Thank you for your interest in applying to be a representative of the DDCSP Alumni Steering Committee.

To date, the purpose of the DDCSP Alumni Network has been to cultivate a supportive community where a new generation of conservation leaders can connect, build their capabilities, and unleash their collective power. An evaluation of the DDCSP Alumni Network completed last fall concluded that alumni generally feel that the beginning phase has been successful, and that alumni see a number of valuable adaptations and opportunities to build on this success.

While the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) and Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) led the initial development of the Network since 2017, for its next phase of growth there is a desire to begin to transition Network leadership more fully to DDCSP alumni. Currently ELP is in the process of renewing its three-year contract with DDCF to support network development. Centering the collective vision of alumni is paramount is fundamental to this renewal process.

Over the next four to five months, 8-10 DDCSP Alumni will participate in the DDCSP Alumni Steering Committee. The Committee will be convened both in-person and online and will work to co-create the vision of success and the goals for the Alumni Network, develop ideas for near-term Network governance, and grapple with key strategic questions about the Network’s activities (e.g., Homecoming, ALCs). While the Committee position is temporary, the hope is that the ideas created by this group will lead to a new model of alumni governance and representation for the future. 

Roles and responsibilities of DDCSP Alumni representatives from February 2020 - June 2020:

  • Develop a vision of success for what the DDCSP Alumni Network might look like in 2030 
  • Provide guidance on the prioritization and implementation of key activities (e.g., Homecoming, webinars, regional meetups, ALCs etc.) that are grounded in the results of the Network evaluation and align with the vision of success. This will include learning about prioritizing activities within budgetary and capacity constraints. 
  • Co-create the future governance structure for the Alumni Network
  • Review the draft contract between DDCF and ELP and provide feedback


  • Three 1.5 hour online calls before an in-person meeting in May (between late February-April); these will likely take place around 7-8:30pm ET. These calls will be recorded. 
  • An in-person convening May 14-17 on the East Coast. We anticipate Committee members would arrive on the evening of Thursday, May 14 and depart either Sunday, May 17 or the evening of Saturday, May 16. 
  • 1.5 hour online call in June to discuss the DDCF-ELP contract. 
  • 1 hour of planning/reading before each online call
  • Two to four hours of planning/reading before the in-person convening 

Honoraria and travel 

  • $1,000 honoraria for participation. 
  • All transportation, lodging, and meals for the in-person meeting will be covered by DDCF (these costs will be paid for in advance; other travel-related costs for this meeting will be reimbursed). 

Selection process 

We hope the Steering Committee will reflect the diversity of experiences of the Alumni Network. 

As part of representing the diversity of experiences of the Alumni Network through 8-10 representatives, we are looking for representation across these spectrums:

  • Programs (at least one alum from each program) 
  • Program years (ranging from the 2014-2018 cohorts) 
  • Involvement and engagement in the Network (from highly engaged to disengaged members) 
  • Interest in nature conservation/career goals in conservation. Given DDCSP’s goal of cultivating conservation leaders, Alumni with continued interests in a career in conservation will be more heavily represented on the Steering Committee 

Staff from ELP, DDCF, and Peter Szabo, consultant to DDCF, will review each application and make selection decisions based on the representation criteria above. 

It is recognized that setting a number of 8-10 alumni representatives for this convening has inferred power dynamics.  The idea is to find a starting place for representation and governance, and build from there.