Ocean Career: Calusa Waterkeeper

Calusa Waterkeeper Inc. is a grassroots non-profit organization driven by the passion of our community, members, donors, sponsors, staff, and Board who understand the critical need for good water quality in Southwest Florida. Our mission is to protect and restore the Caloosahatchee River from Lake Okeechobee to the coastal waters.

Our primary objective is to take a scientific approach to monitoring, reporting, and fighting for drinkable, fishable, swimmable water.

Southwest Florida is a coastal paradise. Our ecosystem depends on clean, clear quality water to remain an iconic tourist destination and ideal place for waterfront living. Residents and visitors alike deserve a safe healthy place to enjoy the beaches, estuaries, and our beautiful environment. We seek a motivated individual to join our team as the Calusa Waterkeeper, who will be the lead advocate for our organization, the waters we are fighting for, and the health of the community we serve.

Calusa Waterkeeper is a member of the international Waterkeeper Alliance, which consists of over 300 member organizations around the world dedicated solely to clean water. In keeping with Waterkeeper Alliance guidelines, the person in the Calusa Waterkeeper position will be the primary spokesperson communicating with the media and the public to represent the watershed and the organization’s positions on water issues. Other organizational staff, identified by their titles, also speak to the media, and engage in public speaking events, but the Waterkeeper is the primary spokesperson for the watershed.

The Calusa Waterkeeper is a part-time position but will transition to full-time following a 90-day provisional period.

The following is a listing of responsibilities and qualifications of the person in the Calusa Waterkeeper role.


The Calusa Waterkeeper shall:

  1. Serve as primary organizational spokesperson for the watershed.
  2. Work with Board and other staff to disseminate information about the organization and its programs.
  3. Increase capacity of a high-profile, watercraft-based presence on waters within the organization’s jurisdiction. This includes conducting field work and collecting scientific data and managing and supervising volunteer “Rangers” for the same purpose.
  4. Recognize, classify, document, and prioritize threats to water quality and its impact on public health within the organization’s jurisdiction. Notify appropriate authorities, media, and the public regarding the need for further investigation and potential policy and/or enforcement changes.
  5. Support the Board and staff in fundraising efforts.
  6. Appear before and submit written comments to public and private forums addressing water quality issues of concern.
  7. Provide support to the organization’s programs and events and the volunteers and Board members directly involved with the programs and events.
  8. In collaboration with the Board and other staff, prepare a work plan for the organization that will identify priority initiatives for the year.
  9. Serve as the organization’s representative to, and be governed by all requirements of, the Waterkeeper Alliance.
  10. Attend meetings of the Board as a non-voting participant and take part in committee meetings as appropriate for the position.
  11. Assume such other duties as mutually agreed upon.



  • Training and/or experience in the scientific issues involved in water quality and public health
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the policy issues facing stewards of clean water
  • Boots on the ground experience with the issues facing the organization
  • Good written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to manage complex issues simultaneously


  • Leadership abilities
  • Collegial attitude, particularly with regard to staff and members of the Board
  • Experience, knowledge, collaborative efforts with other organizations and the ability to operate in the world of non-profit advocacy organizations
  • Values and respects the work of other team members
  • Advocacy at the local, state, and federal level
  • Litigation strategy participation as necessary
  • Adept with collaborative office software and remote working tools

Learn more about this opportunity and how to apply.

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