Climate Center Director – Gulf of Maine Research Institute

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) pioneers collaborative solutions to global ocean challenges. Our scientists explore dynamic ocean systems from marine life to environmental conditions to coastal economies. We infuse our discoveries into the policy arena and design solutions with fishermen and seafood business to protect fishery resources, harvest them responsibly, and market them as premium quality food. We share our discoveries with the public and nurture a culture of leadership in communities that depend on the sea. Our education programs cultivate science literacy and build a foundation of collaborative problem-solving among our next generation of leaders, scientists, citizens, and stewards. Each year, we serve over 25,000 stakeholders from Cape Cod to Nova Scotia.

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s (GMRI) new Climate Center aspires to close the gap between advances in climate science and real-world decisions that support a healthy ocean, a diverse marine economy, and resilient coastal communities. Through this new interdisciplinary Center, our staff will demonstrate how to support coastal communities, fishermen, fish farmers, seafood businesses, and marine resource management agencies as they make a profound cognitive leap from reliance on past experiences and historical data to using models to plan future ocean activities and investments and implementation of strategic adaptation and mitigation solutions. The Center seeks to achieve both immediate impact in the Gulf of Maine bioregion and to transfer best-practices to other regions.

The Climate Center Director will have primary responsibility for leading, funding, and managing GMRI’s interdisciplinary climate center strategy and for refining it to meet future needs. They will partner with colleagues and stakeholders internally and externally to identify problems and opportunities to address. They will write funding proposals to support new projects and serve as project manager for cross-organizational initiatives and collaborations with external partners.

The Climate Center Director will be a seasoned, dynamic professional responsible for the programmatic and funding success of the Climate Center and will contribute to elevating GMRI’s global leadership in solving ocean-climate challenges.


The ideal candidate will:

  • Elevate GMRI as a leader in climate change knowledge and problem-solving related to marine resources and the marine economy;
  • Work with internal colleagues and external stakeholders to assess the needs of the Gulf of Maine bioregion and identify leadership opportunities to advance GMRI’s climate strategy and the Climate Center, including:
    • Support, facilitate, and integrate existing climate work at GMRI to maximize impacts;
    • Convene, engage, and facilitate stakeholders to explore, develop, and execute initiatives to meet the challenges climate change presents to the bioregion;
    • Identify and cultivate prospective funders and write proposals to fund new initiatives;
    • Manage complex, large scale, multi-stakeholder, transboundary projects; and,
    • Manage financial risk/opportunities across a mix of funded projects with a variety of partners.
  • Lead strategic communications to staff, board, external partners, stakeholders, and the media about climate initiatives and the evolution of the Center;
  • Develop and implement a strategy to document, evaluate, and publicize the effectiveness of the Center’s projects and products in supporting climate-informed decision-making
  • Seek out and operationalize strategic partner collaborations that augment and complement GMRI’s interdisciplinary capacity, extend the reach and impact of climate center initiatives, and ensure the transfer of knowledge and best practices to other markets and geographies.

Required Qualifications/Attributes

The ideal candidate will have:

  • Deep experience and understanding working in climate change science, policy, business and/or community planning, adaptation and mitigation;
  • Successful track record in fundraising from federal, state, corporate, foundation, and individual sources;
  • Knowledge, sophistication, and entrepreneurial spirit needed to drive early Center momentum;
  • Ability to lead collaborative project teams, including staff, stakeholders and other partners, over the span of various complicated projects and time spans;
  • Strong communication skills, including the ability to translate complex scientific ideas to diverse internal staff, external stakeholders, and the media;
  • Comfort networking with diverse communities, including scientists, industry stakeholders, and business leaders and to work fluidly across sectors and disciplines.

Desired Attributes:

The ideal candidate will have demonstrated expertise and a track record of success in several of the relevant areas below and working familiarity with the remainder:

  • Familiarity with various marine resource application market spaces identified in GMRI’s strategic plan (fisheries management, aquaculture, seafood supply chain, fishing communities);
  • Understanding of marine ecology, economic markets, computer, and predictive modeling, and how the application of knowledge affects ocean policy, business decisions, and social capital;
  • Community leadership experience convening diverse stakeholders to solve complex problems;
  • Business/corporate experience related to sustainability and/or Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) factors for measuring the sustainability and societal impact of an investment or business; and,
  • Ability to ground the work of the Center in established theories around cognitive and social learning, climate communication, and decision science.

Other Preferred Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will have:

  • Advanced degree in a relevant field (e.g., environmental science and economics, climate science and policy, public or business administration, etc.);
  • Minimum of 12 years of relevant work experience;
  • Experience with complex organizational management structures;
  • Proven ability to develop and maintain effective teamwork with coworkers, partners, and stakeholders;
  • Experience working with public and corporate governance entities (e.g., local, state, interstate, federal, and/or international commissions, non-profit boards of directors, for-profit boards of directors);
  • Comfort understanding and using technology;
  • Curiosity and eagerness to be innovative, incorporate best practices and meet organizational needs.

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