Position Announcement

JOB TITLE: Southwest Operations Manager 

REPORTS TO: Southwest Program Manager

JOB OBJECTIVE: The NOLS Southwest operations manager is an essential member of the Southwest leadership team. They oversee outdoor gear services, food services, and transportation in support of Southwest courses; along with facilities, vehicles, finance systems, and information technology systems for the NOLS Southwest campus. They serve as the interface between the Southwest program team and each operations department in support of NOLS Southwest programs. They may also represent NOLS in the local community, interacting with the public as well as government officials and business partners.


  • Knowledge of and passion for the NOLS mission and operations, and commitment to serve our students. 
  • Previous management and/or supervision experience, and the ability to improve, innovate, and implement systems.
  • A positive attitude, strong work ethic, and high degree of motivation, initiative, and organizational skills. 
  • Able to work independently and with a variety of people on a team, and communicate clearly and effectively both orally and in writing. 
  • Ability and willingness to work flexible and (at times) irregular hours, including on weekends or holidays, to support NOLS Southwest operations. 
  • Experience with or willingness to learn Excel and Google suite, Quicken, and Point of Sale Inventory Management Systems (POSIM).

LEADERSHIP OR SUPERVISORY DUTIES: Hire, train, and supervise operations staff. Expect to receive and give timely feedback with team members regarding performance and potential. Provide campus-wide leadership. Develop and execute vision and strategic goals for operations departments. Work in conjunction with the program manager to ensure a high level of student service. Serve in the emergency on-call rotation and help to facilitate evacuations as needed. Occasionally brief and debrief field courses.

FUNDS AND/OR PROPERTY: Responsible for assisting operations staff in tracking equipment, facilities, kitchen, rations, and vehicle maintenance budgets. Will have check signing authority and hold a NOLS credit card. Responsible for timely and accurate tracking of expenses and receipts.


  • Hire and train operations staff in: outdoor equipment, rations, kitchen, transportation, and facilities.
  • Build operations calendar and schedules for all departments.
  • Write contracts for all operations staff and act as a liaison with staff and HR regarding visa and employment paperwork requirements as needed.
  • Provide effective supervision (clear expectations, training, periodic individual check-ins, and growth-oriented evaluations) to ensure all operations departments function effectively and provide an exceptional student and staff experience while at NOLS Southwest.
  • Assist program manager and supervising director in planning operations department budgets.
  • Implement all operations department budgets, including equipment, rations, kitchen, transportation, and facilities.
  • Manage the acquisition and selling of short-term assets. 
  • Monitor NOLS Southwest’s equipment inventory requirements, the selection and ordering of equipment, and provide long-range planning in this area to the Southwest equipment manager.
  • Oversee the NOLS Southwest food services, including course rations and campus kitchen services (including health department regulations). 
  • Plan and execute the maintenance, acquisition, cleanliness, and safety of campus and its vehicles, equipment, and supplies.
  • Coordinate and oversee all scheduled maintenance and upkeep on campus and meeting environmental, labor, and sanitation requirements in the state of Arizona.
  • Manage, maintain, and offer technical support for telephone, computer networking systems, and campus facilities at NOLS Southwest. Act as an on-site liaison for NOLS information systems to provide network management and troubleshooting. 
  • Maintain good relations between NOLS Southwest and NOLS finance, purchasing, information systems, and other departments at NOLS World Headquarters.
  • Share evacuation coordinator duties and manage evacuations as needed. 
  • Brief and debrief courses on an occasional, as-needed basis. 
  • Other duties as assigned by the SW Program Manager.

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY: NOLS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, genetics information, disability unrelated to job or admission requirements, or status as a protected veteran. The school’s nondiscrimination policy applies to all phases of its employment process, its admission and financial aid programs, and to all other aspects of its educational programs and activities. Retaliation directed to any person who pursues a discrimination complaint or grievance, participates in a discrimination investigation, or otherwise opposes unlawful discrimination is prohibited.

CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECK: A criminal background check is required from all NOLS employees. 

E-VERIFY: NOLS Participates in E-Verify.

MOTOR VEHICLE RECORD: Applicants must be at least 21 years of age by the position start date and possess a valid driver’s license. Must have a clean driving history and be able to meet the criteria for NOLS vehicle insurance coverage..

WORK LOCATION & CONDITIONS: NOLS Southwest campus in Tucson, AZ. A moderate campus fee applies for staff living on site. Housing is available on-site. Meals are provided when students are on campus and staff are expected to participate in student meals. Kitchen and living areas are shared with other NOLS Southwest staff and field instructors.

This is a 9 to10-month position, that allows for summer instructional work if desired.

HOW TO APPLY: Send a cover letter and résumé to: 
Debbie Derbish
Phone: 307-335-2229

Contact: Ryan Williams, NOLS Southwest program manager, with questions.
Email: ryan_williams@nols.edu
Phone: 712-339-1495


STARTING DATE: September 1, 2021

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