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Town of Cary, NC

Job Overview

The Town of Cary is seeking a passionate public servant to develop and lead its urban forestry program. Cary is a community of nearly 170,000 people, nearly 60 square miles and is a community dedicated to excellence. The Town has over 80 miles of greenways, and roughly 11 square miles of protected stream buffers, and nearly 3,000 acres of parkland. Cary’s urban forest is one of the community’s most important assets. As part of the Imagine Cary Community Plan, the Town is seeking comprehensive excellence in urban forestry.

The Urban Forestry Manager must have an appreciation of the natural complexity of the forest and the interdisciplinary nature of urban forestry. The position is responsible for developing and nurturing the Town’s urban forest strategy, programs and partnerships. The number one priority of this position is to increase the projected tree canopy as the Town continues to develop and redevelop.

Work is performed under the general supervision of the Assistant Town Manager Office.


Manages and develops plans, policies and projects, adjusting to changing needs as progress is made; recommends goals and measurable objectives; tracks and evaluates progress toward goals and objectives;

Manages and continually updates Cary’s green asset inventory; develops management plans for Cary’s forested lands; performs plan review for development projects to ensure consistency with ordinances and at times recommend changes to the municipal code;
develops approaches for maintaining green assets on private and homeowner association lands;

Work with all Town departments and relevant stakeholders to address related issues, concepts, plans and policy amendments; to support urban forestry objectives; provides technical assistance in understanding and amending policy as it pertains to tree canopy, plantings, and green infrastructure;

Serves as Cary’s representative for urban forestry at public meetings including interactions with Town Council, Environmental Advisory Board, and a variety of internal and external stakeholders;

Fosters community education and outreach efforts related to urban forestry and related topics; translates complex issues into easily understandable concepts for a variety of audiences;

Prepares annual operating budgets, financial forecasts and tracks project expenditures; analyzes expenditures with budgets;

Maintains highly effective, positive working relationships with Town staff, other local governments, local and state environmental agencies, and non-profits;

Participates in and leads collaborative and consensus building activities as both a team leader and team member;

Manages and operates in a dynamic fast-paced environment with high expectations for producing work, clearly articulating expectations, holding others accountable, and listening effectively while being honest, open and transparent;

Performs other job-related tasks as required.


Comprehensive knowledge of principles and practices of urban forestry, arboriculture, general landscape architecture, design and construction; comprehensive knowledge of arboricultural practices, materials and equipment related to tree care and maintenance; comprehensive knowledge of modern arboriculture of forestry used in park and street tree programs; knowledge of the principles and practices of municipal land use planning, urban design, and municipal code enforcement; public engagement and outreach skills; project management skills, including team facilitation; ability to forecast probable program changes and adjust the program in response; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with developers, contractors, municipal officials, representatives of other agencies, and members of the general public; ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing; interpersonal skills in holding sensitive land use and forestry-related conversations with elected officials, developers, landowners, residents, and other staff; ability to make public presentations to Town Council, the Planning and Zoning Board, the Environmental Advisory Board, and to other boards or groups as required.


Requires any combination of education and experience equivalent to graduation from an accredited college or university with a bachelor’s degree in forestry, urban forestry, arboriculture, landscape architecture, natural resource management or a closely related field and considerable experience managing an urban forestry program. Certification as a Certified Arborist by the International Society of Arboriculture, Tree Risk Assessment Arborist, or Board-Certified Master Arborist certification required or the ability to obtain within one year. Requires a valid driver’s license with an acceptable driving record.

Preference will be given to candidates that have the following:

  • Experience with urban forestry management, asset inventory and development review
  • Experience crafting goals and objectives as well as developing strategies to meet them
  • Excellent communication, interpersonal and customer relations skills
  • Ability to build and cultivate strong collaborative relationships with internal and external partners
  • Ability to learn and adapt in an agile environment
  • Desire to seek out, foster and implement change
  • Requires drug testing and background check (which may include criminal check, education verification and credit history review) prior to employment.

    Only candidates with package can apply for this job.
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