Firefighters conducting a controlled burn.

Conservation Land Steward Sought

By Florida's Original NatureCoaster™ Posted on December 18, 2020

Heartwood Preserve Conservation Cemetery is a 41-acre nature preserve with a natural (‘green’) cemetery on a portion of the property. The land is a combination of Longleaf pine flatwoods and cypress wetlands. The Preserve has been historically managed with prescribed fire and continues to be, now balancing the challenges of the wildland-urban interface.

Heartwood Preserve is a small, innovative business with a strong environmental and social ethic. We care deeply about natural burial, Florida’s natural habitats, and the families we serve.

The Land Steward is responsible for the maintenance, care and overall ecological health of Heartwood Preserve’s cemetery and preserve areas, working with the Executive Director to develop and implement the Conservation Management Plan.

Heartwood Preserve seeks Land Steward

The ideal candidate is positive, friendly, hard-working, and self-motivated. This person must have considerable and demonstrable knowledge & experience in the field of natural resources & land management in Florida ecosystems.


  • Overall Ecological Health of Preserve & Cemetery
  • Work with Exec. Director to strategize short- and long-term planning for ecological health
  • Identify and control invasive and nuisance exotic species; supervise feral hog control efforts
  • Identify, protect, and enhance rare and endangered species
  • Work with Director & other crew on Prescribed Burn program
  • Assess & restore impacted areas (burial sites, floodplain ponds, road edges, etc.)
  • Salvage valuable plants from future impact areas (future lakes area, grave sites, etc.)
  • Balance of Ecological Health and Public Interaction
  • Maintain & improve trail system
  • Monitor and tend burial sites & high-use areas for weeds, invasive plants, foot traffic impacts
  • Supervise volunteer workdays
  • Work w/other staff to inform & educate community, e.g. keep information kiosk up-to-date
  • Other programs: Memorial Program (e.g. tree plantings); collection & propagation of native seeds & plants
  • Maintenance of property, equipment, facilities
  • Ensure that property is well-kept (driveway edges, entrance, planted areas, walking paths, parking lot)
  • Supervise Groundskeeper for efficient maintenance of grounds
  • Keep all equipment and tools in working order
  • Keep facilities (Maintenance Barn, kiosk, signs, fences, etc.) clean, orderly, & secure


  • Demonstrable knowledge of Florida ecosystems, particularly Longleaf flatwoods, cypress wetlands
  • Knowledge of nuisance exotic plant species by site
  • Have or be able to obtain related licenses/certifications (e.g. herbicide application, Rx burn crew)
  • Good personality, verbal communication, and supervisory skills; work well independently & within a small team; embrace the mission of Heartwood Preserve; good computer skills


  • H.S. diploma or equiv., plus 4 years of college &/or work experience in forestry, natural resource management, or related field.
  • Must be in good physical condition, able to perform all activities required of the position, including safe operation of typical land management equipment & tools.
  • Must pass criminal & employment background check, have valid DL, provide own transportation.

To apply, send a cover letter, resume, and 3 references to [email protected] All applications are handled with strict confidentiality.

Heartwood Preserve is an equal employment opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or veteran status, or any other legally protected characteristics with respect to employment opportunities.


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