Job Type: Permanent
Salary Details: Starting salary is $75,000, commensurate with education, experience, and skills
Deadline: Jun 12, 2023

The Illinois Natural History Survey is seeking a Botanist to develop, plan, direct, and conduct basic and applied research by coordinating, supervising, and managing research, technical work, and projects in botany.  This position fits within the Biological Surveys and Assessment Group whose primary function is to evaluate Illinois Department of Transportation projects and their impacts to threatened and endangered species. This position will be based in Champaign, Illinois.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Conduct surveys and/or habitat assessments, especially on threatened and endangered species in IDOT project areas.
  • Serve as the primary contact with the Program Leader, planning seasonal field work, supervision of staff, and preparation of
  • Plan, organize, and conduct field
  • Conduct and direct field operations and lead field crews and students.
  • Synthesize, analyze, and summarize results of field investigations and other
  • Produce reports necessary to meet contract and grant deliverables and prepare technical
  • Conduct independent research and write scientific
  • Conduct searches for distribution records, prepare and disseminate reports to funding agencies describing survey methods and results, and provide data to resource
  • Contribute specimens and data to the Survey
  • Support other Survey and PRI staff with data collection, interpretation, and analysis.
  • Identify relevant research needs and project
  • Develop and contribute to proposals for external funding and secure funding to support independent
  • Conduct, develop, and participate in research and service
  • Develop and maintain data assets within existing geospatial database.
  • Implement modern data collection standards for field data.
  • Standardize field botany group data collection protocols, technical reports, and data management.
  • Supervise, mentor, evaluate, promote, and lead academic professionals and hourly workers to achieve success and foster a culture of innovation and high-level performance at both individual and organizational levels. This includes task assignment, scheduling, ongoing performance management with coaching and feedback and purchase and travel
  • Ensure the safety of staff and
  • Lead recruitment and hiring of academic professionals and hourly employees for the
  • Develop and maintain data assets with modern database design, collection, and archival.
  • Respond to requests from the Survey and PRI management regarding contract activities and areas of
  • Provide technical expertise to staff, government agencies, academia, industry, and the public.
  • Attend scientific conferences and training courses and presents papers and results.
  • Contribute in the areas of education and outreach to the Survey, PRI, the University of Illinois, and the State of Illinois Enhance the reputation of the survey and PRI at the state, national, and international
  • Represent the Survey and PRI at professional meetings conferences, and training
  • Collaborate with Survey staff, University of Illinois faculty, and external colleagues to provide integrated interpretations and applications to existing and new research
  • Perform other duties as needed to further the mission and goals of, PRI, and the University of Illinois.
  • Keep abreast of developments in this

Additional Physical Demands
Will require working in adverse field conditions (heat, humidity, biting insects, etc.), travel (including driving to and from research sites) throughout the state of Illinois working irregular hours and overnights; lift and carry equipment weighing up to 25 pounds. Some of the work of this position takes place in an office setting. The work is sedentary and involves remaining in a stationary position for extended periods of time working at a computer, using a keyboard and mouse, and using repetitive hand motions.

Minimum Qualifications
Master’s degree in appropriate biological science or related field. Alternate degree fields will be considered depending on the nature and depth of the experience as it relates to this position. A minimum of 8 years of experience collecting and analyzing field data for the completion of botanical studies; this includes familiarity with the equipment and proper skills for collecting specimens. Valid Driver’s License.

Preferred Qualifications
A minimum of 3 years of experience with administrative duties associated with leading teams of employees and satisfying sponsor-related deliverables. Experience with modern data management, QA/QC, and automated data pipelines.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Must have strong knowledge of the flora of the mid-western United States, in field identifications and the ability to determine unknown species and recognize high-quality natural areas of Midwestern fauna, plus the knowledge of Illinois’ endangered and threatened species and their habitat requirements. Must have strong leadership and administrative skills and the ability to manage large projects. Must have demonstrated ability in writing grant proposals and planning and conducting research activities. Must have strong skills and training in an appropriate biological discipline. Must have familiarity with scientific literature, biological and bibliographic databases, and specimen archival for botanical collection. Effective communication, personal relations, collaboration, organizational, teamwork, and leadership skills. Demonstrated ability to perform effectively in a diverse and fast-paced work environment consisting of multiple and changing priorities with stringent deadlines, under minimal supervision. Attention to detail, sound judgment, and strong conflict resolution skills. Proficiency in commonly employed software and databases.

Appointment Information
This is a 100% full-time Academic Professional position, appointed on a 12-month basis, renewable annually based upon satisfactory progress in the position and continuation of funding. The start date is negotiable, and the starting salary is $75,000, commensurate with education, experience, and skill.   

Application Procedures & Deadline Information
Applications must be received by June 12, 2023.  Apply for this position at using the Apply Now button at the top or bottom of the posting. Applications not submitted through this website will not be considered. Application materials must include a 1) cover letter that clearly outlines your qualifications and experience as it relates to this position, 2) a CV or resume, and 3) names and contact information (including email addresses) for three professional references. Incomplete applications will not be considered. For further information about this specific position, please contact Wendy Schelsky at For questions regarding the application process, please contact 217-333-2137.