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Partnerships & Recruitment Director

First Descents (FD) provides life-changing outdoor adventures for young adults (ages 18-39) impacted by cancer and other serious health conditions. FD is seeking a Partnerships & Recruitment Director to join the Programs Department. The Partnerships and Recruitment Director is responsible for partnership outreach and development, participant recruitment, and supporting community engagement. The Partnerships & Recruitment Director will lead the team responsible for working in these key areas and must be a strong leader, manager, and facilitator. To be successful, this individual must possess both hard and soft skills required to advance work internally and externally, including managing a motivated team and advancing relationships with medical providers and hospital partners via FDs’ Prescribe Adventure campaign (https://firstdescents.org/healthcarepartnerships/).

As a key point of contact within our community, it is imperative the Partnerships & Recruitment Director is passionate about our mission and demonstrates our commitment to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) in the outdoor and healthcare spaces (https://firstdescents.org/community/justice-equity-diversity-and-inclusion/).

This position is eligible for remote individuals based in the US.



  • Oversee the Recruitment Team, including Program Managers, Program Coordinators, contract staff, and interns
  • Responsible for strategies and activities that achieve FDs’ recruitment and partnership goals
  • Identify and target key advocacy, recruitment and custom program partners, a focus and passion for building Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and JEDI partnerships is essential
  • Present at meetings and conferences to advance relationships with target healthcare providers, patient advocacy organizations, and community-based hospitals that translates to program sign ups
  • Educate and train partners to speak on behalf of FD and refer to their patient/community base to FD programs
  • Responsible for generating a minimum of 2,000 program inquiries annually
  • Develop a communication and recruitment strategy to drive program conversion; constantly look for ways to improve applicant engagement and commitment
  • Oversee FDs’ recruitment process with a focus on gaining efficiencies, removing barriers, and risk management
  • Train and manage FDs’ volunteer Medical Reviewer Team (15-20 medical professionals) responsible for screening applicants and determining an applicant’s program readiness
  • Collaborate with FDs’ Medical Director and Medical Advisory Board to implement application related policies and practices
  • Identify opportunities to improve the functionality of FDs’ website, inquiry, and application design
  • Collaborate with other members of the Programs Team to identify and address gaps in continued community engagement outside of core programming (e.g. Out Living It Project, Local Leaders program, storytelling, etc.)
  • Develop an annual budget and performance plan for all Partnerships and Recruitment related functions, and track and achieve associated Key Performance Indicators
  • Monitor and analyze program survey findings and completion rates, and implement changes as needed
  • Track and manage all account correspondence, reminders, and opportunities in Salesforce
  • Use project management tools, develop written processes, and hold the team accountable to do the same
  • Support any internal or external research efforts, as needed
  • Other duties and projects as assigned
  • Seasoned professional with 10 years of relevant experience in the areas of patient navigation services, non-profit program management, program recruitment, and/or sales
  • Experience leading teams with multiple direct reports; nonprofit experience is advantageous
  • A process and operations related mindset is essential and demonstrated experience will be required
  • Exceptional communication skills and presentation skills
  • Creative with a high capacity for execution
  • Strong time and resource management skills
  • Comfortable using data to inform decision making and familiarity using CRM systems
  • A strong network of related contacts, including patient advocacy groups, medical centers, academic hospitals, and community hospitals is important
  • A demonstrated commitment to JEDI
  • A background working with the MS community is beneficial
  • Representative of FDs’ Core Values & Code of Conduct (https://firstdescents.org/our-values/)
  • Strong passion for FDs’ mission and support for its long-term vision and goals
  • Energetic and enjoy engaging with staff, volunteers, partners, and donors
  • Willingness to travel up to 25% of the time to advance key relationships nationally

The First Descents Team is a close-knit group of individuals. We are looking for someone who is humble, motivated by challenge, collaborative, curious, and preferably one who can make us laugh. We are extremely busy at certain times of the year, so your willingness to get the job done and take on additional responsibilities as needed is appreciated. At the same time, we support one another and encourage self-care.

Inside Details:

This is a full-time, exempt position. Remote candidates from outside the Denver, CO area will be considered for this position (remote staff will be expected to be available to travel to Denver 2-4 weeks annually for team meetings).

First Descents prides itself on being an inclusive community with an ongoing commitment to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI). We know that cancer and other serious health conditions do not discriminate, and we are dedicated to serving all categories of identity. Our programs use the healing power of adventure to build supportive networks and ignite the Out Living It spirit.

The salary range for this position is $65,000-$85,000 annually.


If you’re passionate about contributing your skills and enthusiasm to help us serve countless more young adults impacted by cancer and other serious health conditions in the years to come, we want to hear from you!

First Descents is an equal opportunity employer. All aspects of employment including the decision to hire, promote, discipline, or discharge, will be based on merit, competence, performance, and business needs. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, marital status, age, national origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical​​​ condition, pregnancy, genetic information, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or ​expression, veteran status, or any other status protected under federal, state, or local law.