Marine Fisheries Officer- Kenya at The Nature Conservancy

Associate Director Advocacy & Strategic Communications - Africa Region at The Nature Conservancy

Position: Marine Fisheries Officer – Kenya

Who We Are:

The Nature Conservancy’s (TNC) mission is to protect the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that we can create a world in which people and nature thrive. We’re rooted in our Mission and guided by our Values, which includes a Commitment to Diversity and Respect for People, Communities, and Cultures. Whether it’s career development, flexible schedules, or a rewarding mission, there’s lots of reasons to love life #insideTNC. Want a better insight to TNC? Check out our TNC Talent playlist on YouTube or on Glassdoor.

Our goal is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that all our colleagues around the globe feel a sense of belonging, and that their unique contributions to our mission are valued. We know we’ll only achieve our Mission by hiring and engaging a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we work. In addition to the requirements in our postings, we recognize that people come with talent and experiences outside of a job. Diversity of experience and skills combined with passion is a key to innovation and a culture of inclusion! Please apply – we’d love to hear from you. To quote myriad TNC staff members, “you’ll join for our mission, and you’ll stay for our people.”

Since establishing the Africa Program in 2007, TNC’s vision in Africa is to work towards fostering a sustainable future for people and nature, partnering with indigenous communities across 55 million acres on the continent. Our efforts are firmly rooted in people, leveraging scientific and technical expertise as we collaborate with governments and organizations to conserve and enhance Africa’s shared resources in the 9 countries we operate.

TNC’s work in Africa transcends three key pillars: securing ownership rights to lands, waters and natural resources for indigenous people and local communities, strengthening leadership and resource management and helping communities value nature through a holistic appreciation of its benefits while increasing revenue streams for conservation efforts and socio-economic development. Together with our partners, we are witnessing critical milestones in integrated land and fisheries management, ocean and source water protection, energy development and sustainable food production, working together and strengthening our resolve in tackling global challenges such as climate change, habitat and biodiversity loss that stands to adversely impact the nearly 1.4 billion people that share Africa.

TNC’s Africa Oceans Strategy focuses on securing large-scale ocean protection by supporting effective marine spatial planning, sustainable fisheries, and community-led conservation approaches. Our work seeks to establish sustainable financing to enable conservation outcomes at large marine ecosystem scale, by supporting policy and regulatory frameworks, as well as local capacity, with emphasis on linking science and communities to habitat protection, restoration, and management. TNC envisions sustainable fisheries that are managed in a way that results in viable local fisheries, stable supplies of seafood, thriving coastal communities, biodiversity conservation, and healthy marine and coastal ecosystems. TNC’s Africa marine fisheries work aims at safeguarding productive marine fisheries for ecosystem health as an important foundation for food and livelihood security. Our vision is for aquaculture to grow in a responsible and sustainable manner with the least environmental impact.

TNC has established partnerships with several non-government and government agencies to support coastal and marine fisheries and coastal community-led conservation throughout Africa where TNC operates. The main areas of focus for TNC in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO) are the Zanzibar Islands, the coast of mainland Tanzania, and coastal Kenya. Other countries of focus are the Seychelles, South Africa and Gabon. The focus of this position is coastal Kenya with most functions in the Lamu-Tana seascape.

What We Can Achieve Together:

The Marine Fisheries Officer – Kenya works to support, coordinate and implement fisheries related activities on the Northern coast of Kenya. The Africa Fisheries Strategy aims to safeguard productive marine and freshwater fisheries for ecosystem health and as an important foundation of food and livelihood security. Working closely with the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT – Coast) on the Northern coast of Kenya, they support partnerships with fishers, community conservancies, industry, government and non-government organisations to improve fisheries monitoring, demonstrate sustainable community-based management practices, advance supportive policies, and create market incentives that reward sustainable fishing practices.

They will work closely and in partnership with an interdisciplinary team of conservancy staff, fishers, local communities, conservation partners, fishing industry, scientific community, and government to advance sustainable fisheries and coastal community-led conservation in Kenya. They will advance replication and adaptation of lessons and success models in fisheries and coastal and marine conservation along the Kenya coast. This position is part of the TNC Africa Ocean team and will be based at our NRT partner office in Lamu, Kenya, reporting to the Africa Fisheries Strategy Manager. No employment visas or assistance is being offered with this position except for the local labor employment requirements. This is an initial 3-year term limited position with an extension of tenure subject to performance and availability of funds.

We’re Looking for You:

The broad goal of this position is to provide strategic direction and technical support in the development and implementation of a marine and coastal conservation programme in the northern coast of Kenya, that will promote the sustainable management of marine and coastal resources. The Marine Fisheries Officer (Kenya) develops, coordinates and implements priority coastal and marine projects and serves as a technical resource on sustainable fisheries, habitats restoration (mangroves, seagrasses, coral reef) and coastal community-led conservation in the Lamu-Tana seascape, Kenya.

TNC has established partnerships with several local organizations, including Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT), in the northern coast of Kenya to support community-led conservation and development. TNC in collaboration with other partners seeks to design and implement conservation and community stewardship actions to conserve Kenya’s coastal and marine habitats, with a special focus on Lamu-Tana Seascape.

They will be a key contributor to TNC’s growing portfolio of projects in Kenya including coastal community-led conservation, coastal fisheries (including FishPath engagement projects), large-scale fisheries (electronic monitoring activities), habitats restoration and conservation activities (mangroves, seagrass, coral reefs), gender mainstreaming in fisheries, fisheries policy as well as building fisheries and ocean governance with focus on addressing Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing. . The Marine Fisheries Officer (Kenya) ensures the implementation of site-based projects, coordinates with several team members including partners, relevant TNC staff, sets deadlines and manages to completion.

They support, coordinate and lead the design and implementation of effective co-management models for sustainable fisheries and to conserve coastal and marine habitats in Kenya. They support fisher institutions and partners develop and enforce by-laws that advances sustainable fishing practices including effective patrols, monitoring, awareness and reducing the use of illegal and damaging fishing practices. They will apply a diversified knowledge of fisheries-related scientific principles and practices to a broad variety of assignments, from engagement with key stakeholders, research, assessment, analysis and writing, project coordination and management.

The responsibilities and scope for this position are:

  • Support monitoring and establishment of baselines on socio-ecological systems including fisheries and coastal habitats to inform conservation planning and adaptive management at target geographies in Kenya.
  • Lead capacity building activities to strengthen governance and management of community-led institutions including Community Conservancies, fisheries Beach Management Units, Community Forest Associations, fisher cooperatives and others for sustainable fisheries and coastal management.
  • Support designing and application of science-based management and monitoring plans/tools for sustainable resource use e.g marine – Conservancy Management and Monitoring System (Marine-CoMMS). Build the institutional capacity of key partners for lasting local capacity and multi-stakeholder collaboration on sustainable fisheries and coastal community-led conservation.
  • Liaise regularly with relevant conservation organizations and partners to support implementation of NRT Marine Strategy.
  • Support development and adoption of processes and tools for advancing sustainable fisheries and coastal community-led conservation through cross-cutting support from partners and local and global TNC teams.
  • Lead planning and coordination of workshops and trainings, including FishPath engagement processes, in collaboration with local partners, TNC Global FishPath team and others to improve fisheries management and increase capacity in the management of fisheries and coastal habitats.
  • Expand development and implementation of local-level resource management plans and interventions in target coastal communities including fisheries co-management areas, protected area plans and community-led monitoring and enforcement systems.
  • Work closely with the Reef Resilience Network to build capacity of local community, practitioners, coral reef managers and scientists to support effective marine conservation, including reef restoration approaches and sharing of lessons in Kenya.
  • Support implementation of community-based enterprises that incentivize sustainable practices including value chain improvement of fish and fisheries products and “Blue Carbon” Payments for Ecosystem Services
  • Foster cross learning between coastal communities and projects for sharing best practices and to leverage cross-fertilization of knowledge for adaptive management.
  • Ensure development and management of work plans and large project budgets.
  • May involve working in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain, and under physically demanding circumstances.
  • Under minimal supervision, make independent decisions based on analysis, experience, and context.
  • The position will involve frequent travel domestically and internationally, including evening and weekend hours.

What You’ll Bring:

  • BA/BS degree and 5 years of experience in coastal/marine fisheries management, conservation; or related field; or equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience on collaborative/co-management approaches and marine science and conservation
  • Familiarity with national fisheries and other marine-management policies and frameworks in Kenya.
  • Understanding of key contextual issues and dynamics relating to fisheries and coastal ecosystems conservation and relevant work experience in Kenya.
  • Experience in developing supportive and collaborative partnerships with other non-profits, community groups and/or government agencies.
  • Excellent communication skills via written, spoken, and graphical means in English and other relevant languages.
  • Strong technical writing and data analytical skills, interpretation, and presentation of information to a broad range of audiences and stakeholders.
  • Experience in analyzing data and using statistical packages such as Excel and other analysis tools

Desired Qualifications:

  • Advanced degree and over 7 years’ experience in conservation practice or equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience working with the coastal fishing communities.
  • Experience in development and implementation of online and in-person trainings and workshops.
  • Multi-lingual skills and multi-cultural experience are appreciated. Fluency in Swahili is an added advantage.
  • Demonstrated experience and skills in managing complex field-related projects.
  • Willingness and ability to undertake extended periods of field travel (at least 40%) domestically and internationally.
  • Politically savvy within the national context.
  • A passion for conservation, ocean protection and working with local communities.

What We Bring:

Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has been doing work you can believe in protecting the lands and waters that all life depends on. Through grassroots action, TNC has grown to become one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff, we impact conservation throughout the world!

The Nature Conservancy offers a competitive, comprehensive benefits package including health care benefits, Retirement Pension Stipend, parental leave, accrued paid time off, life insurance, disability coverage, employee assistance program, other life and work wellbeing benefits. Learn more about our benefits at in the Culture Tab on

We’re proud to offer a work-environment that is supportive of the health, wellbeing, and flexibility needs of the people we employ!

How to apply


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