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TREEVITALIZE Chesapeake Bay Community Tree Specialist

Harrisburg Office (Harrisburg, PA)

Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC), in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation & Natural Resources (DCNR) Bureau of Forestry (BOF), seeks a highly motivated, driven, and well-organized individual to help promote and manage urban and community forestry efforts in Pennsylvania. The ideal candidate will have excellent interpersonal and communication skills, exhibit outstanding planning skills, and demonstrate the ability to build trusting relationships with cross-sector partners. Knowledge of urban and community forestry, tree identification, and PA natural resources is desirable. Competency in grant management is highly valuable. A four-year degree in natural resources, environmental studies, or urban planning or a related degree and equivalent experience are required. Must be willing to travel around PA for site visits and meetings on a regular basis.

The purpose of this position is to further the goals of the Bureau of Forestry’s Urban & Community Forestry Program, also known as TreeVitalize. The TreeVitalize Program seeks to educate citizens and increase quality of life for Pennsylvanians in urban/suburban settings through tree planting and tree care work. TreeVitalize helps citizens understand the myriad benefits of planting trees, the importance of keeping existing trees in the community healthy, and the value of sufficient tree canopy. The program also encourages and provides outlets for citizens and municipalities to take action to improve their urban and community forest.

Specifically, the Chesapeake Bay Community Tree Specialist will:

  1. Guide and manage the TreeVitalize program in the Chesapeake Bay region, building partnerships and providing leadership and coordination among the TreeVitalize partners in the bay watershed
  2. Creatively and equitably engage the public and new partners in the Bay
  3. Build capacity for a minimum of 5 cities/towns at the local tree level to provide staffing assistance, ordinance advising, creation of advocacy groups, and creation or updates of canopy plans
  4. Provide strategic input and direction, assistance, and information to the State TreeVitalize staff about work in the Chesapeake Bay region
  5. Planting and survival verification work

Job Duties

  • Connect with local governments, nonprofits, and any other relevant partners in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed to assist with canopy plans and facilitate tree plantings in urban areas (streets and parks)
  • Support 5 cities as a circuit rider “City Arborist” and add more cities when and where needed.
    • Create agreements that will solidify the relationship between this position and those municipalities.
    • Assist municipalities in creating and/or utilizing existing advisory entities such as a Shade Tree Commission or an Environmental Advisory Committee
    • Help the municipalities to facilitate Tree Canopy planning processes
    • Provide assistance and expertise to municipalities to create effective tree ordinances
    • Assist these communities in acquiring more resources and providing grant technical assistance
    • Assist and support partners and municipalities in planning tree plantings with communities either through applications to DCNR’s Community and Watershed Forestry grants, TreePennsylvania’s Bare Root Tree Grants, and/or any other grant programs
  • ­Verification work for our Bay Partners to ensure all planted Urban and Community Trees are being counted towards our Bay Goals
  • ­Envision innovative ways to involve homeowners in tree stewardship on their own property and in their communities
  • ­Work with Tree Equity Specialist to ensure projects and partners are approached in an equitable manner
  • ­Encourage and facilitate use of PA Community Tree Map by partners and communities for tree plantings, maintenance, and tree survival/health Complete annual yearly accomplishment
  • ­Assist with the aggregation and communication of program accomplishments from the partners (trees planted, impervious surfaces removed, inventories completed, volunteers engaged, etc.)
  • ­Support other areas of programming within the Rural & Community Forestry Section, as requested by the Section Chief; Review and comment on written material, as requested by others in the Bureau
  • ­Perform occasional public relations duties, including staffing display booths, presenting to interested groups, and participating in meetings with cooperating public and private agencies
  • ­Attend and participate in appropriate training programs and conferences
  • ­Other duties as assigned

Physical Requirements

  • ­Ability to work outside in occasionally adverse conditions
  • ­Ability to traverse difficult/uneven terrain (with or without reasonable accommodation)
  • ­Ability to transition between office work and field work
  • ­Ability to communicate effectively with diverse audiences
  • ­Ability to legally operate a motor vehicle within Pennsylvania; valid driver’s license, willing to travel extensively throughout assigned region and throughout the commonwealth


  • Knowledge of PA’s natural resource concerns (particularly those facing urban/suburban areas) and urban and community forestry best management practices
  • ­Must be comfortable regularly meeting with public officials and/or the general public to discuss potential projects
  • ­Familiarity with PA native trees
  • ­Public presentation experience
  • ­Strong, well-developed interpersonal skills
  • ­Outstanding planning skills
  • ­Ability to juggle multiple projects at once
  • ­Ability to maintain great working relationships with a variety of stakeholders
  • Well-developed organizational skills- must be able to handle multiple tasks, simultaneous projects and priorities, keep track of many appointments and deadlines, etc
  • ­Excellent work ethic, drive, and motivation to succeed as an individual and as a team-player
  • ­Ability to work successfully with people at all organizational levels and from all backgrounds
  • ­Verbal and written communication skills- ability to effectively meet with, speak with, educate, and present to a wide variety of audiences and individuals
  • ­Ability to manage data/spreadsheets, develop documents, utilize virtual meeting software, etc.
  • ­Administrative responsibilities associated with the duties outlined above
  • ­Must be flexible with schedule; willing to work occasional evenings and weekends as needed

Preferred Qualifications

  • Degrees, certificates, coursework, and/or experience related to Urban Forestry, Urban Planning, Landscape architecture, or other subjects that would be helpful to the position
  • ­Experience using Tree Mapping systems and software or general experience using Geographic Information System (GIS) software applications
  • ­Experience leading public-private partnerships and bridge building with new and existing partners.
  • ­Knowledge of the Chesapeake Bay Region of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
  • ­ISA Certification or other relevant certification
  • ­1-2+ years’ experience working in natural resources or closely related field
  • ­Demonstrated ability to work remotely/with a remote team in an effective and productive manner
  • ­Experience planting trees and conducting maintenance activities on these urban and community tree plantings
  • ­Grant writing and/or review experience


This position's primary location(s): Harrisburg Office (Harrisburg, PA)

Additional Details

Headquartered in Harrisburg, PA with options for remote work from a PA residence in assigned region.


Starting salary will between $47,000-$57,000 with a robust and comprehensive benefits package.

Application Process

Please send a letter, resume, and salary requirements to and list TreeVitalize Chesapeake Bay Community Tree Specialist in the subject line.

Application Deadline

October 7, 2022

COVID-19 Considerations

All WPC/Fallingwater locations are mask friendly, but not required. We are encouraging vaccinations. All employees are required to follow the WPC Covid policy in effect, which is subject to change based on CDC recommendations.

The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer

The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity-Affirmative Action Employer – Minority / Female / Disability / Veteran / Gender Identity / Sexual Orientation / Age.

The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is fully committed to diversity and inclusion. We seek contributors from all backgrounds to join our team. Read our equal opportunity employer statement.