Regional Program Manager – Seattle, WA

Regional Program Manager – Seattle, WA

About Big City Mountaineers

At Big City Mountaineers, we work alongside the transformative powers of nature to foster a lasting impact in the lives of youth from disinvested communities. BCM creates opportunities for 12 to 18 year-olds to connect with nature and realize their own sources of strength, resilience, confidence, serenity and joy by providing free, fully outfitted, and professionally led outdoor experiences. BCM’s programming culminates in a weeklong backcountry trip, which is often the first time the youth we serve experience the outdoors in such a way. The BCM experience enables youth to take on healthy and relevant challenges and cultivate a connection to themselves, their community, to nature, and to joy. 

For over thirty years, BCM’s programming has shown staying power beyond the norm, and has come to be a recognized and highly regarded national nonprofit that is supported by a stable operating budget.  BCM is at an exciting point in its history, one that holds great potential and opportunity to reimagine how the organization can best deliver on its mission. Our team includes a dedicated staff, seasonal trip instructors, and volunteers. 

Though we are headquartered in Colorado, Big City Mountaineers’ regional hubs touch both coasts, and several locations in between. We are located on the ancestral territories the Ute, (Denver, CO), the Sioux and Anishinibawaki (Minneapolis, MN), the Ohlone, Ramaytush, Chochenyo, and Muwekma (San Francisco Bay Area), the Duwamish (Seattle, WA), the Massachusett and Pawtucket (Boston, MA), and the Muscogee Creek and Shawnee (Birmingham, AL).

Position Overview

The Seattle Regional Program Manager (RPM) is responsible for all aspects of BCM programming based out of the Seattle/Tacoma region. This includes delivering high quality and mission focused day trips, overnights, and weeklong backcountry expeditions for youth affiliated with partnering youth agencies in the region. To see this realized, RPMs hire and support seasonal instructors, coordinate program logistics, collaborate with partner agencies, manage a regional budget and occasionally facilitate programs directly. RPMs are supported directly by and report to BCM’s National Program Director.

The Seattle RPM will work from a home office, and will need to be physically located in or near both the city and surrounding public lands where outdoor programming is held. RPMs can expect to travel regionally to meet with youth and partners, 3-5 times per year to the BCM headquarters in Colorado for professional development and national team meetings, and possibly to other regions to assist with pre-season instructor orientations.

More specifically, Regional Program Managers’ essential duties include:

Community Engagement

RPMs develop and maintain relationships within the communities we work. This centers on establishing and maintaining partnerships with appropriate youth serving agencies, volunteers, and other local BCM supporters in their regions. RPMs will conduct  outreach, set expectations and negotiate partnership agreements with youth agencies, organize promotional or recruitment activities, and occasionally support fundraising efforts in collaboration with the other members of the BCM team.

Program Design, Delivery, and Evaluation

RPMs are responsible for facilitating high quality outdoor programs that are consistent with BCM’s standards and mission, and ensure that programming is relevant to our youth agency partners. To this end, RPMs oversee and orchestrate program logistics such as securing food, transportation, and any necessary permits or reservations to ensure trips happen in an efficient and cost-effective way. RPMs are additionally expected to select, hire, train, and manage a team of instructors and work with the Volunteer and Operations Coordinator to engage volunteers in their region. In some cases, RPMs will have the opportunity to engage and support a seasonal regional coordinator who will assist with administrative and program logistics.  RPMs are supported by BCM’s national team in these efforts. 

RPMs will also collaborate as a national team to design, codify, improve, and systematize BCM’s program model, as well as measure the efficacy of various program elements during the months when programs are not active.  Throughout, RPMs will maintain clear and consistent communication with various stakeholders in their region and colleagues internally, promoting a culture of safety and inclusion that centers’ youth and partner agency’s expeditions needs.  

Risk and Safety Management

RPMs are expected to actively manage risk as it directly and indirectly applies to outdoor programs. During the program season this includes reviewing relevant information on student registration forms, waivers, and other key documents, conducting thorough pre-trip briefings and post trip de-briefings with instructors and volunteers, equipment inspection and management, serving as an on call resource for programs in the field, and managing emergency and incident response procedures with the support of the broader BCM team. 

During the fall, winter, and spring months, RPMs are expected to work collaboratively with the national program director to recognize and address gaps in any safety protocols as well as develop or update risk management trainings for field instructors and volunteers. 

Program Administration

RPMs keep accurate records of programs, participants, and events using BCM’s data management systems. This includes inputting and tracking student and adult participation in programs using Salesforce, and administering surveys and assessments. 

RPMs work collaboratively with the program team and executive director to create a budget for their region and are responsible for staying within that budget throughout the year. 

Role Requirements

  • Personal and professional values consistent with BCM’s mission, values, and principles, including principles of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • High degree of motivation to increase access to the outdoors for youth from disinvested communities, 
  • Unwavering belief in the power of nature-based experiences to help youth strengthen life skills and build community
  • Residence in or near Seattle/Tacoma
  • Prior professional experience working with youth from disinvested communities and racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse groups, ages 12-18, preferably in outdoor, educational, or outdoor education settings
  • Personal or professional experience, familiarity, and comfort in backcountry and outdoor settings
  • Demonstrated experience in outdoor program development, facilitation, and management
  • Demonstrated experience representing an organization to external partners and managing partner relationships and formal working agreements
  • Training and experience managing and responding to physical, emotional, and situational risks inherent in youth outdoor programs
  • Willingness and ability to travel locally to meet in-person with agency partners and regionally to Headquarters in Colorado as job and duties require
  • Current WFR or WMET and CPR certification or ability to attain one within 60-days of employment start date
  • Clean driving record and reliable transportation 

Additional Qualifications

  • Familiarity with the local communities BCM works in, and the natural areas BCM utilizes on its courses
  • Ability to work both collaboratively and independently, and to know when each is required 
  • Interpersonal awareness, ability to cultivate trusting interpersonal relationships and connect with people across lines of difference
  • Demonstrated ability to manage administrative details, including maintaining accurate and complete data
  • Experience serving in an on-call capacity
  • Ability to communicate clearly and effectively in multiple formats (written and verbal) and to diverse audiences
  • Track record of successfully problem solving and responding when challenges arise in the field 
  • Comfort giving and receiving feedback up a supervisory hierarchy
  • Ability to set priorities and manage multiple projects simultaneously
  • Ability to inspire passion for BCM’s work and programs, internally and externally
  • Strong understanding of current outdoor industry / outdoor education safety standards and best practices for organized backcountry travel
  • Willingness to hold self and others accountable for all program and organizational policies
  • Experience working from a home office and/or remotely, including capacity to work effectively on one’s own without direct supervision and comfort with technology platforms that enable effective remote collaboration (Google Workspace, Slack, Salesforce, Zoom)
  • Spanish speaking or bilingual (preferred) 

Employment & Compensation

This is a full-time, exempt position, with a starting annual salary range of $60,000 – $70,000/year. The Regional Program Manager will be eligible to receive medical, dental, and vision insurance within one month of hire.  Big City Mountaineers employees enjoy a generous paid time off policy (over 30 paid days off per calendar year) and flexibility in terms of work schedule and location. Employees have access to additional benefits after an initial period of employment.

Expected start date for this position is January 22, 2024.

How to Apply & Timeline

Please submit a current resume and thoughtful cover letter detailing why you believe your experience, capacity, and passions align with BCM’s needs to In your cover letter, be sure to address the following:

  • Your history and experience working with youth from disinvested communities
  • Your personal and/or professional experience in the backcountry
  • How your personal identity and/or lived experience plays a role in your motivation to do this work

Please combine both documents into a single PDF file, and use the subject heading format “Seattle RPM – [FirstName LastName]”.

All applications must be received no later than Friday, December 1, 2023. If we feel you might be a good potential fit for the role, we will be in touch to schedule an interview; first round interviews will take place, at latest, by December 15.

Big City Mountaineers is invested in cultivating a diverse candidate pool and is interested in connecting with candidates whose identities and/or lived experiences are similar to the youth we serve. We understand that that our next RPM may not have taken a traditional professional path, and we encourage interested individuals to apply even if you don’t meet every one of our qualifications listed.

If you have questions about this position, please email


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