Project Coordinator

Environmental Initiative

Environmental Initiative is a nonprofit organization that catalyzes collaboration across perspectives, power, and systems for social equity and environmental health. Read more about our work on our website.


Environmental Initiative was founded nearly thirty years ago to bring together unlikely allies to find creative solutions to complex environmental challenges.In recent years, we’ve recognized that all environmental issues are interwoven with issues of economic vitality and social equity.This has led us to work directly with members of the community to reach the neighbors, farmers and organizations whose voices have rarely been invited to be a part of the solution.In the context of our agriculture program, this means working with:

  • Conventional row crop and livestock farmers interested in conservation practices

  • Organizations that serve farmers, such as agricultural retailers, lenders, local government, etc. that have a vested interest in a more profitable and sustainable agricultural sector

  • Rural communities that depend on the agricultural system for their economic well-being and local natural resources for their quality of life and health

The agriculture program partners with farmers, businesses, environmental advocates, policy makers, and other key stakeholders to limit environmental impacts of production agriculture.Byworking together – across sectors and interests – we can achieve more effective and longer lasting solutions for a healthy environment, a prosperous economy and an equitable society.

Project Summary

This position’s primary focus will be The Northside Safety N.E.T. project.

The Northside Safety N.E.T. (Neighborhoods Empowering Teens) is a collaborative and systems-change approach to addressing disparate environmental impacts and empowering at- risk teens of color in North Minneapolis. The partners in this collaborative will leverage their existing resources and expertise to develop and implement a year-long training for a cohort of ten youth (ages 16-24), around community service, environmental stewardship, leadership, life skills training, workforce development, and civic engagement from an environmental justice lens. The main objectives are to:

  • Authentically integrate young people in local conversations and movements to address environmental justice issues identified by the Northside Green Zone task force

  • Raise the environmental literacy and practical skills of young people to create a new generation of environmental stewards

  • Increase exposure to and interest in careers related to the environment, sustainability and green enterprises

Environmental Initiative is the project administrator for Northside Safety N.E.T. The program itself is currently in the design phase. The Project Coordinator will work closely with the Associate Director, Food and Agriculture to finalize details of program design for the youth cohort to begin in late summer.

Position Summary

The Project Coordinator will be responsible for managing and implementing the Northside Safety N.E.T. project. This will involve communicating and coordinating with host sites and youth participants on day-today activity logistics, finalizing and adapting project plans for youth engagement, and facilitating weekly youth cohort activities. Most activities will be located in North Minneapolis with a consistent weekly schedule. This position reports to the Associate Director, Food and Agriculture and will work closely with them to help develop and design the project plans and maintain partner relationships. The Project Coordinator will have an evaluative mindset, sharing lessons learned with the team and adapting programming for continuous improvement.

During the school year the youth programming will take place tentatively on Thursdays from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.; in the summer, youth programming hours will tentatively be Thursdays and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. The Project Coordinator will be responsible for planning and arranging for facilitation of the sessions and ensuring host sites and youth are prepared for the weekly activities. A majority of the sessions will be facilitated by partners from the host sites. The youth programming will begin in the fall of 2021 and end in the fall of 2022.

In addition to the Northside Safety N.E.T. project, the Project Coordinator will provide coordination and support for the agriculture program across several projects including The Headwaters Agriculture Sustainability Partnership, Dakota County’s Agriculture Chemical Reduction Effort, and several watershed-based partnerships.


This is a full-time position beginning in July 2021 with an annual salary of $40,000 plus benefits.

Environmental Initiative offers a flexible benefits package, including a group health care plan, dental insurance, transit benefits, HSA and FSA accounts, life insurance, long-term disability coverage, and a 403(b)-matching program. Environmental Initiative also embraces a flexible working environment, with the option to work remotely and determine a regular work schedule that accommodates individual staff members’ needs and preferences.


Project Coordination

  • Northside Safety N.E.T.

    • Manage day-to-day communication with host sites and youth participants

    • Ensure partners and youth are prepared for each week’s activity

    • Provide and prepare any necessary materials prior to activity o Organize and

      manage general logistics for programming

    • Arrange transportation, timing, meeting locations, etc. for each week’s


  • Communicate with external partners, support formal communications about the project, develop and execute work plans, etc.

  • Collaborate with internal team members to support other project activities including meeting design, synthesizing information, designing and developing partner engagement strategies, etc.

Youth Engagement for Northside Safety N.E.T.

  • Facilitate weekly activities with the cohort employing youth engagement strategies and methods

  • Provide mentorship and coaching to the youth cohort throughout the project through direct interaction, leading by example, and connecting youth with other professionals who can serve as mentors

Project Planning

  • Northside Safety N.E.T.
    • Collaborate with host sites and other Environmental Initiative staff to design project activities

    • Research and identify best practices for youth engagement strategies and tactics; incorporate into project activities

    • Refine and adapt weekly plans to respond to youth needs and interests, host site needs, weather, and other variables

Organizational Development

  • Participate in Environmental Initiative’s organizational development opportunities

  • Identify and share lessons learned from project with internal team and project partners

  • Participate in professional development opportunities relevant to improving skills for the execution of Project Safety N.E.T. and general project coordination

Desired Experience

  • Relevant Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent combination of education and experience

  • Experience designing and implementing youth development activities, especially with high school aged youth and a focus on environment and agriculture

  • Strong youth / young adult engagement skills

  • Ability to coordinate people and multiple project pieces

  • Organized, thorough, and accountable in managing logistics and project details

  • Cultural competency and community connections, particularly related to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color in North Minneapolis

  • Effective communicator comfortable with facilitation, public speaking, and written communications

  • Experience, knowledge of, and interest in the environment, public health, urban and local food systems

  • Ability to navigate ambiguity, uncertainty, and comfortable with experimenting with innovative project design

  • Creative problem solver and solution oriented

  • Self-starter, with the ability to work independently and be self-guided

  • Interest in and willingness for learning, giving/receiving feedback, and personal and professional development

  • Enjoys working with youth and the balance of both office work and getting hands in the dirt

  • Brings whole self to work, eager to join a team with humor and laughter

Physical Requirements

The Project Coordinator will be required to travel to host sites located in North Minneapolis, and to be physically present for in-person youth activities. Access to a vehicle is not required but could be an asset. Transporting materials, tools, or equipment up to 50 lbs. may be required. Communicating with youth participants, Environmental Initiative staff, and host site partners via email, phone, text, and Microsoft Teams is expected. Many working sessions will take place in outdoor settings, in year-round weather conditions, and may involve gardening or other hands- on activities. All program activities will follow CDC and Minnesota Department of Health guidelines related to COVID-19. Computer work and internal meetings will take place remotely for the foreseeable future for all Environmental Initiative employees.

How to Apply

To apply, please submit the following to with “Project Coordinator” in the subject line.

  • Your resume

  • Your responses, in 250 words or less for each question

    • What excites you most about this job

    • What are the most important attributes you’ll bring to Environmental Initiative and this position?
    • Optional: What words do you use to describe your racial identity? Is there anything else you would like us to know about any other identities you hold?*
  • A written plan (one page maximum) for a two-hour youth experience focused on one of the following topics. This is a chance to show off your creativity and youth engagement skills!
    • Environmental policy, urbanagriculture,waterqualityorforestry

Attention: Haley Burns, Associate Director, Food and Agriculture Environmental Initiative
211 North First Street, Suite 250
Minneapolis, MN 55401

The position will remain open until filled with initial screening of applications starting on June 1, 2021.

Interested applicants are encouraged to visit our website to learn more about Environmental Initiative’s hiring practices.

*Environmental Initiative is committed to building and sustaining a staff team that reflects the knowledge, experience, and skills needed to create impactful change aligned with our organizational vision, mission, values, and strategic direction. This includes efforts to diversify the racial makeup of our staff team, as well as efforts to include and appreciate perspectives and experiences that each staff member uniquely brings. All identifying information, including racial or other identities, will be removed from the application materials that the hiring team reviews.