Assistant Nursery Director

Required Qualifications:

High School Diploma and four years’ experience working in horticulture. Two years’ experience working in customer service and one years’ experience supervising staff. Knowledge of native plants and invasive species. Must be physically able to lift 50 lbs. Experience supervising and training staff. Experience with Microsoft Office suite. Ability and willingness to work with diverse populations. An active interest in conservation and the ability to work outdoors year-round in a desert environment. Practical experience or specialty training in at least one of the following: propagation, chemical handling, irrigation, botany, arboriculture, pest management, grant writing, or disability employment services.

Preferred Qualifications:

Bachelor’s degree in Ecology, Horticulture or closely related field or equivalent professional credentials/experience. Experience working with adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Exceptional teamwork and communication skills.


This position is under the direct supervision of the Nursery Director, and it is salaried and full-time. The foundation of this position is to partner with the Nursery Director to ensure the smooth operation of the nursery. This includes filling in when the Nursery Director is out, training and supervising staff, and always making management decisions with the Desert Survivors mission in mind.

Desert Survivors aims to be a fully accessible, fully integrated, supported employment program that operates a native plant nursery. All nursery staff are expected to work alongside their supported co-workers and are trained accordingly.

Specialized Duties:

  • Ensure all Mentors receive training in nursery expectations and procedures within the first two weeks of hiring.

  • Manage all off-site events and partnership contracts for the nursery. Including negotiating rates, supervising pick-ups/deliveries, and providing documentation to Operations Director for billing.

  • Provide oversight of retail nursery area including displays, signage, and any resale products. This also includes training all employees on proper cash handling and the point-of-sale system.

Primary Duties:

  • Assist Nursery Director to prepare and disseminate tasks to program directors. This includes following up with crews to answer questions and ensure understanding.

  • In partnership with program directors, train, and encourage nursery staff to include their supported co-workers in tasks.

  • Assist with pre-sale preparations.

  • Keep the Nursery Director informed regarding any needed supplies or materials.

  • Ensure that staff follow safety protocol for excessive heat warnings or other incremental weather. This includes assisting program directors to develop meaningful indoor tasks for our supported employees.

  • Support the Nursery Director to prioritize and assign tasks to staff. Which includes any needed training or timeline management.

  • Complete any and all plant-related tasks necessary for the day to day running of the nursery.


    Secondary Duties:

  • Attending monthly management meetings.

  • Attending monthly nursery staff meetings.

  • Maintains required training, CPR/ First Aid, Article IX, Prevention & Support, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation and current fingerprint clearance card.

  • ALWAYS carry a radio for communication.


Most importantly, treat all personnel at Desert Survivors with respect, courtesy and understanding. Disrespectful behavior will not be tolerated from any employee and should be reported to the management team and Executive Director.