Executive Director Hiring


Position starts at 20 hours/week, with strong potential to increase to 30+ hours/week with sustained organizational growth.  Pay DOE.  Position begins Monday, December 1st or when filled (start date potentially negotiable).  Qualified applicants will be interviewed beginning Monday, November 17th.

Applications due emailed to office@vermontwildernessschool.org by 5pm on Wednesday, November 12th.


The Executive Director of Vermont Wilderness School acts as Chief Executive Officer, responsible for managing all aspects of the organization.  The Executive Director works closely with the VWS Board of Directors to ensure the continued health, growth, and success of the school.

Vermont Wilderness School is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1999 and based in the vibrant and historic town of Brattleboro, VT.  VWS offers exceptional nature mentoring experiences for youth and adults in southern Vermont and western Massachusetts, including the internationally acclaimed week-long Art of Mentoring training.  We are supported by a broad network of families, students, instructors, donors, and community members whose lives have been positively affected by our work.

VWS is deeply involved in the local, regional, and national/international network of schools and initiatives based on the 8 Shields / Art of Mentoring approach to nature-based learning and community development.  We are committed to practicing routines of awareness, peacemaking, and continual mentoring and improvement.  Our organization is currently in an exciting phase of growth, new initiatives, and building our core team of leaders.  We welcome applications from highly creative, passionate individuals interested in taking on a significant leadership role with our small yet quickly growing and deeply rooted school.


„  Personnel: Responsible for recruiting, hiring, training, evaluating, supporting, and terminating all core VWS staff.  Overseeing and supporting the development and growth of VWS’s core staff team.

 „  Board of Directors: Acts as the primary interface between the VWS Board and VWS staff and programs, including collaboration on developing and implementing fundraising strategy.  (Approximately 15-20% of VWS revenues are from tax-deductible donations)

„  Administration: Supports and shares work with VWS’s office administrator in overseeing administration of the school, including parent/student communications, accounting/bookkeeping, tax filing, and regulatory & reporting compliance.

„ Communications: Oversees all marketing operations, including website, social media, newsletter, and paper and mail advertising.

„ Finances: Works with the Board Treasurer to oversee organizational finances, including program and overall organizational budgets, biweekly payroll for employees, timely and complete tax filing, and monthly and annual auditing and reporting.

„ Community and Public Relations: Ensures that the organization and its mission, program, products and services are consistently presented in a strong, positive image to all community stakeholders. 


  • Highly skilled in clear, direct, peaceful communication.
  • Strong familiarity with 8 Shields / Art of Mentoring tools and language.
  • Proven ability to coordinate and manage diverse teams while supporting the personal gifts, growth, and self-expression of each person.
  • Strong experience in attending to diverse details while staying connected to the big picture, with multiple collaborators and across multiple project timelines.
  • Internal resilience and self-sufficiency.  Ability to cheerfully improvise and adapt in changing circumstances, and to move forward based on core principles in the face of uncertainty.
  • Excellent writing and speaking skills. Warm, welcoming, connected phone presence, email “voice”, and in-person speaking style.
  • Digital literacy: basic experience with Word, Excel, Gmail, Google Docs, & Dropbox is expected.  Experience with WordPress web publishing and/or Quickbooks accounting is a plus.
  • Strong desire to contribute to nature connection, mentoring, and community building initiatives.
  • Passionate about personal growth and organizational development.
  • Experience with small nonprofit fundraising is a strong plus.
  • Willingness to go to new edges and try new approaches in service to the development of the school.
  • Strong ability to connect across social/cultural differences and work with staff, program participants, and community members of diverse backgrounds.
  • Vision, passion, and strong strategic thinking for the ongoing development of a small community-based nature education organization.
  • Ability to commit to a minimum of 2 years of service as Executive Director based in our local area, with preference for individuals interested in long-term service and growth with the school beyond 2 years.
  • Sense of humor, curiosity, and creativity is a must!


Please reply to office@vermontwildernessschool.org by 5pm on Wednesday, November 12th with a resume, three references, and a concise letter describing:

  1. Your experience with nature-based education, as a student, instructor, and program manager/coordinator.
  2. Your training and experience with 8 Shields / Art of Mentoring tools and approaches, including peacemaking and group/team leadership.
  3. Your non-profit organizational experience and leadership qualifications.
  4. Your reasons for applying for this position.


Vermont Wilderness School provides equal employment opportunities to all applicants without regard to race, color, religion, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status.