation initiatives.
  • Identification of potential partnerships and alliances.
  • Management of strategic internal and external partnerships for education and conservation initiatives.
  • Participation as one of several spokespersons for various media inquiries.
  • Championing Aquarium efforts in diversity, equity, inclusion, access, and belonging.
  • Collaboration with key internal functions including finance, operations, development, marketing and communications, and human resources as appropriate.
  • Management of education team, attendance targets and budgets; dotted line management and collaboration with staff from other departments involved in conservation (husbandry, Seafood for the Future, community science, youth volunteer programs, etc.).

Professional Skills, Experiences and Qualifications needed for this job:

  • Strong staff, program and thought leadership experience within a zoo, aquarium, science center, or conservation organization.
  • Proven experience in formal and informal team management.
  • Experience in conceiving, developing and executing education, interpretation and conservation programs.
  • Minimum 5 years’ experience managing large teams and complicated multi-disciplinary efforts related to education and conservation.
  • Knowledge of modern pedagogical theory and current best practices in informal education and interpretation.
  • Outstanding skills in coaching and development of teaching professionals in the field.
  • Personal commitment to the building, growth and support of collaborative and effective work teams.
  • Strong technical / scientific understanding around the most pressing global and/or regional ocean conservation issues; ability to quickly digest and interpret technical information from scientific teams.
  • Knowledge of current and ongoing issues in ocean environment, earth systems ocean management.
  • Experience working with federal and state agencies, as well as major environmental foundations.
  • Strong, established external networks in the education and ocean conservation space.
  • Proven record of significant fundraising, grant-writing, and grant management.
  • Demonstrated commitment to promoting diversity and inclusivity in staffing and programming.
  • Excellent writing and public speaking skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal and collaboration skills.
  • Solid business acumen.
  • Ability to set and meet strategic objectives on time and within budget.
  • Competency in the use of office technology, media, and social media.

Education or comparable experience needed for this job:

  • Master’s Degree or PhD in environmental (preferably ocean-related) science, public policy, or environmental education.
  • Extensive management and fundraising experience and related record of accomplishment can substitute for higher degrees.

Personal qualities needed to be successful (and to enjoy) this job:

  • Passion for the ocean
  • Integrity and trustworthiness
  • Team-oriented, collaborative
  • Curious and focused on lifelong learning
  • Creativity
  • Common sense
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Blend of big vision and respect for detail
  • Adaptable and nimble
  • Patience and stress tolerance

Physical Demands

  • Must be willing and able to work nights, weekends, and other hours as required for events, fundraising opportunities, programs, and staff management reasons.
  • Occasional travel may be required, including domestic and/or foreign by air or by sea.

How to Apply

Aquarium of the Pacific
100 Aquarium Way
Long Beach, CA 90802
Phone: 562-951-3100
Fax: 562-951-1629

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