Under the supervision of the Resource Supervisor, Senior Resource Technician or designee, performs the removal of plant material related to ecosystem management projects. Assists with tree removal, tree pruning, stream clean-up and storm damage clean-up throughout the District. Assists with maintenance of trail surfaces, trail corridors and the installation and maintenance of trail signage. Assists with performing prescribed burns on District lands in accordance with prescribed standards, and undertakes activities involved in the prevention or suppression of wildfires. Collects seeds and assists in propagating plants; prepares areas for planting, sows seeds, and plants native vegetation for ecological restoration. Applies herbicides to control invasive plant species in accordance with prescribed standards. Assists with fisheries and wildlife management projects. Assists with special events at various sites Districtwide. Works closely with Volunteer Resources staff on various projects and assists with providing guidance and direction to volunteers. This is a fulltime, union position.
Participates in work activities supporting ecosystem management projects and the maintenance of natural communities on District lands.
Operates a wide range of equipment, including but not limited to: hand tools (i.e., shovels, rakes, axes, bow-saws, loppers, chainsaws, pole-saws, line trimmers and brush cutters); small mechanized equipment (i.e., walk behind brush mowers, lawn mowers and ATVs); vehicles (i.e., dump trucks and pickup trucks equipped with trailers); and heavy equipment (i.e., skid-steer equipped with bucket or grapple, brush chippers, aerial lift trucks, log loaders, front-end loaders/backhoe, tractors equipped with forestry mulcher or rotary cutter, and bulldozers).
Responsible for the basic upkeep and maintenance of equipment, as assigned.
Performs maintenance of the District’s natural areas by removal of exotic and invasive species by means of herbicide application, mechanical control (mowing, hand cutting), and prescribed fire utilizing firsthand knowledge of the basic principles of plant ecology and related techniques.
Monitors, maintains, and reports on condition of trail surfaces and corridors; recommends and undertakes action to maintain public safety and access to designated trails.
Conducts tree maintenance, pruning, and removal operations as required to facilitate restoration programs or in the interest of public safety.
Assists in performing prescribed burns on designated management areas and wildfire suppression according to District standards and policies.
Leads fire crew on prescribed burn or wildfire suppression response.
Works independent of supervisory staff at various sites to complete management objectives and tasks as assigned.
Uses GPS and GIS technology to assist in recording and tracking land management activities.
Manually and mechanically harvests, cleans, sorts, and disperses native seed; assists with the growth and the maintenance of native plants; prepares areas for planting, sows seeds and assists with installation of plant plugs and/or trees on ecological restoration sites.
Performs handling, mixing, and applying of pesticides using various spray equipment and protective apparel to control invasive plant species according to prescribed standards.
Assists with the installation and maintenance of informational trail signage.
May participate in management, monitoring and research projects conducted on District properties such as plant inventories, fish surveys, wildlife studies and environmental education programs as assigned.
Assists with special events including but not limited to: Kids Climb, Touch-a-Truck, Cross-Cut Saw, Share the Trails and other activities and events as necessary District-wide.
Supports intern and volunteer activities by providing guidance and direction in the use and application of tools and equipment, workday assistance or in other capacities as required.
Must possess a bachelor’s degree or higher in forestry, urban forestry, forest ecology, forest resource management or substantially similar area from an accredited college or university AND at least one years of seasonal, professional work experience in natural area restoration, arborist work, equipment operation, or other landscape/agricultural work.
Must possess a high school diploma or G.E.D. AND at least five years of seasonal, professional work experience in natural area restoration, arborist work, equipment operation, or other landscape/agricultural work.
Must possess a valid Illinois Pesticide Operators License OR official documentation verifying that the exam has been passed.
Must have completed the National Wildfire Coordinating Group S130/S190 courses or the Chicago Wilderness Midwest Ecological Prescription Burn Crew Member Training.
Must possess a Class A Commercial Driver’s License (“CDL”) OR a Class A CDL Permit with a valid driver’s license AND ability to obtain a Class A CDL within eleven months from date of hire.
Possession of at least one season of work experience with the Forest Preserves of Cook County, OR at least one season of work experience as a Conservation Corp Crew member, OR at least one season of work experience on property of the Forest Preserves District of Cook County with partners such as the Chicago Zoological Society, Chicago Botanic Garden, Greencorps Chicago, OR at least one season of work experience with other partners such as, Friends of the Forest Preserves or the Student Conservation Association.
Knowledge, Skills, Abilities and Other Characteristics
Knowledge of the basic principles and concepts related to ecology and plant physiology.
Knowledge of the basic principles and techniques used for restoration management.
Knowledge of and the ability to perform the basics of fire management as it relates to prescribed burning.
Ability to obtain a Class A Commercial Driver’s License within eleven (11) months of employment.
Knowledge of and ability to perform prescribed herbicide application as required.
Ability to identify native (including endangered and threatened) and non-native plant species and have an understanding of their respective ecosystems and management techniques including, but not limited to, proper herbicide application procedures.
General knowledge of established State and District rules and regulations regarding land management.
Ability to identify insect pests.
Ability to follow instructions and carry out related duties as assigned.
Ability to read maps and utilize GPS to locate work sites.
Ability to communicate effectively with the general public and represent the District in a professional manner.
Ability to maintain grounds and equipment and make minor repairs to various types of tools and machinery used in restoration vegetation management.
Must maintain the required certifications and licenses for this position as a condition of continued employment.
Ability to obtain any additional certifications and licenses deemed appropriate by the District for this position.
Knowledge of nationally and professionally accepted safety and operational guidelines and regulations; ability to follow safety procedures.
Ability to work extended hours or hours outside normal business hours to facilitate prescribed burn season, storm damage operations, special events or other unforeseen occurrences related to the function of this position.
Ability to effectively demonstrate knowledge, skills and abilities as indicated herein; ability to perform the typical duties and meet the physical requirements of the job.
This position requires exposure to a hazardous work environment including but not limited to: exposure to fire, smoke, herbicides, stream clean-up, natural elements, inclement weather, hazardous plants and animals and the physical ability to perform various types of physical exertion including, but not limited to lifting, pulling, pushing, and moving objects of moderate to heavy weight.
This position may require the employee to work out of various locations temporarily to facilitate District operations.
The duties listed are not set forth for purposes of limiting the assignment of work. They are not to be construed as a complete list of the many duties normally to be performed under a job title or those to be performed temporarily outside an employee's normal line of work.
When applying for employment with the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, preference is given in the application process to honorably discharged Veterans who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States for more than 180 consecutive days or during War Time. To take advantage of this preference, a Veteran must:
Meet the minimum qualifications for the position.
Identify him/herself as a Veteran on his/her employment application by answering “Yes” to the question “Are you a military veteran?”
Attach a copy of his/her DD 214, DD 215, or NGB 22 (Notice of Separation) at the time of application by uploading it as part of your application. If there are multiple DD 214s, DD 215s, or NGB 22s, the one with the most recent date should be submitted. Coast Guard members must submit a certified copy of the military separation from either the Department of Transportation (before 911) or the Department of Homeland Security (after 911).
Veteran must provide original applicable discharge papers at time of interview.
Medical, Dental, and Vision Coverage
Basic Term Life Insurance
Pension Plan and Deferred Compensation Program
Employee Assistance Program
Paid Holidays, Vacation, and Sick Time
You May Qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF)
For further information on our excellent benefits package, please click on the following link:
General District Employment Requirements
PROOF OF EDUCATION, CERTIFICATIONS AND/OR LICENSES MUST BE PROVIDED.
MUST BE A RESIDENT OF COOK COUNTY OR ESTABLISH RESIDENCY IN COOK COUNTY WITHIN SIX (6) MONTHS OF EMPLOYMENT AND REMAIN A RESIDENT AT ALL TIMES DURING EMPLOYMENT WITH THE DISTRICT.
MUST BE FULLY VACCINATED AT THE TIME OF HIRE OR SUBMIT A REQUEST FOR A REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION WITHIN ONE (1) WEEK OF START DATE.
The Forest Preserve District of Cook County is an equal opportunity employer and ensures against discrimination in employment on the basis of a person’s race, color, sex, age, religion, disability, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, military discharge status, source of income, housing status, or gender identity. We value our employees and the different talents, expertise, and viewpoints that each bring to the table. We believe a robust exchange of ideas results in better decision-making and we commit to providing a constructive, safe, and positive work atmosphere that promotes mutual respect and empowers individuals to thrive in their jobs.