Become part of Hawaii’s conservation story

The Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) is a U.S.-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to unite communities to save coral reefs. Working with people around the world—from fishermen to government leaders, divers to scientists, Californians to Fijians—CORAL protects our most valuable and threatened ecosystems.

The Programs team oversees community-driven conservation work and cutting-edge scientific research around the world. We have set an aggressive vision for growth and increased conservation action throughout this decade to address the serious threats affecting coral reef ecosystems and the human communities they support.

CORAL’s Work in Hawaiʻi

CORAL has more than a decade of experience working in the Main Hawaiian Islands on coral reef conservation. Currently, our work focuses on our Clean Water for Reefs Initiative, with an emphasis on preventing land-based sources of pollution from entering streams and groundwater which eventually lead to the ocean.

In West Maui, our work focuses on restoring natural filtration processes within watersheds. We take a “ridge to reef” approach to restore the natural function of an ahupua‘a (watershed) to filter stormwater and absorb nutrients, sediments and other harmful pollutants. At the shoreline (makai), we provide guidance to shoreline property owners, the tourism industry, and Maui County on how to implement reef-friendly landscaping using low impact design (LID) to naturally filter stormwater before it reaches the ocean.

Further mauka in the midslope region, we recently launched a major multi-stakeholder project to restore streams to reduce the amount of sediment and nutrients flowing into the ocean. We are working with farmers, Hawaiian communities, local nonprofits, private businesses, and the government to pilot stream restoration techniques that combine modern technology with native vegetation and traditional agricultural practices, such as wetland taro patches (loʻi kalo). We believe that finding ways to restore the environment that benefits local communities will help us to drive conservation outcomes on a broad scale. We are collaborating with experts to measure the effectiveness of these approaches and we will share these results and implementation procedures to help inform restoration efforts statewide.

Over the next few years, CORAL plans to leverage the success, knowledge and partnerships we have developed through our conservation projects to scale our impact across the Main Hawaiian Islands.

Position Description

CORAL is seeking an exceptional and resourceful leader to join our team on the Island of Maui as Program Manager. The ideal candidate is a highly organized systems thinker who has the ability to unite a diverse suite of stakeholders around saving coral reefs. This role will be vital to ensuring successful execution of conservation strategies within the Clean Water for Reefs Initiative. The Maui Program Manager will work closely with the Associate Program Director at CORAL Headquarters in California and will act as a liaison between Maui field staff and HQ.

This role has four primary focal areas:

  1. Managing and monitoring programmatic activities
  2. Strategy development and program design
  3. Developing partnerships to execute our strategies
  4. Grant and report writing

This position is an exciting opportunity to join a growing team working on cutting-edge conservation strategies that will create lasting benefits for coral reefs in Hawaiʻi and across the globe.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

Managing and monitoring programmatic activities:

  • Act as a liaison between Maui field staff and HQ, supervise contractors and provide guidance and direction to program staff and external partners to implement CORAL’s program strategy
  • Lead day-to-day management of projects, ensuring that program objectives and project deliverables are completed on-time and within budget
  • Measure the effectiveness of activities and use this information to identify opportunities to continuously improve execution of our projects and increase our impact
  • Provide guidance and direction to program field staff, interns and volunteers
  • Assist in the development of program and project budgets

Developing strategy and designing programs:

  • In collaboration with the Associate Program Director:
    • Develop strategies to achieve CORAL’s vision while maximizing synergy among partners and program areas
    • Design program activities to maximize impact and measure results in a way that enables CORAL to learn from its experiences and improve upon our approach

Building partnerships:

  • Develop and maintain partnerships and strategic alliances with community groups, government agencies, local and international NGOs and other partners to enable execution of CORAL’s conservation initiatives
  • Identify outreach and educational opportunities that can help CORAL to achieve our programmatic goals and evaluate which opportunities to invest in
  • As appropriate, coordinate and participate in outreach events that advance program objectives

Writing proposals, educational resources and reports:

  • Assist in identifying funding opportunities and the development of funding proposals
  • Lead the development of specific resources for advancing conservation objectives, including reports, internal programmatic updates and other communications products or outreach materials in collaboration with CORAL’s communications team

The Program Manager will also assist in administrative functions as needed.

Required Qualifications and Skills

The minimum required qualifications at least five years of experience in conservation or resource management, demonstrated success leading community organizing around conservation or resource management issues, and a BA/BS degree in social, biological or physical science. A graduate degree is preferred. Background in stream restoration techniques, low impact design and traditional Hawaiian agriculture is also preferred.

Additionally, the program manager must have:

  • Excellent organizational and prioritization skills, including developing and maintaining project plans, and proven capacity to accomplish complex assignments requiring cross-organizational cooperation
  • Demonstrated ability to synthesize information to formulate a strategy. Expertise in using systems and design thinking approaches to solving problems is strongly preferred
  • Fast learner with proven ability to incorporate new information to improve strategy and solve problems
  • Resourcefulness and ability to work proactively; ability to complete tasks independently, efficiently, and in a timely manner; and the ability to work effectively with a remote team
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills, with the ability to effectively communicate with individuals from a variety of disciplines, cultures and backgrounds
  • Flexibility and willingness to work in situations of flux; ability to work in a fast turn-around environment
  • Strong work ethic and willingness to take ownership for wide-ranging responsibilities while exhibiting the utmost professionalism and discretion
  • Willingness to adjust hours to accommodate the needs of the job
  • Budget and financial tracking experience
  • Experience living and working in the Main Hawaiian Islands is strongly preferred
  • Willingness to work in a home office

Personal Characteristics

  • Commitment to the mission of CORAL
  • Ability to think analytically and problem solve and a willingness to ask questions
  • Commitment to process excellence, efficiency and accountability
  • A sense of humor, commitment to candor and desire to be a part of a collaborative team
  • Patience and exceptional listening skills
  • Energetic, hard-working and a team player
  • Presents a positive, enthusiastic, professional image both internally and externally
  • Discretion with confidential information


A full-time, exempt employee who will work closely with the Associate Program Director at CORALʻs headquarters in California.

Working Conditions

The program manager may work in variable weather conditions, at remote outdoor locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain, coastal and marine environments and vessels, and under physically demanding circumstances that may require considerable physical exertion and/or muscular strain. Work conditions may require international and domestic travel including to remote island areas, the mainland US, neighboring and other islands or nations. Additionally, the work may be performed independently without day-to-day supervision.


Competitive salary and generous benefits that include medical, dental, vision and disability insurance, 401K match, paid vacation and paid holidays.

How to Apply

Please submit in one document with the following items to and include “Maui Program Manager” in the email subject line:

  • A cover letter describing your qualifications and interest in the position (with salary requirements)
  • Resume
  • A writing sample that you wrote within the past two years. This can be a report, grant proposal or article. If you don’t have a current writing sample, please write a brief (1-page) description of the current challenges facing Hawaiʻi’s coral reefs and your ideas on how you would approach uniting 1-2 stakeholder groups to save these reefs.
  • A brief description of how you would structure and prioritize your first 3 months at CORAL. Assume you are about to launch a multi-year, project that involves three CORAL staff who are dedicated to the project, collaboration with various additional CORAL staff on small components of the project, and collaboration with five external organizations. The five external organizations will each complete a different component and will be engaged at different stages of the project. Please do not spend more than one hour on this activity. Provide text or spreadsheets based upon what you think would be helpful. Feel free to highlight questions you would ask to develop an effective plan.

Please note that due to the volume of applications expected, we are not able to respond to each individual applicant. The position will be open until filled, an immediate start date is preferred.


  • Posted On

    October 24, 2017
  • Closing Date

    February 22, 2018
  • Organization

    Coral Reef Alliance
  • Location

  • Position Type

    Full Time
For more information about Coral Reef Alliance and this opportunity please visit our website at, contact us at 4159947693 or via email at

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