Job Opportunities

Join the team at Heritage Farm!

For more than 43 years, Seed Savers Exchange, a non-profit, nationally-focused organization based in the Driftless Region on the outskirts of Decorah, Iowa (near where Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota converge on the Mississippi), has focused on conserving and promoting America's culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations. Seed Savers Exchange was a pioneer in the advocacy for preserving these heirloom varieties for generations to come, and is committed to keeping these varieties where they belong—in our gardens and on our tables.

Please email a cover letter, resumé, and the contact information for three references to - include the name of the position in the subject line of your email. Applications may also be mailed to: Seed Savers Exchange | Attn: Lynne Rilling | 3094 North Winn Rd. | Decorah, IA 52101.

We are an equal opportunity employer.

Current Opportunities

Lillian Goldman Visitor Center Sales Associate
Seed Bank Manager

Lillian Goldman Visitor Center Sales Associate

Seed Savers Exchange is seeking a Visitor Center Sales Associate to join our team. The ideal candidate should have retail experience, some garden knowledge, and the ability to work well within a team. The Visitor Center Sales Associate will assist the visitors of Heritage Farm by offering help to customers purchasing merchandise related to the SSE mission. The Visitor Center Sales Associate will also assist visitors by answering questions in regard to Seed Savers Exchange and its origin and future mission, and Heritage Farm trails and gardens.

This is a full-time, benefits-eligible position working 40 hours per week year round. From March 1-October 31 works Sunday through Thursday, 9:00-5:30 at the Visitor Center. From November 1-February 28 works Monday-Friday 8:00-4:30 in order fulfillment in the Seed House.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities
  • Answer visitors' questions and connect them to other associates who have expertise if needed
  • Comply with the security processes, policies, and procedures established while using the POS system
  • Distribute the "Visit Us” brochures to area tourism attractions
  • Have a complete understanding of educational and training materials
  • Offer suggestions to the managers for new merchandise
  • Barcode products as they arrive and place on the floor for sale
  • Organize and replenish inventory as needed
  • Make sure there is change in the registers and put in change orders
  • Maintain transplants during the transplant season, including watering and restocking
  • On weekends, share in the feeding of the fowl
  • Assist in gardening duties as assigned- such as weeding, planting, transplants/seeds, watering, pruning, composting, etc.
Customer Service Skills
  • Friendly, patient, and responsive
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to focus and prioritize
  • Detail oriented and organized
  • Ability to work efficiently and effectively in a very fast paced environment
  • Ability to work with diverse personality types
Physical Requirements
  • Able to tend to store requirements and/or garden duties that will involve lifting up to 50 lbs, bending, stretching, kneeling, and walking
  • High School diploma or GED
  • Gardening knowledge and skills preferred
  • Business/retail skills preferred
  • Paid time off
  • Paid holidays
  • Employee merchandise discounts
  • Health care, retirement and lifestyle benefit

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Seed Bank Manager

Seed Savers Exchange is seeking a Seed Bank Manager to join our team. The Seed Bank Manager will oversee collection inventory, seed viability and health, and the annual regeneration program for the Seed Savers Exchange Seed Bank. The ideal candidate should have a degree in a plant science related field such as horticulture, botany, or agronomy, experience managing a plant collection, have technical expertise with seed biology/storage, and be capable of working in a fast-paced environment.

Applications accepted through July 17, 2019.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities
  • Prioritize and schedule accessions for annual regenerations onsite and offsite
  • Assess inventory and prescribe methods to determine collection value
  • Make timely decisions on regeneration plantings such as replacement growouts and when to restore purity
  • Ensure purity for varieties grown for regeneration by scouting in field
  • Assess and identify redundancy and accession integrity
  • Oversee packaging seed inventory including assigning harvests to appropriate packets
  • Prioritize accessions for seed germination tests
  • Prioritize varieties to reaccession to replace inventory
  • Lead pathology testing of seed crops including ELISAs tests for lettuce and squash
Supervisory Responsibilities
  • Oversee germination technician and inventory technician
  • Oversee volunteers, interns, and work-study students
Internal-Department Responsibilities
  • Assist with field work, seed packaging, seed pull, and distributions as needed
  • Assist preservation with annual corn hand pollination program
External-Department Responsibilities
  • Assist with Seed House order fulfillment
  • Work with Marketing and Communications team to write compelling articles and blogs
  • Represent Seed Savers Exchange at on-and off-site events, conferences, and workshops
  • Proven experience working with limited supervision
  • Strong analytical and creative problem solving skills
  • Exceptional communication, interpersonal, and time-management skills
  • Ability to prioritize competing short-term and long-term projects and tasks
  • Excellent attention to detail and strong organizational skills
Physical Requirements
  • Ability to sit and stand for long periods
  • During field work, ability to work in temperature extremes
  • Ability to lift 25 pounds regularly
  • Bachelor’s degree in plant science field such as horticulture, botany, agronomy, plant pathology
  • Experience working in a supervisory level position
  • Knowledge of seed biology or physiology
  • Demonstrated record of successfully working independently and as part of a team
  • Paid time off
  • Paid holidays
  • Health care, retirement, and lifestyle benefits

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Seed Savers Exchange is an equal opportunity employer and enthusiastically encourages people from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences to apply. Seed Savers Exchange does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, mental or physical disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation or any other basis prohibited by law.

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