Scientists on the Utkholok river

Scientists on the Utkholok river

About Us

The mission of Wild Salmon Center is to promote the conservation and sustainable use of wild salmon ecosystems across the Pacific Rim. We identify science-based solutions to sustain wild salmonids and the human communities and livelihoods that depend on them.

Wild Salmon Center is an international organization with programmatic activities in the Russian Far East, Japan, Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and California. The home office is located in Portland, Oregon in the Jean Vollum Natural Capital Center.

Work with Us

Open Positions

  1. Director of Science
  2. Development Assistant

Volunteers and Interns
Want to make a differnece in protecting some of the most beautiful and diverse ecosystems across the northern Pacific Rim? Check out our volunteer page.

Director of Science

Reports to: Executive Vice President

The Director of Science is an exciting, new position of Wild Salmon Center envisioned as a full-time, regular exempt position eligible for all WSC benefits. The person in this position will build and maintain WSC’s Science Program.  The purpose of the Program will be to: 1) ensure that WSC’s conservation programs are driven by state-of the-art conservation science; 2) integrate the science and conservation planning tools into the organization’s ongoing conservation and advocacy efforts; and 3) assist partners in addressing critical science needs.

The person in this position will maintain and enhance WSC’s reputation and standing as the leading science-based Pacific salmon conservation organization.  S/he will be responsible for interpretation and communication of critical salmon information in innovative ways to develop and prioritize conservation strategies and responses. Because of the breadth of issues covered by the Science Program, s/he will design and supervise work not only with WSC staff, but also subcontractors who can bring specialized expertise to specific policy questions of importance to the organization and its partners.

The Director will develop annual plans and budgets, and work closely with the Development Program to secure funding for critical science supporting WSC’s conservation strategies.

Key Responsibilities and Accountabilities

  • Collaborate with WSC program staff and partners to prioritize and deliver the most appropriate science and technical assistance to each given project or initiative.
  • Cultivate collaborative relationships with agency, academic, NGO and private-sector peers to provide guidance and access to the best available science.
  • Provide counsel and develop WSC responses regarding threats, best management practices, harvest and escapement targets, approaches to hatchery reform, etc.
  • Work with WSC’s Communications Program to develop science communications, using a variety of approaches, which effectively educate and motivate target audiences on key salmon conservation issues. 
  • Work with WSC's Development Program to secure funding for the Science Program and priority science initiatives.

Position Requirements

  • Standing in the conservation science community; professional and academic stature and relevant publications.
  • Well-versed in the area of habitat science and practical experience and demonstrated expertise using science and planning tools to protect and restore salmon populations.
  • Active participation in and familiarity with salmon conservation initiatives, as well as the role of science in setting habitat and fishery policies and ensuring protection and restoration of critical habitat/ecosystem functions.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills; effective, diplomatic and friendly communication style and ability to translate complex science and conservation issues into clear and understandable language to diverse audiences.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills, including proactively developing new initiatives, and ability to negotiate, influence, and collaborate with a variety of stakeholders within the natural resource conservation and management community.
  • Flexibility regarding travel and hours; this position requires domestic and international travel up to 20% of the time, often for several weeks at a time in Russia, Alaska, British Columbia or the continental US.
  • Passion and commitment to the conservation of wild salmon and their ecosystems.
  • Russian language skills a plus, but not required.


Advanced degree in Fisheries, Conservation Biology or related field (Ph.D. preferred).


The total compensation package is comprised of a competitive salary commensurate with experience and qualifications, and a comprehensive benefits package including: medical and dental coverage, generous paid time off benefits, retirement plan match, HRA, and a flexible spending account.

To Apply:

Send cover letter, resume and list of references to with "Director of Science" in the subject line. Application Deadline: March 16, 2015.

This job description is not an employment agreement or contract.  Management has the exclusive right to alter this job description at any time without notice.

Development Assistant

Reports to: Development Manager

The Development Assistant is an exciting, new position of Wild Salmon Center’s Development and Communications team who works closely with other members of the staff to help achieve the organization’s fundraising and strategic goals. The person in this position is responsible for managing the organization’s database, assisting with the Special Events program, and conducting prospect research for major donors and foundations. The position is envisioned as a part-time, 20 hour/week (0.5 FTE) nonexempt position and may include evening and weekend hours, plus some regional travel for WSC outreach and fundraising events.

Responsibilities and Qualifications Summary

The ideal candidate will be a conservation professional with a demonstrated record of accomplishment in providing scientific advice to influence local, state or federal natural resource issues.  S/he will be mission-driven, possess partnership-building and communication and fundraising skills, and have the ability to negotiate, influence, and collaborate with both internal and external stakeholders.   Relevant experience working successfully on landscape-scale conservation initiatives regarding salmon or related issues is strongly preferred, including involvement in developing bi-partisan policy and legislation.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Administer the organization’s database and be responsible for its day-to-day operations.  Responsibilities include: data entry and updates, building and generating reports, maintaining data quality, and managing database procedures.
  • Assist the Development Manager with WSC’s special events program, including researching and coordinating vendors, helping design and send invitations and other collateral, monitoring local calendars for tabling opportunities, tabling at smaller local events, and helping facilitate larger events like house parties and galas, as needed.
  • Assist in drafting and editing grant proposals and reports, acknowledgment letters, cover letters, fundraising appeals, and e-news bulletins.
  • Conduct research on Major Donor, Board and Foundation prospects, and new fundraising strategies, platforms and vendors
  • Assist with social media integration for fundraising appeals, events, and special offers.
  • Help design and order Development promotional gear and supplies.
  • Administer the Gift Processing and Acknowledge process, including mailing thank-you letters and donor recognition items and keeping donation records.
  • Help assemble applications for special fundraising opportunities including regional giving guides and federal campaigns.
  • Organize and execute in-house mailings for annual reports, event invitations, and donor proposals as needed.
  • Serve as liaison between Development and Accounting and IT departments and perform related duties which include monthly reconciliation of gifts, annual reconciliation with auditors, tracking outstanding pledges and payments.
  • Assist in the oversight and training of Development volunteers and interns.
  • Maintain the Development department’s hard copy and electronic filing systems.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Position Requirements

  • Some non-profit experience preferred.
  • A strong interest in non-profit fundraising, database management, and event planning.
  • Experience with development databases preferred.
  • Outstanding attention to detail, a high level of organization, and ability to effectively manage multiple projects at once.
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills.
  • Comfortable working in a highly cooperative and team-oriented environment.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office software and Gmail.
  • Flexibility to work some night and weekend hours and travel for events, as needed.
  • Enthusiasm for the mission of the Wild Salmon Center and passion for conservation.


The compensation package includes a competitive hourly salary, commensurate with experience and qualifications, and includes pro-rated sick and vacation paid time off, as well as education and training benefits. Tri-Met tickets are provided for public transportation.

To Apply:

Send cover letter, resume and list of references to with "Development Assistant" in the subject line.

This job description is not an employment agreement or contract.  Management has the exclusive right to alter this job description at any time without notice.

Wild Salmon Center is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer.