Marine Biologist, US-Arctic Program; World Wildlife Fund

WWF-US Arctic implements conservation programs in marine and coastal ecosystems in the Bering, Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, while also promoting smart governance at the national and international levels to bolster our conservation goals.  Now is a great time to join the WWF-US Arctic team.  We are growing and developing our next five-year strategy.  

WWF has been active in Alaska and the broader Arctic region for more than 30 years.  In 1999, WWF-US opened an office in Anchorage.  Our team partners closely with indigenous communities, tribal and state governments, businesses, fishermen, scientists, universities and other conservation groups, and non-governmental, non-profit organizations.  Together WWF and its partners have accomplished a lot, including:

  • Supported and replicated a community-led polar bear “patrol” program that protects polar bears and residents in coastal villages.  Now dozens of such patrols are working across the Russian and Alaskan Arctic.  
  • WWF partnered with Alaskan fishermen and University of Washington to take their innovative approach to reducing by-catch of seabirds and replicated this effort in Russia (reduced seabird bycatch +80%).  
  • Served as a key member of a coalition of NGOs, fishermen, community organizations, commercial fishing businesses and that succeeded in permanently withdrawing Bristol Bay from future offshore oil development.
  • Fostered US-Russia bi-lateral cooperation to support designation by the International Maritime Organization of a new shipping route and areas to be avoided by maritime vessels in the Bering Sea. 

From the Anchorage, Alaska office, the US-Arctic team also cooperates with the entire WWF global Arctic team working especially closely with WWF Russia and WWF Canada.  The global Arctic priority species for WWF are polar bear, walrus, bowhead whale, beluga whale, narwhal.

About the Role

Based in Anchorage, Alaska and reporting to the Director of Conservation Programs, the US Arctic Marine Biologist provides leadership, strategic direction, coordination and technical support for the US-Arctic’s species work in Alaska.  He/she also coordinates with members of the WWF Global Arctic program, other WWF Arctic country offices, and the WWF-US wildlife team. 

WWF-US is looking for an experienced conservation strategist with sound technical knowledge and proven experience with species conservation in the Arctic. A primary component of the work includes evaluating the impacts of climate change, shipping, and other emerging threats on marine mammals.  The Marine Biologist will collaborate with the science community, resource management agencies, industry and Alaska Native tribes and communities to identify and implement conservation solutions.   

Duties & Responsibilities

Develops & accountable for the conservation priorities and includes:

  • Lead the development of marine conservation strategies for the US-Arctic Program.  Incorporate input from internal and external stakeholders on prioritizing science and traditional knowledge to inform conservation action in the ecoregion.
  • Lead the US-Arctic implementation of projects to mitigate the wildlife impacts from shipping traffic, and related noise, oil spills, collisions, growing Arctic infrastructure and emerging issues.
  • Contribute to implementation of protected areas, including through WWF’s ArcNet program and WWF’s global Arctic “Blue Corridors” project to protect critical marine mammal migration routes.
  • Develop a plan for implementing scientific research to answer key questions throughout the ecoregion, including a budget, timeline, key partners and collaborators and expected results.
  • Communicate conservation priorities and results to a regional and national audience through conferences, meetings and as a member of regional technical committees.
  • Develop monitoring programs to measure progress toward goals set forth in Arctic and program strategies, incorporating the latest science in their design.
  • Work with WWF-Russia, WWF-Canada, and the WWF Global Arctic Program to develop collaborative projects and promote information sharing between the programs.
  • In coordination with the Director of Conservation Programs and the Managing Director, develop proposals and assist in outreach to prospective funders.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


The successful candidate will demonstrate the following:

  • Graduate degree in Marine Biology, Conservation Biology, Zoology, Ecology, or Wildlife Management, and 5-8 years of experience in field research, monitoring, management or conservation of biodiversity.
  • Knowledge of key issues in Arctic species conservation and marine eco-regions is required.
  • Position requires travel of up to 40%
  • Professional experience in marine biology, ecology, natural resource management and conservation biology
  • Record of professional publications
  • Experience working with Alaska Native communities
  • Ability to think strategically and to incorporate input from a variety of stakeholders, collaborators and fellow staff members
  • Proactive, self-motivated person who works well within a team but demonstrated ability to work autonomously
  • Excellent organizational and project management skills
  • Demonstrated success managing external consultants/contractors
  • Excellent communication skills, both one-on-one and in a group setting
  • Experience writing compelling funding proposals and delivering engaging presentations
  • Ability to take initiative and facilitate the work of others
  • Willingness to travel as necessary

Compensation and Location

Compensation is competitive and commensurate with experience. This position will be based Alaska. Post COVID-19 restrictions, some domestic and international travel will be required for the role.

To Apply

CEA Recruiting is assisting WWF with this search. To be considered for this position, interested candidates should click the link below to submit a resume, cover letter, and salary requirements through CEA’s job portal.

Please direct all inquiries to Tamara Evans, Senior Search Lead |

Apply for this job online