Employment

About Urban Growers Collective

Urban Growers Collective (UGC) was founded by Laurell Sims and Erika Allen in the fall of 2017. Rooted in Growing Food, we cultivate nourishing environments which support health, economic development, healing and creativity through urban agriculture. Our approach is to demonstrate and support development of community- based food systems where produce is grown, prepared, and distributed within neighborhoods. In this way, communities help themselves by learning how to provide for their own needs in a sustainable manner.

UGC is built upon the foundation of Growing Power, a nonprofit organization and land trust established in Milwaukee, WI in 1993. Growing Power operated its urban farming and education non-profit for 25-years before closing its doors in the Fall of 2017. The Growing Power Chicago branch was established in February 2002, to address the need for scalable food system models that were inclusive, impactful, and economically viable. After Growing Power closed, Chicago’s leadership team, committed to continuing the legacy of Growing Power, formed UGC to build upon our 15-years of successes creating thriving urban farms and training programs in Chicago.

UGC tackles food insecurity through a variety of programming. Our portfolio of programs includes: the Fresh Moves Mobile Market; Farmers for Chicago, our job-readiness program which trains over 300 teens annually, 30 formerly incarcerated adults through an 18-month job-training program, as well as our Incubator Farmer program which provides land and technical assistance for new Chicago farmers; our head- start preschool farm which serves over 150 preschoolers and their families; and finally, we provide education to a larger audience through a series of agriculture, small business development, and equality building workshops. Our core values honor shared leadership and collective decision making; racial, economic, gender and LGBTQ equity; and employee well-being: we have witnessed how these values lead to thoughtful, holistic programming and yield environments that nourish and create prosperity.

If you are looking for internship opportunities, please click here.

Job Description: Development Associate

Position: The Development Associate assists in coordinating planning and organizing all of Urban Growers Collective’s fundraising including, the major gifts program, planned giving, and special events.  The Associate works closely with the Executive Directors and the Board of Directors in all development and fund raising endeavors.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Grow a major gifts program including identification, cultivation and solicitation of major donors;
  • Assist with grant seeking including research, proposal writing, and reporting requirements;
  • Coordinate capital campaigns and other major fundraising drives;
  • Direct the annual gala, including mailings and annual fundraising drives;
  • Responsible for maintaining calendar of submission dates for foundation, submission of proposals from grant writers for federal, and corporate sources and reporting deadlines; 
  • Oversee fundraising database of partner information and tracking in NEON;
  • Comfortable soliciting donations in person and over the phone;
  • Work closely with co-Executive Directors and the Board of Directors;
  • Schedule and agenda development for Board of Director meetings;
  • Promote UGC programs at special events and community meetings;
  • Produce and distribute correspondence of letters and emails, as well as acknowledgment and thank-you letters; and
  • Carry out administrative duties such as filing, typing, copying, binding, and scanning.

Qualifications: 

  • A Bachelor’s degree is required.
  • Minimum of two-years related experience in fundraising and development.
  • Excellent attention to detail, organizational and problem solving skills.
  • Robust written communication skills; strong editing skills and ability to write clearly and concisely. 
  • Strong computer skills with proficiency in MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.).
  • Ability to work in an open-office environment.
  • Friendly and positive demeanor with a willingness to take feedback and grow as an employee. 
  • Must be able to work well under pressure in a team environment, handle multiple assignments, and meet deadlines. 
  • Ability to work as a team and gather necessary information from program, finance, and development staff.
  • Passion for sustainable food systems and urban agriculture. 

UGC provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sexual orientation, sex, gender identity,  national origin, age, disability or genetics.

Competitive/commensurate with experience and other qualifications.

Please send resume and three professional references to info@urbangrowerscollective.org.

Job Description: Administrative Assistant

Position: We are seeking an individual who has an interest in all aspects of sustainable urban agriculture activities, focusing the bulk of their duties on providing administrative support to the executive team and management staff. The position is dynamic and requires a well-organized individual with excellent communication skills, as well as the ability to work well with diverse individuals and communities.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Keep daily log of and respond promptly to phone calls (including caller, phone number, time of call, and topic of call) and emails. Distribute pertinent calls to department heads as needed.  Maintain a system to track that follow-up occurs in a timely manner;
  • Provide information to the public by answering general questions about the organization and greet visitors in a kind and friendly manner;
  • Manage office inventory of supplies and place orders when supplies run low;
  • Basic book-keeping, filing of receipts and reconciliation of accounts;
  • Prepare and monitor invoices;
  • Maintain up-to-date employee holiday records;
  • Produce and distribute correspondence of letters and emails;
  • Carry out administrative duties such as filing, typing, copying, binding, scanning etc.
  • Assist farm and supervisors with correspondence including, but not limited to, creating signs and documents, printing, and ordering supplies;
  • Contribute to team effort by accomplishing related results as needed;
  • Keep Main office clean, e.g. files are organized, trash is taken out, office is “presentable” at all times; 
  • Maintain computer and manual filing systems;
  • Receive, sort and distribute the mail daily;
  • Coordinate repairs to office equipment; and 
  • Organize and schedule meetings and appointments;

Qualifications: 

  • Bachelor’s degree is preferred but not required.
  • Minimum of two-years related experience in an administrative role.
  • Excellent attention to detail, organizational and problem solving skills.
  • Robust written communication skills; strong editing skills and ability to write clearly and concisely. 
  • Strong computer skills with proficiency in MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.).
  • Ability to work in an open-office environment.
  • Friendly and positive demeanor with a willingness to take feedback and grow as an employee. 
  • Must be able to work well under pressure in a team environment, handle multiple assignments, and meet deadlines. 
  • Ability to work as a team and gather necessary information from program, finance, and development staff.
  • Passion for sustainable food systems and urban agriculture. 

UGC provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sexual orientation, sex, gender identity,  national origin, age, disability or genetics.

Competitive/commensurate with experience and other qualifications.

Please send resume and three professional references to info@urbangrowerscollective.org.

Job Description: Fresh Moves Outreach CDL Driver

Position Description:  Urban Growers Collective Fresh Moves Mobile Market Program seeks an experienced driver. Fresh Moves stops are each 90 – 120 minutes with approximately 15 – 20 stops each week. Fresh Moves operates year-round, with the exception of holidays, and a two-week break between Christmas and New Year’s Day. This position is currently part-time, with potential of full-time employment. View the full job description here.

Responsibilities:

  • Drive to community-based Fresh Moves bus stops in accordance with our weekly schedule; communicate with site coordinators to ensure safe and accessible parking for the bus.
  • Keeping the bus on schedule for each site;
  • Fuel bus daily and inspecting all buses to schedule regular maintenance;
  • Support sales and outreach at each site as needed, ensure that customers can get on the bus easily and that produce, boxes and debris does not inhibit the pathway;
  • Transportation of produce from local farms, farmers markets, wholesalers and other suppliers;
  • Assist with stocking bus with produce and support inventory and quality assurance of produce in collaboration with sales staff; Must have the ability to lift 40 pounds; and
  • When buses are out-of-service, drivers may be given the opportunity to work on the farm for additional hours if requested.

Qualifications:

  • Applicant must have an excellent driving record and their CDL license must be current. Must include an air brake endorsement.
  • Driver must be dependable and on time;
  • Knowledge of produce handling and wholesale food operations is helpful, but not necessary;
  • Excellent Communication skills — must be able to assist customers in a kind and thoughtful way, as well as communicate with supervisors and site managers to address issues.
  • Ability to problem solve difficult situations and take feedback.
  • Competency working with communities of color and diverse workplace; enjoys working with people.

Please send resume and three professional references to: Fresh Moves Mobile Market, freshmoves@urbangrowerscollective.org.


UGC provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sexual orientation, sex, gender identity,  national origin, age, disability or genetics.