Friends currently has an opening for a Community Coordinator as well as open positions on its Board of Directors.

Job Opening - community coordinator 

TITLE: Boundary Waters Community Coordinator


REPORTS TO: Executive Director


SUMMARY: The Community Coordinator serves as a liaison to communities that are gateways to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. The Friends recognizes that the successful protection of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and the wilderness areas throughout the Quetico-Superior ecosystem requires the support of communities that are gateways to the wilderness. This position provides the Friends with an on-the-ground presence in Ely, Grand Marais, Duluth and other communities along the North Shore, Gunflint Trail and Iron Range. This position builds relationships with local business owners, teachers and other school officials, labor organizations, other nonprofit and civic organizations, and government and tribal officials to support and advance the Friends’ mission.

An integral part of this position is to identify and participate in activities in Ely and other gateway communities that make for stronger communities, such as local park projects or broadband internet access. This position is intended to reflect the fact that the Friends genuinely cares about the wellbeing of people living in Ely and other gateway communities. This position also supports the Development and Membership staff by facilitating and building relationships with existing and potential donors. This position represents the Friends at local events and serves as a local spokesperson for the Friends.


  • Reports to the Executive Director.

  • Works effectively with other departments, including Communications, Development and Membership, and Operations.

  • Coordinates with and supports policy and legal staff, who will be hired in the upcoming months and located in the Twin Cities office.

  • Serves as a staff liaison to the Boundary Waters Communities Committee that will be comprised of residents from northern Minnesota.


  • Represents the Friends in Ely, Grand Marais, Duluth, and other communities along the North Shore, Gunflint Trail, and Iron Range.

  • Builds and develops new and ongoing support with business owners, schools and local colleges, labor organizations, civic organizations, and public officials.

  • Engages in government relations with federal, state, local, and tribal government officials throughout northeastern Minnesota, including officials at the Superior National Forest.

  • Builds and participates in collaborative relationships with the Friends’ nonprofit partners involved in the fight against copper-sulfide mining in the Boundary Waters and other issues that threaten the Boundary Waters and Quetico-Superior ecosystem.

  • An integral part of this position is to identify and participate in activities in Ely and other gateway communities that make for stronger communities, such as local park projects broadband internet.


  • Bachelor’s degree in Communication, Political Science, Marketing, Conservation, or similar field.

  • Initiative, good judgment, and a strong work ethic.

  • Ability to work independently and in collaboration with staff and outside partners.

  • Ability to develop and maintain partnerships with community-based or other grassroots groups.

  • Ability and willingness to travel frequently and extensively to Grand Marais, Duluth and other communities along the North Shore, Gunflint Trail, and Iron Range.

  • Ability to engage positively with a broad array of people and constituencies

  • Passion for preserving the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and its ecosystem.


  • Paid vacation and sick leave, health insurance, and 403(b) retirement plan.

  • In addition to paid vacation and sick leave, the Friends provides a $300 stipend and five additional paid vacation days to each employee to take time off and recharge in the wilderness.

  • Hours of unpaid leave for parents to attend a child’s school conferences, classroom activities, childcare or any other childhood program.

  • We encourage life-long learning and will pay for ongoing professional development.


Submit a cover letter, resume, three references, and two writing samples to:

Ms. Bree Mattson

Operations Manager

Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness

401 North Third Street, Suite 290

Minneapolis, MN 55401

In the subject line of any electronic communication, please put “Boundary Waters Community Advocate Position.”

Applications will be accepted until filled.

At the Friends, we have a clear vision to be the place where a diverse mix of talented people want to come, to stay, and do their best work. The Friends is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age or veteran status. 

Opening - Board of Director 


The Board of Directors determines the mission, strategic direction, and programming for Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness (“Friends”). A Director ensures and nurtures adequate human and financial resources and actively monitors and evaluates the Executive Director’s performance and the Friends’ financial results. A Director approves and systematically implements policies to ensure achievement of the mission of the Friends.


  • Reports to the Board Chair

  • Works closely with the Executive Director and other staff to ensure the achievement of the mission

  • Works closely with and gets to know other Board and committee members and builds collegial working relationships that contribute to consensus

  • Serves as a spokesperson outside the organization and delivers consistent, compelling messages on mission, programs, and finances, and encourages civic participation 


  • Knows and commits to the Friends’ mission, vision, and values

  • Provides leadership continuity by ensuring Board succession, including identifying, recruiting, and orienting new members

  • Is knowledgeable about Friends’ policies, programs, and operations, and oversees their implementation and evaluation

  • Is accessible and responsive to other Directors and staff

  • Actively seeks out financial and other resources for the organization


  • Engages in strategic planning

  • Approves written policies and procedures governing the work and actions of the Friends’ employees and volunteers

  • Hires, sets the compensation for, and annually evaluates the performance of the Executive Director

  • Reviews the overall compensation structure for staff and establishes policies on employee benefits, vacation, and sick leave 


  • Approve the annual operating budget; at least four times per year assesses the organization’s financial performance

  • Assists in developing fundraising plans and actively participates in fundraising initiatives each year

  • Makes an annual gift to the Friends as circumstances allow. There is no minimum contribution amount, but the Friends should be in a Director’s top three charities for annual giving.

  • Ensure that an internal review of the Friends’ compliance with legal, regulatory, and financial reporting requirements is conducted annually


  • Regularly prepares for, attends, and participates in Board meetings

  • Participates actively in at least one Board committee


  • The Committee Chair presides or assigns someone to preside at all meeting of the respective committee. The Committee Chair has general supervision, direction, and active management of the committee’s affairs, working in partnership with staff and volunteers. The Committee Chair reports to the Board Chair.

Internship Program

There are currently no internship opportunities.