Chief Operating Officer/Chief Financial Officer – Big Sur Land Trust

Location: Monterey, CA

Reports to & Partners with:  President/CEO

Exemption Status: Exempt

Big Sur Land Trust (BSLT) is a non-profit organization with a mission to inspire love of land across generations, conservation of our unique Monterey County landscapes, and access to outdoor experiences for all. We see a future where natural landscapes, working lands, urban open spaces and healthy communities are cared for by people who share a love of nature and a deep appreciation for the richness of their diverse cultures.

Job Duties and Responsibilities

General Description

In support of the President/CEO’s outward focus, provides executive management to oversee key financial/administrative functions (including HR and IT) while playing a key leadership role in a matrix organizational structure where all the major projects report to the COO as the leader among the senior staff. Directs the day-to-day operations of the Land Trust and facilitates any issues with communications, community relations, marketing and projects.

Specific Duties

Finance — provides direction, manages, and communicates information to board and staff regarding BSLT’s financial services and activities; establishes and administers a sustainable infrastructure for BSLT’s Finance Department;  leads strategic and tactical communications with staff, special committees, board of trustees, auditors, stakeholders and the donor community by interpreting complex financial information, requirements and reports into understandable data; leads the strategic and annual planning process and partners with and supports trustees and staff in developing strategic plans and initiatives; develops budgets and financing strategies. Oversees the Finance department by ensuring all duties and responsibilities assigned (Finance & Accounting, Month-End Responsibilities, Financial Analysis & Budgets and Human Resource and IT Management) are carried out with excellence. Constantly reviews financial performance to identify and strategize on areas requiring improvement.

Administration – ensures that the overall administrative, front office, properties and facilities management and support are effective and efficient under general supervision and in accordance with established BSLT quality standards, teamwork, service standards, and work procedures; responsible for risk management and compliance with applicable legal requirements; serves as chief adviser to the President/CEO on all relevant matters.

Human Resource Management – oversees Human Resources Management administration, ensuring technical and administrative efficiencies and effectiveness of the human resources function in accordance with BSLT policies, procedures, and employee relations standards and in compliance with current laws and regulations established by federal, state and local regulatory bodies.

IT Management – supervises development of IT strategy and implementation based on unfolding organizational needs; communicates with vendors regarding pricing and content of IT services and infrastructure.

Projects – In consultation with the President/CEO, directly manages BSLT’s major project initiatives and engages in projects where his/her efforts will directly enhance and support BSLT goals and objectives; collaborates with Director level staff (Directors of Conservation, Stewardship, Community Projects, and Development) to ensure project strategies, planning efforts, and implementation actions are effective; reviews and approves all project contracts; directs and manages property rental/user fee strategies and outcomes; leads the implementation of the matrix model in support of all projects.


Results — this position requires demonstrated experience in exceeding goals and a bottom-line orientation; evidence of the ability to consistently make good decisions through a combination of analysis, wisdom, experience, and judgment; high level of business acumen, including successful P&L management and the ability to balance the delivery of programs against the realities of a budget; problem solving, project management, and creative resourcefulness.

Strategic Vision and Agility — ability to think strategically, anticipate future consequences and trends, and incorporate them into organizational planning and execution.

Capacity Building — ability to effectively build organization and staff capacity, developing a superior workforce as well as the processes that ensure the organization runs efficiently; ability to interact with Board of Trustees, major donors, and others in support of BSLT’s strategic plan and mission.

Leadership and Organization — exceptional capacity for managing and leading people; a team builder who has experience in organizational alignment and matrix leadership; ability to connect with staff both on an individual level and in large groups; capacity to enforce accountability, develop and empower excellent leaders from the bottom up, lead from the top down, cultivate entrepreneurship, and learn the strengths and weaknesses of the team so as to put people in a position to succeed; provides, by example and leadership, motivation and direction to all employees.

Action Oriented — enjoys working efficiently and effectively and looks for challenges; able to act and react as necessary, even if limited information is available; willing to take charge of a situation; can overcome resistance to leadership and take unpopular stands when necessary.

General Management — comprehensive understanding of finance, systems, and HR; broad experience with the full range of business functions and systems, including strategic development and planning, budgeting, business analysis, finance, information systems and human resources; Ideally has background and experience in non-profits with Land Trust, environmental, community engagement and fundraising.

Land acquisitions/dispositions – Assists in the analysis, strategy development and funds sourcing plans for land and conservation easement transactions.


Required Education, Training and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree (B. A.) from four‑year college or university with major course work in accounting, finance, or a related degree.
  • Minimum of five years successful track record in a similarly responsible position.
  • Must be computer literate and familiar with Excel and all Microsoft Office applications.
  • Must be familiar with accounting software programs; prior experience MIP accounting software would be helpful.
  • Knowledge of current principles and practices of effective leadership and non-profit budgeting and finance.

Desired Education, Training and Experience

  • CPA certificate or Master’s Degree.
  • Experience with facility and/or land operations/management.

Physical and Mental Work Demands

  • Work requires only minor physical exertion and/or physical strain.  Work environment involves only infrequent exposure to disagreeable elements.
  • Coordinate multiple projects with several variables, set realistic deadlines, and manage a
  • Interpret guidelines and analyze factual information to adapt or modify processes in response to changing circumstances.
  • Duties may require non-routine analysis, research and follow through.

There is no relocation for this position. BSLT offers a competitive salary and benefits package, including extensive health plan, medical, dental, vision, and life insurance; and contribution to a 403(b); paid holidays, vacation and sick leave.

Respond to ad with a cover letter, to include salary expectation and a resume to: [email protected]

Download job announcement here.