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Coordinator, Newfoundland Breeding Bird Atlas


The Newfoundland Atlas Coordinator reports to the Atlantic Director and works with BSC staff, an Atlas Advisory Committee, and partners to implement a feasibility study for a Newfoundland Breeding Bird Atlas; and to actively lay the groundwork for oversight, development, coordination, and delivery of the Atlas.  Primary responsibilities in subsequent phases will be to develop, coordinate, and deliver all aspects of the Newfoundland Atlas.


The Atlas Coordinator’s primary role in the startup phase is to assess the prospects and challenges of initiating a breeding bird atlas project on the island of Newfoundland.  This scoping work includes assessing and establishing partnership arrangements with government, NGO, and industry; evaluating and engaging volunteer networks of citizen scientists; convening science and technical experts; and developing a funding and operations strategy for the project.

Specifically, in the startup phase, the Atlas Coordinator will work with the Atlantic Director, other BSC Staff, and the Atlas Advisory Committee, to:

  1. Reach out to and obtain support (whether monetary or otherwise) and endorsement from partners (especially government, ENGO, industry).
  2. Develop a strategy/operating plan for implementing the Newfoundland Breeding Bird Atlas.
  3. Develop a financial plan and fundraising strategy, network with potential funders, and fundraise for next Phases of the NL Atlas.
  4. Coordinate regular meetings of the Atlas Advisory committee.
  5. Convene science and technical experts from BSC and the Canadian Wildlife Service to assess complementary survey methods and approaches that will be required to address the range of conditions expected across the Island, e.g., standard atlassing methods using volunteers, acoustic recordings, eBird, paid crews, and CWS’s Boreal monitoring strategy.
  6. Establish and develop a network of volunteer Regional Coordinators and volunteer atlas participants (and assess the adequacy of volunteer participation and expected coverage).
  7. Document findings from the scoping work in clear and concise written reports that will help in deciding whether to proceed with an atlas in Newfoundland.

Pending approval for subsequent Atlas phases, the Atlas Coordinator will also:

  1. Coordinate, recruit, and support the network people needed to deliver an atlas, including Regional Coordinators, Atlas participants, funders, and other project supporters. This includes establishing goals for atlas coverage and recruiting Atlas participants through multiple media streams (print, web, radio etc).
  2. Develop and distribute Atlas volunteer participant materials, including Guide for Atlassers, Guide for Regional Coordinators, Species at Risk Guide, Newsletter, and all data forms.
  3. Train and motivate Regional Coordinators and Atlas participants through workshops, atlassing “blitzes”, visits, presentations to naturalist clubs, or other appropriate means.
  4. Coordinate participant data entry and work with BSC’s Database Manager and data subcommittee to seek out additional data sources for the Atlas database
  5. Develop and maintain material for the Atlas website, with BSC staff.
  6. Help develop databases and GIS infrastructure associated with the Atlas, including maps, background material, and analyses
  7. Hire and supervise Atlas Technicians (eg. field crews, interns, students) as funding permits
  8. Fundraise for the project with direction and help of other BSC staff
  9. Oversee data checking and review and prepare final results for web and/or print publication


Master’s of Science in biology or comparative field, or demonstrated equivalent work experience.


Experience managing conservation and research programs is essential, as is experience in managing volunteers.  Experience in developing and using various wildlife monitoring methods and sampling design is also a must.  The position requires a highly motivated team player, with a positive and creative outlook and with excellent communication skills (written and oral, including public speaking).  Also required are skills in volunteer and staff management; ability to meet deadlines; computer, analytical and database management skills; and competence with microsoft programs.  Demonstrated fundraising ability, including a track record of successful funding proposals, will be an asset.  The coordinator should also be broadly familiar with the birds of Newfoundland, geography and habitats of Newfoundland, and the Newfoundland birding community.  A valid driver’s license is required.


The Atlas Coordinator is responsible for developing an annual operating plan and budget (up to ~ 200K/a), fundraising to support the atlas, and, with support from the Atlantic Director, managing and tracking program expenses against an approved budget.


The Atlas Coordinator is responsible for managing any seasonal staff (field technicians) associated with the project.  Also the Coordinator will lead and support Regional Coordinators and volunteers.


The Coordinator regularly interacts with multiple partners, government, industry, and members of the public.  The Coordinator’s ability to work with these groups to obtain positive results and constructive dialogue is key to the effectiveness of the atlas.  The Coordinator’s ability to represent BSC professionally in a myriad of situations, including with opposing viewpoints or in other challenging circumstances, is important to the integrity of BSC.  The Coordinator may have responsibility for seasonal staff that s/he directs.  As well, some volunteer activities may occur during evenings and in urban areas, where safety considerations are high priority.


This position will require some travel for meetings with partners, volunteers, citizen scientists, and potentially to conduct workshops or other outreach events.  Work schedule will generally follow a regular workday, except on occasions when evening or weekend work for workshops may be required.  Travel may occasionally require an overnight stay.  Opportunities for fieldwork, with associated evening or weekend work, may exist for subsequent atlas phases.


The position is based in St. John’s, Newfoundland, although alternative NL locations would be considered.


Those interested should send their resume (including at least 2 references) before 31 December 2018 to:

Laura McFarlane Tranquilla

Director, Atlantic Programs

Approved 30 October 2018


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