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Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) Program Manager & Trainer

(Full-Time Position at Camille Graham Correctional Center (CGCC), Columbia, SC)

Who We Are

Impact Justice advances safety, justice, and opportunity through boundary-breaking work that honors and empowers people and is changing expectations about what we can accomplish together. We work to reduce the number of people caught up in harmful legal systems by creating alternatives that are responsive, restorative, fair, and effective; to improve living conditions and life outcomes and safeguard fundamental human rights for the millions of people still subject to mass incarceration; and to expand opportunities for formerly incarcerated and other system-involved people to heal, fully participate in community life, and reach their potential. 

We are a diverse and allied staff of reformers, transformers, abolitionists, and dreamers who bring a wide range of knowledge, skill, and life experience to the challenging work we undertake together. We’re committed to living our values and to creating the kinds of equitable and inclusive team environments internally that we fight to help create in our broader communities. The organization strongly encourages people of color, individuals who identify as part of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer communities, and individuals impacted by the legal system to join the team. A majority of individuals on our current executive team identify as BIPOC and/or LGBTQ. We are committed to workplace diversity and providing equal employment opportunities.

About Growing Justice 

Growing Justice was inspired by Impact Justice’s 2020 series Eating Behind Bars, which documents the unhealthy, degrading quality of food in prisons nationwide. In the first half of 2024, Growing Justice partner AmplifiedAg will establish a vertical farm on the grounds of the Camille Graham Correctional Center that will produce 48,000 lbs of nutrient-rich leafy greens for CGCC residents each year. Impact Justice will then use the vertical farm as a job training site. Impact Justice has partnered with Skout Strategy and Agritecture to create a five-month, 200-hour curriculum and training program specifically for use in prison that combines classroom education with hands-on learning opportunities as participants help to run the vertical farms. We plan to train participants in cohorts of 15-18 over the five months and match graduates with relevant, sustainable employment opportunities upon their release (Growing Justice SC will also employ a full-time Job Placement Specialist and Case Manager/Attorney from Root & Rebound for reentry services). In addition to the site at CGCC in South Carolina, Growing Justice is in the process of launching 2 other sites: one at Central California Womens’ Facility in Chowchilla, CA, and one inside Impact Justice’s office building in downtown Oakland. 

 

Who You Are

This is a new project and a new position. Overall, you have a strong conviction about food justice for all people. You have a vision of what food justice can and should look like for those that experience incarceration. You will also have a strong understanding of and experience in CEA (Controlled Environment Agriculture) with an ethos toward innovation. You are a educator with a high EQ, and are highly adaptable. 

This position is broken down into two parts: Program Manager and Trainer. 

As the Program Manager: You are an experienced project manager with strong interpersonal skills that allow for meaningful interactions and discovery amongst people from a wide range of backgrounds. You have in-depth experience in program development and implementation. You are a creative thinker who likes big challenges and is excited to play a key role doing something that’s never been done before. 

As the Trainer: You have prior CEA/urban farming experience, as well as expertise in teaching and/or managing training programs. You have strong training and presentation skills and a high degree of comfort in translating complex information to meet the needs of a myriad of audiences. 

You are also: 

  • An adaptive problem solver with a willingness to learn and grow 
  • A highly-autonomous self-starter who thrives in changing, dynamic environments 
  • Able to juggle and implement multiple simultaneous project elements 
  • Comfortable interacting with individuals impacted by the criminal legal system, criminal legal system staff and officials, and external partners, consultants, or vendors
  • An experienced project manager with previous experience collecting programmatic data 
  • An excellent training facilitator with strong listening and verbal/written communication skills 
  • Adept at time management with a proven ability to meet deadlines 
  • Comfortable working with remote partners, consultants, and staff 
  • Tech-savvy: comfortable with Google Suite, Microsoft Office Suite, Asana, and databases/case management systems 
  • A critical thinker with a high level of analytical/interpretive thinking and problem-solving skills 
  • Methodical, efficient, and able to synthesize and organize disparate information clearly 

 

Big Pluses (but not requirements): 

  • You have experience within the criminal/juvenile justice system
  • You have personal experience within the social service system; including being system-impacted, formerly incarcerated, a former foster youth, or have loved ones who are systems-impacted 

That said, we know there are great candidates who may not think they fit into what we’ve described above or who have important skills we haven’t thought of. If that is you, don’t hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself! And if you’re a formerly incarcerated individual or someone who has a family member who is or has been incarcerated, or otherwise have direct experience with the criminal legal or juvenile legal systems, we will be particularly excited to hear from you.

 

What You Will Do

The anticipated start date for this position is April, 2024. You will report to the VP of Innovations. Your core responsibilities will be: 

As the Program Manager:

  • Manage Growing Justice’s budgeting and project deliverables for the CGCC site
  • Manage partnerships and relationships with project partners (such as AmplifiedAg and Root & Rebound), consultants, and SCDC staff, and manage the program overall
  • Effectively navigate challenges in program implementation 
  • Oversee program data collection and evaluation (in partnership with the research team) 
  • Develop strong relationships and work closely with other core Camille Graham project members including the Case Manager/Attorney, Site Manager and Job Placement Specialist to ensure overall program success
  • Flag major issues to the VP of Innovations as they arise; make and implement recommendations for improvements
  • Be laser-focused on results and what the program needs to continuously improve its quality of training and quantity of individuals served  
  • Participate in fundraising efforts for the CGCC site
  • Participate in public speaking opportunities, including media interviews, podcasts, and other events as they arise .

As the Trainer:

  • Receive comprehensive training in this specific CEA operation (containers and tech from AmplifiedAg) and job training curriculum (created by Agritecture and Skout Strategy); fully absorb materials and be prepared to instruct program participants in both classroom and farm settings
  • Develop supplemental training materials / assets
  • Develop and implement a recruitment / application plan for Growing Justice participants 
  • Manage the Growing Justice training program and provide training and oversight to CGCC program participants including the creation and evaluation of any testing materials 
  • Monitor participants throughout the program and actively work with those needing special attention 

 

Required Qualifications

  • 5 – 8  years of experience in urban farming and / or training in the agriculture space
  • A critical understanding of and deep commitment to fostering a more humane, responsive, and restorative system of justice in our nation
  • Experience working with remote teams and staff
  • Able to work with diverse communities and individuals- across, race, ethnicity, sexual preference, ability, age, gender identity, class,  criminal legal experience etc.
  • Strong writing and communication skills 
  • Strong public speaking skills with experience addressing a wide range of audiences
  • Collaborative nature and proven track record of teamwork and generous leadership
  • Strong critical thinking skills, resourcefulness, and ability to problem-solve
  • Coaching skills based on an ethos of social justice, racial justice, community, and mutuality

 

Applying

The position will be paid $72 – 90k / annually (salary commensurate with experience). The benefits that come with working at Impact Justice include medical, dental, and FSA plans, significant vacation and wellness leave, and immediate vesting in our 401K with a generous match. This is a full-time, salaried position. The candidate should be located near Columbia, SC or willing to relocate and be able to work on-site. 

Due to the hands-on nature of the role, we are not considering remote staff for this position.

COVID-19 Vaccination is a condition of employment for all employees (office-based and remote). We require employees to be fully vaccinated and up to date per the CDC guidance. 

If this all sounds like a good fit for you, please submit your resume and instead of writing a traditional cover letter, respond to the following three prompts.

  1. Why Impact Justice and why the interest in working on a project that provides fresh food to people inside prisons?
  2. What is your experience working in CEA?
  3. What is your experience delivering training to groups of people?

 

You can send this to growingjusticejobs@impactjustice.org. Please have the subject line of the email read “[Your Last Name], [Your First Name] Application for Program Manager/ Trainer: Camille Graham.  

We plan on making decisions on a rolling basis, so the earlier you apply the better.    

 

Hiring Process

Elements of the Impact Justice hiring process may include phone screen interviews, candidate exercises (written or presentations), Zoom interviews, in-person interviews, and reference checks. Candidates are welcome to ask for alternative arrangements in the process if needed (for example, conducting an interview via phone rather than Zoom), Impact Justice will do our best to accommodate reasonable requests. Please communicate any alternative arrangements requested via the hiring email listed above.

 Equal Opportunity Employment

Impact Justice provides equal employment opportunities to all applicants without regard to race/ethnicity, color, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, national origin, age, criminal history, or disability. We work closely with communities of color, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, questioning, gender nonconforming, and transgender communities, the formerly incarcerated, and former foster youth. Those with lived experience in these communities are strongly encouraged to apply.