• Share
  • Share

Share this page via

Copy URL

Lead Scientist

Palm Bay, FL 32905
Job Type
Salary: $30,000.00 /year



JOB TITLE: Lead Scientist

CHARACTERISTICS OF THE CLASS: Under the supervision of the Executive Director or Deputy Director, this employee performs a variety of field related duties including supervising the land management work on conservation lands, coordinating, training and supervising citizen scientists collecting water quality as part of the long-standing LagoonWatch program or the short-term groundwater wastewater study in Brevard county. The Lead Scientist is responsible for data management and analysis, mapping, and working with partners to integrate MRC data into larger data interpretation efforts. Must be able to manage multiple, diverse assignments, supervise staff, interns and volunteers and communicate effectively. Must be able to adapt to changes in duties as varying grants and contracts direct activities.

EXAMPLES OF DUTIES: (Not exclusive)

Lead the citizen scientist teams collecting groundwater samples as part of the legislatively-funded, Groundwater Wastewater Study. Recruit, train, and supervise volunteers in the field as they are using a hand, push-probe and peristaltic pump to collect surficial groundwater samples. Ensure the safety of volunteers in the field by providing vigilant oversight, training, and safety equipment. Track volunteer hours as in-kind service. Work with the environmental consultant and the project PI (Leesa Souto) to ensure all citizen science requirements of the project are fulfilled.

Lead the long-standing LagoonWatch citizen scientist team that collects weekly ambient lagoon water quality data. Recruit, train and provide supplies for LagoonWatch volunteers. Work with partners to develop the LagoonWatch database (Modus Operandi, FIT, and AEI); download; clean and quality assure LagoonWatch data; map data and monitoring sites; track volunteer hours, and work with other MRC staff (development, event, etc…) to promote and recognize volunteer contributions. Maintains the cleanliness and organization of the Lagoon Watch Program lab and storage areas.

Supervise the management of conservation lands working in partnership with the habitat restoration employees and other agencies and organizations. Research and develop a plan for submergent and emergent living shoreline restoration projects that includes methods, partners, and funding needs.

Maintain Lagoon House grounds, gardens and shoreline plantings that includes weeding and mulching the native plant garden along the road and the rain garden adjacent to the front doors, removing and composting dead plant materials, picking up and recycling trash as applicable, and keeping parking lots, shorelines and board walk clear of debris. Train and supervise volunteers and the habitat restoration staff to assist with this goal.

Oversees and conducts vegetation management that includes cultivating mangroves and other native plants for shoreline and habitat restoration, working with the Greenway Caretaker to maintain greenhouses at the Greenway, and sea grass planting as needed.

Builds capacity for MRCs Habitat Restoration and Lagoon Research programs through grant and contract proposal writing and partnership.

Evaluates efforts through research and monitoring, sampling, species surveys, GPS data collection, and other methods.


MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Master's degree in biology, ecology, or an appropriate area of specialization and two years of appropriate experience; or a bachelor's degree in an appropriate area of specialization and four years of appropriate experience. Must have proven administrative capabilities that includes field data collection, data management, reporting, and proficient use of ESRI ArcView/ArcGIS products, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint; and Google email and calendar.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Must possess or obtain, prior to employment, a valid Florida Driver’s license or may be required to possess and maintain the appropriate pesticide certification from the University of Florida to apply herbicide in natural areas. See https://pesticideexam.ifas.ufl.edu/

First Aid and CPR certification will be required within 6 months of employment.


Excellent writing and communications skills. Grant writing experience preferred.

Excellent data collection and field research skills.

Excellent knowledge of Florida coastal ecosystems, especially shoreline submergent to emergent habitats (oysters, sea grasses, mangroves, etc...)

Good knowledge of GIS/GPS is preferred.

Good knowledge of herbicide application procedures for vegetation control.

Good knowledge of Florida native and non-native plant and animal species.

Ability to understand and carry out oral and written instructions.

Ability to operate and transport light and heavy equipment and vehicles.

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS: This is very heavy physical work. Must be able to life 35 pounds and work outdoors in Florida weather conditions.

WORK ENVIRONMENT: Work frequently is performed outdoors, and may involve exposure to dirt, noise, moving machinery, fumes, chemicals and extreme weather conditions. Work will require working weekends and evenings as needed.

You can also share this page directly from any apps you have installed on your phone.