Wisconsin Bird Conservation Partnership

A cooperative partnership to deliver the full spectrum of bird conservation emphasizing volunteer stewardship.

Now Hiring: Important Bird Area Project Coordinator

Posted on Feb 2, 2022 by Ryan Brady   No Comments Yet

Important Bird Area Project Coordinator

For a PDF of this announcement, click here.

Project Background:

The Important Bird Areas (IBA) program is an international effort, with a global network of more than 12,000 IBAs identified in 200 countries, that exists to identify and encourage voluntary protection of critical habitat for birds throughout their annual lifecycle — breeding, migration, wintering.

In Wisconsin, there are 93 IBAs, and the program is coordinated by the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Partnership (WBCP), a coalition of 180 organizations dedicated to conserving birds. WBCP’s early IBA-related efforts focused primarily on identification and designation of new areas. Over the past year and a half, we have developed a process for assessing and prioritizing Wisconsin IBAs based on a range of criteria. Data collection and analysis included: 1) a general assessment of the conservation values of each existing IBA, 2) defining the short- and long-term threats to habitat loss and degradation and their potential resilience in the face of climate change, and 3) contacting local stakeholders to assess human capital and local organizational capacity. While this is an important step, WBCP recognizes that proactive coordination will be critical for conservation efforts within IBAs to reach their full potential. Statewide coordination for 93 diverse IBAs needs to be well-defined and focused.

Position Overview:

The WBCP Steering Committee has now created an IBA Project Coordinator position to work with partners to help ensure that IBA designations continue to play a meaningful role in bird conservation by protecting and enhancing valuable bird habitat. The IBA Project Coordinator will work with IBA stakeholders and partners (such as WI Department of Natural Resources, land trusts, land managers, bird clubs, etc.) in tailored approaches to build conservation strategies that are the best fit for each unique priority IBA.

We seek an IBA Project Coordinator/independent contractor to support project work under the following conditions:

  • Term: Part-time (15-20 hours/week) for 1 year starting immediately; position has potential to continue after 1 year, pending funding.
  • Location: Work will be conducted remotely, in or very near Wisconsin (schedule and work time are flexible), with occasional in-person meetings or events.
  • Pay Rate: $23/hour; payments will be administered bi-weekly based on hours worked.
  • Reimbursement: Personal vehicle mileage reimbursement provided at standard IRS rate; reimbursement for food and lodging (if necessary) during travel.
  • Benefits: None; unpaid time off may be taken if desired and approved.
  • Total Maximum Pay: $31,000.
  • Supervisor: WBCP IBA Committee.
  • Deadline to Apply: 11:59 pm CST on 28 February 2022.

Position Roles & Responsibilities:


  • Act as a catalyst to help establish strong local partnerships of stakeholders (such as Western Great Lakes Bird & Bat Observatory, Milwaukee County Parks, Audubon Great Lakes) at individual IBAs across the state, starting with identified pilot IBAs. Expand to additional IBAs as opportunities and time allow.
  • Pilot IBA support: Conduct targeted, ongoing conversations with partners. Help translate big vision to specific on-the-ground (implementation) plan.
  • Provide logistical support for IBA subcommittees (i.e., keep things moving), such as providing background help for workshop(s) and drafting IBA site accounts.
  • Attend meetings with the WBCP Steering Committee, IBA Committee, and IBA subcommittees.


  • Serve as the primary public and media contact for IBA-related matters, including reaching out to media outlets and posting to social media to celebrate IBA management success stories.
  • Share IBA management success stories amongst partners and prospective partners to help engage existing and emerging partnerships.
  • Maintain regular communication with partners and stakeholders. Develop tools to communicate with stakeholders at different levels (e.g., templates with commonalities, different messages for common audiences).


  • Organize and manage a digital repository of project-related IBA resources (e.g., research, discussions, data).
  • Collate and maintain contact list for IBA partnerships.
  • Identify and synthesize funding sources for use by local IBA partners (e.g., compile resources for types of grants, info that would align with regional plans). Assist in writing grants, as needed.
  • Ensure that IBA information resources are readily available to IBA site owners and managers. Complete training to establish fundamental and detailed understanding of how to apply the IBA Decision Support Tool to IBAs.
  • Help periodically update the IBA website using WordPress.

Required Qualifications:

  • Experience coordinating and organizing projects and working with multiple partners.
  • Passionate about advancing bird conservation efforts.
  • Be organized, a team player, and patient listener.
  • Experience working with MS Excel/Word, Zoom, Google Drive, and website software.
  • Verbal and written communication skills.
  • Independent, responsible, honest, and reliable.
  • Commitment to work inclusively and respectfully within a diverse community.
  • Hold a bachelor’s degree.

How to Apply:

  • Submit a brief cover letter and resume or CV to Karen Etter Hale at wbcibird@gmail.com by 11:59 pm CST on 28 February 2022. Feel free to reach out to Karen for questions about this position.


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