Position Announcement

JOB TITLE: River Base Manager

REPORTS TO: Rocky Mountain Director of Operations Manager

JOB OBJECTIVE:  An exciting opportunity to lead all aspects of NOLS River Base operations in accord with the NOLS mission and strategic goals. Work to ensure program quality and promote student and staff opportunities and learnings. Act as NOLS’ representative in all aspects of operating in Vernal, Utah from land management and community relationships, to program supervision and course operational support. 

QUALIFICATIONS: A deep understanding of NOLS’ philosophy, mission and values is essential as is a deep belief in the power of a NOLS student experience. Excellent oral and written communication skills, self-motivation, problem-solving and team-building skills, and dedication are required. Able to work independently and lead under stress. Able to work closely with others and manage positive public relations across broad audiences. Must have interest in working both collaboratively and autonomously. NOLS whitewater instructor with experience and knowledge of the River Base’s operating areas is desirable. Strong supervisory skills are necessary. 

LEADERSHIP OR SUPERVISORY DUTIES: Develop and execute vision and tone to support all Rocky Mountain river sections and stand alone courses. Oversee all aspects of the River Base program including staff hiring, training, supervision and career path support. Responsible for the oversight of 5,500 river student days and 300 river students. Provide logistical and operational support to other Rocky Mountain students through evacuation support and/ or course use of River Base facility. Oversee risk management and work with Rocky Mountain evacuation team for field evacuation support and challenges. 

FUNDS AND/OR PROPERTY: Responsible for the River Base annual budget of approximately $400,000 in expenses and $55,000 in sales. Responsible for all NOLS River Base assets and inventories including the operation and maintenance of the River Base facilities, vehicles, and all equipment. This position will have signature authority on all relevant accounts, oversee petty cash and be responsible for accounting.  


  • Create an inclusive, welcoming and empowering environment for faculty, staff and students.
  • Hire, train, supervise, develop, and evaluate a team of 5-10 in town staff members, season dependent.
  • Plan operational activities including staff structure, logistics, program scheduling, and long-term budgets, for a February through November operating calendar. 
  • Actualize the opportunity for a rewarding experience for students by providing accurate pre-course information, outstanding student service, a welcoming atmosphere, quality program, and incorporation of student feedback.
  • Assure high-quality supervision through effective training, accurate briefings and debriefings, honest growth-oriented evaluations and responsiveness to feedback.
  • Risk management oversight, including field safety reports and evacuation supervision (and prevention thereof). 
  • Work with student discipline and separations including intervention and family contact.
  • Public policy oversight, including launch date maintenance and acquisition. Responsible for the maintenance of river permits and maintaining strong relationships with land managers. Stay abreast of current challenges that effect and/ or impact River Base operating areas. 
  • Indirectly supervise the acquisition, maintenance, and safety of campus, vehicles, equipment and supplies.
  • Strive to make the NOLS River Base a dynamic and fulfilling place to work. 
  • Assure compliance with UT laws and business procedures.
  • Act as the NOLS representative to the public, including the local community, government officials, and other business contacts.
  • Develop NOLS’ position as a valued and respected member of local communities through providing access to NOLS’ education, and participating in local conversations on education, leadership, and conservation.
  • Build and maintain relations with other NOLS departments, locations, and world headquarters.
  • Teach NOLS field and classroom courses if desired and qualified.

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY: NOLS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, genetics information, disability unrelated to job or admission requirements, or status as a protected veteran. The school’s nondiscrimination policy applies to all phases of its employment process, its admission and financial aid programs, and to all other aspects of its educational programs and activities. Retaliation directed to any person who pursues a discrimination complaint or grievance, participates in a discrimination investigation, or otherwise opposes unlawful discrimination is prohibited.

CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECK: A criminal background check is required from all NOLS employees. 

E-VERIFY: NOLS Participates in E-Verify.

MOTOR VEHICLE RECORD: Applicants must be at least 21 years of age by the position start date and possess a valid driver’s license. Must have a clean driving history and be able to meet the criteria for NOLS vehicle insurance coverage.

WORK LOCATION: Vernal, Utah. This is a full time, benefitted position. Housing is available on site. 


Send Cover Letter and Resume to: Katie Craig.

Email: katie_craig@nols.edu

Phone:  (307) 332-1410

Contact: Jen Sall, Rocky Mountain Director with questions- jen_sall@nols.edu



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