Ranch Assistant

Oregon Desert Land Trust

Fields, OR

Job Type: Full-Time

Salary: $22.75-$27.75 DOE with medical/dental

About Oregon Desert Land Trust

The Oregon Desert Land Trust (ODLT) was formed in 2017 and works with landowners, Tribes, land managers and other partners to conserve private land throughout the region. These wild and working lands are critical to ecological, economic and community health.

Oregon’s high desert is characterized by small towns and working ranches scattered among mountains, rivers, and canyons. Like other areas in the West, the region is experiencing turnover in land ownership, driven in part by inter-generational shifts in the ranching sector and increasing demand for recreational properties. With support from volunteers with decades of experience in real estate, law, ranching, business, and conservation science, as well as our relationships with landowners and knowledge of the region, ODLT has already conserved nearly 20,000 acres.

ODLT is committed to maintaining an inclusive environment. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and voices.

Position Summary

ODLT established one of Oregon’s largest conservation projects by purchasing the 16,645-acre Trout Creek Ranch in the Pueblo and Trout Creek Mountains. The property helps connect more than 1 million acres of wildlife habitat and has livestock grazing permits on nearly 500,000 acres of public land. Partnerships on research efforts and conservation management will help establish regional conservation goals, test innovative stewardship techniques, and develop new, collaborative land management strategies on wild and working lands for wildlife and people.

The Ranch Assistant will help transition Trout Creek Ranch from a commercial farm and ranch to a working lands conservation property in partnership with neighbors and other stakeholders. The primary role of the Ranch Assistant is to support other staff in management plan implementation, habitat restoration, grazing monitoring, facilities repair and development, and volunteer organizing and oversight.

Key Responsibilities

  • Work with ODLT staff, grazing lessees, co-permittees, vendors, and The Nature Conservancy to design and implement the Trout Creek Ranch virtual fence program on Trout Creek private lands and associated public lands.
  • Coordinate with staff, grazing lessee(s) and BLM staff on improving, maintaining, and repairing fences, corrals, and livestock watering facilities.
  • Assist with inventory, repair, and maintenance of residential and farm infrastructure and equipment.
  • Assist with surface and groundwater irrigation.
  • Provide on-site presence and serve as a local contact for neighbors, land managers, and other partners.
  • Assist with mapping, control, and monitoring of invasive and noxious plant species (including herbicide application).

Qualifications / Experience Level Required:

The qualifications required to excel in this position can come from a range of both professional and lived experience. Below we’ve described important qualifications for a candidate but we recognize the diversity of experiences that can create these skill sets. We strongly encourage you to apply if you believe you have what it takes to thrive as ODLT’s Ranch Assistant.
— Experience with natural systems and ecological land management principles.
— Experience with cattle ranch operations, fence construction, maintenance, and repair.
— Ability to operate and maintain farm/ranch equipment and machinery.
— Ability to complete tasks independently and meet deadlines.
— Knowledge of noxious weeds and treatment options.
— Proficient with Microsoft Office, Google Earth Pro, Avenza, OnX and similar data collection and navigation software.
— Must have a valid driver’s license and a clean driving record.

Working Environment
— Regularly required to hike through a variety of habitat types and terrain, walking over uneven ground, climbing over obstacles, and accessing remote locations.
— Regularly required to operate motorized vehicles and equipment such as ATVs/UTVs and 4WD vehicles.
— May use or supervise the use of pesticides and or other chemical substances.
— Occasionally lifts, positions, or otherwise moves objects weighing up to 50 pounds.

To Apply:
Please email a PDF cover letter and resume to info@oregondesertlandtrust.org with “Ranch Assistant” in the subject line. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Additional information about ODLT can be found on our website at www.oregondesertlandtrust.org. You can also subscribe to our eNewsletter to receive updates on our work or read recent articles about our work by visiting the Good Reads section of our website.


Application Closes: When position is filled

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© High Desert Partnership. This site is managed by High Desert Partnership. High Desert Partnership strives to promote collaboration across communities of Southeastern Oregon and is actively engaged in protecting diversity, enacting equity, and fostering inclusion. Our ambition is to contribute to building a sustainable and inclusive community in which ethnic, religious, gender, political and ideological differences are heard and respected.