lost sierra partnership
*This position has been filled*
Feather River Forest Solutions + Lost Sierra
Food Access & Security
Natural Resource/Environmental Fields, Communications, Public Administration, Public Relations; Ecology/biological sciences; sustainable ag/food systems
Interest in horticulture, permaculture, community development, educaiton
Committed to sustainability and empowerment through education
Writing Skills, interpersonal skills and self-confidence
Ability to work on rugged terrain, field skills, map reading/orienteering
Graphic Design and Website Experience
Openings: 0 of 1
Focus Area: Forestry/Fire
Food Systems, Education & Outreach, Fire Preparedness & Management, Regenerative Agriculture, Ecological Forestry, Climate Mitigation & Adaptation, Watershed Management
Education & Outreach
Goals & Needs
Feather River Resource Conservation District and Lost Sierra Food Project are teaming up to host a Grizzly Corps Fellow. Try your hand in solving two of the most important crises of our time by working a full season on a regenerative agriculture farm and implementing programs that restore forested lands damaged by wildfire.
FIRST HALF OF FELLOWSHIP: FEATHER RIVER RESOURCE CONSERVATION DISTRICT
(SEPTEMBER – MID-FEBRUARY)
Our Goal: Feather River RCD is a special district headquartered in Quincy, California that provides assistance to farmers, ranchers, foresters, and other landowners with techniques to manage the natural resources on their properties, as well as up-to-date scientific and technical information. Our mission is to advocate resource conservation through education and collaborative efforts with willing landowners and organizations that promote economic and ecological sustainability.
Our Background: FRRCD was established in 1954 to address conservation issues pertaining primarily to agricultural production. Resource Conservation Districts exist throughout California and are geographically tied to a particular region. Our District operates a variety of programs including wetland mitigation, fuels reduction, environmental compliance, wildlife surveys, GIS services, prescribed fire, grazing, and reforestation. FRRCD became one of two RCD’s in the state to assemble and implement an “Emergency Forest Response Team” in the aftermath of the 2020/21 North Complex, Beckwourth, and Dixie fires. Our scope of work for this project includes assisting private landowners with fire recovery, which includes dead tree removal, biomass utilization, and tree planting. Our District works closely with Plumas National Forest to implement an array of projects on public lands. FRRCD is a growing organization and is currently expanding capacity to offer services to landowners and resource managers.
Our Challenge: In the last two year, over 60% of Plumas County has been burned by wildfire, with a half million acres of high severity. Without intervention, these lands will convert to snag and brush fields, creating an environment that is increasingly susceptible to larger, more intense fires in the future. These charred landscapes hold less water, increase erosion, alter habitats, and destroy homes and lives. The effects of wildfire extend beyond forests, affecting communities, agriculture production, and local economies. Our District seeks best management practices that will help restore lands and water for future generations.
Your Role: The ideal candidate would work at the intersection of fire recovery and agriculture, helping develop programs that would assist landowners with crop production, ranching, water use, and reforestation. During the winter months, this would be a mostly office based position with regular opportunities for site visits, field work, and community outreach. Office tasks would include research, communication with partners via phone, email, and virtual meetings. Familiarity with ArcGIS software is preferred, but training opportunities will be available. There is also a growing need to develop and expand programs for green waste disposal including biomass and biochar.
Our Team: FRRCD currently has six full time staff and a seasonal field team ranging from 3-8 individuals. We strive to create an inclusive and supportive work environment with a healthy work/life balance. Our projects have a lot of variety; it would not be uncommon to be on a prescribed fire, attend a community meeting, fly a drone, or run a chainsaw in the same week. FRRCD values our employees' personal preferences and attempts to schedule people towards projects that meet their own goals.
SECOND HALF OF FELLOWSHIP: LOST SIERRA FOOD PROJECT
(MID-FEBRUARY – JULY)
Organizational Background: The Lost Sierra Food Project (LSFP) aims to increase local food access for Plumas County residents, prioritizing low income populations, provide workforce development programs, and create educational food and ecological farming opportunities. At the heart of the organization is Rugged Roots Farm, a two-acre educational and production farm where regenerative agriculture techniques are practiced and taught. When a Grizzly Corps member joins our team in February 2022, it will be our fourth season producing food for the community, running educational and job training programming.
Environmental Challenge: According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), agriculture accounts for 10-12% of total global anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gasses. It is not necessary to deplete topsoil and pollute the watershed in order to produce food. We teach and practice regenerative farming practices, methods that reverse climate change by building organic matter and restoring degraded soil biodiversity. Food access, education and regenerative farming create an intersection between community action and environmental practices. On the individual level, addressing climate change can feel incredibly overwhelming, and so our work allows folks to get their foot in the door. In our rural, politically and economically diverse community, this is a non-threatening invitation to tangibly take action against climate change, at least three times a day.
Your Role: As a Grizzly Corps Fellow with Lost Sierra Food Project, you will be hands-on throughout the season on our community-based farm. You will learn the in and outs of the early to mid season tasks on a regenerative farm from starting seeds in the greenhouse, skinning a caterpillar tunnel, to making compost and compost tea, and setting up drip irrigation. Depending on the applicant, LSFP has a variety of opportunities that can be catered to your desired interests, skills and goals, such as taking a leadership role in educational programming, strategic planning, marketing and/or hosting community events.
Capacity Building Projects
For LSFP, the Fellow will be involved in a few capacity building projects that are aligned with the core mission of the organization:
Community Workshops - The Fellow will help organize educational community workshops on our farm through the growing season. They will connect with local partners and do outreach to help spread the word, as well as necessary research to identify certain topics and facilitators.
Formalized Apprenticeship Program - The Fellow will help us build a more formal apprenticeship based on already existing models. The Fellow will support us in researching these other models and determining which makes the most sense for our location and organization. The Fellow will help examine needs and challenges to making this program a reality.
Organizational & Community Highlights
The Lost Sierra is in Northern California where the Sierra Nevada and Cascades converge and the Feather Rivers flow. Plumas County’s quaint communities are surrounded by public lands managed by the Forest Service.
The Lost Sierra is home to the most diverse conifer forests on the planet and some of the highest plant richness of California with over 1,400 species. Bird (>125 species) and mammal (>55 species) richness is among the highest in the state. No need to drive to Yellowstone to see wolves: the Lost Sierra is home to California’s only wolf pack, the Lassen Pack.
The mild winters and long, dry summers of our four-season Mediterranean climate mean we get to play outside year-round. And with an average of only 6 people per square mile – compared to Los Angeles County’s 2,138 – most likely you and your friends will be the only ones around.
Quincy is small-town living at its best: small, affordable town surrounded by public lands, with plenty of mountains, canyons, rivers, and lakes. There is lots to do if you enjoy the outdoors and your destinations will never be busy or crowded. There’s Feather River Foods Co-op (a.k.a. community center), our local brewery “Quintopia”, locally-owned outdoors store “Feather River Outdoors”, and hardly any chain restaurants or businesses. Quincy has been named one of “America’s Coolest Small Towns” (2013) and a “Beautiful, Charming Small Town in Northern California” (2017).
Quincy and surrounding areas offer an abundance of recreational opportunities, including: endless hiking; majestic rivers and lakes for camping, SUP-ing, and boating; world class mountain biking; ski-shoeing, cross country and backcountry skiing; adventurous rock climbing; and more!
Quincy is the county seat, and home to Plumas District Hospital, Feather River College, the Supervisor’s Office and Mt. Hough Ranger District of Plumas National Forest. There are lots of well-educated professionals in the area, and a thriving young adult population. The UC Berkeley Forestry Camp is 8 miles west of Quincy in Meadow Valley. All your grocery shopping, hardware store stops, and cafes with internet hang-out time can happen in Quincy - it’s got all the amenities.
Your Site Supervisor at Feather River Resource Conservation District will be Michael Hall, District Manager for FRRCD. Prior to becoming the District Manager, Michael was a field technician and project coordinator (both with FRRCD) and understands the roles and responsibilities at all levels of operations. He is committed to helping grow both the District and its employees, which includes aligning people’s work with their interests and passions.
Your Site Supervisor for Lost Sierra Food Project is Jessie Mazar. Jessie is a co-director for LSFP and is committed to community development, education, and, of course, providing nourishing food to Plumas County residents. During her free time, you can find her working on odd projects or exploring her backyard on bikes, skis or whatever gear she can find.