Front Porch Blog

Job Posting with OVEC

Our fellow organizers in West Virginia have an opening for a community organizer! The Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, or OVEC, is one of the oldest grassroots environmental groups in the region, and was the first to organize against mountaintop removal.

Job Announcement: OVEC Coalfield Organizer/Project Coordinator

The Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition (OVEC), based in Huntington, WV seeks a full-time, highly reliable and experienced community organizer to coordinate our Sludge Safety Project and to continue building momentum for justice in the southern coalfields of West Virginia.

OVEC’s mission is to organize and maintain a diverse grassroots organization dedicated to the improvement and preservation of the environment through education, grassroots organizing and coalition building, leadership development and media outreach. We are a non-profit group.

The Sludge Safety Project is a coalition of OVEC, Coal River Mountain Watch and communities throughout West Virginia working for clean water and community safety near toxic coal waste sludge impoundments and underground injections.

We have already made significant strides in our local community organizing and our coalition efforts for community health and access to clean water. We are looking for a coordinator who can take Sludge Safety Project to the next level and build on our effectiveness locally and at the state legislature.

• Build the capacity of the Sludge Safety Project Committee, and carry out the strategy and decisions of the committee
• Support local organizing for clean water and other issues that may arise. As a coalfield organizer, community efforts will include community wind, fighting mountaintop removal permits, and seeding and maintaining local groups.
• Plan and facilitate strategy meetings
• Coordinate legislative efforts, including citizen lobby days
• Facilitate communication and relationships between community groups to build a stronger coalition
• Identify and build the capacity of community leaders and organizers
• Identify needs and coordinate trainings and other opportunities for leadership development
• Bring media attention to SSP issues, which includes writing press releases, updates to website and OVEC newsletter, maintaining email list, holding press conferences, etc.
• Pursue, nurture and maintain coalition partnerships
• Develop personal work plan, work reports, timesheets, expense forms, etc.

• Strong commitment to social and environmental justice
• Strong commitment to group decision-making
• Highly motivated, self-starter and able to motivate others to act
• Strong people skills: Willing to make “cold calls” and strike up conversation
• Well-organized
• Goal oriented
• Able to work on multiple projects in a focused manner
• Keep groups of people well informed and engaged in decision-making
• Experience working for an environmental and social justice organization
• Experience in community organizing
• Basic computer skills such as Word, Excel, g-mail and a publishing program
• Willing to work nights and weekends
• Willing to learn and create an atmosphere of learning
• Excellent, active listener
• Good at problem-solving; able to deal with conflict in a skilled, respectful manner
• Able and willing to ask hard questions
• Creativity a plus
• Science background useful but not required

Our work is based in southern West Virginia. One-on-one, face-to-face conversations with impacted residents living near sludge sites and mountaintop removal is fundamental to the work we do. The position is significantly based in Mingo County and the surrounding area. Willingness to live in the coalfields is a strong plus.

The position requires a significant amount of driving, and owning a reliable car is essential.

Salary and Benefits:
Salary commensurate with experience; competitive benefits package includes health insurance, travel reimbursement, retirement, compensation time, professional development and generous vacation.

To Apply:
Please submit 1 personal and 2 professional references along with your resume and cover letter to by May 22.

To learn more about our work, please visit and

OVEC is an equal opportunity employer.




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