Job Detail

Plant Clinic Manager

Location: Lisle, IL

The Morton Arboretum is a world-renowned leader in tree science and education, working to save and plant trees. The Plant Clinic plays an important role in sharing the Arboretum's mission as a dynamic, public-facing hub of plant information. Whether on the website, over the phone, or through online training, the Plant Clinic works with other departments at the Arboretum to connect people to the science-backed knowledge they need. The Plant Clinic Manager will lead staff and volunteers in the continued evolution of the Plant Clinic to meet the needs of a growing and diverse audience of homeowners and green professionals. The successful candidate will have a solid basis of horticultural knowledge and thrive in a fast-paced, collaborative, and customer-first environment. This is an exciting opportunity for a communicator, innovator, and plant nerd who wants to be a part of an organization dedicated to creating a greener, healthier, and more beautiful world.

Position Summary: Responsible for managing the Plant Clinic, one of the Arboretum’s most visible hubs for tree- and plant-related information. Lead efforts to continually improve how the Plant Clinic operates, what information it provides, and how best to reach its key audiences. In addition to answering over 15,000 questions a year via in-person, phone, and email contacts, the Plant Clinic also works with staff across the organization to create useful, consumer-focused plant information (in the form of website content, videos, brochures, and media interviews) and both online and on-site learning experiences. 

Essential Functions:

  • Responsible for the daily operations of the Plant Clinic, including scheduling shifts, overseeing training, developing procedures, and maintaining consistent customer service standards. 

  • Supervises the Plant Knowledge Specialist, Plant Health Care Outreach Specialist, and 40-50 volunteers. Duties include recruitment and selection, scheduling and job assignments, performance feedback, and staff development and training in keeping with the Arboretum’s policies and procedures.

  • Work with the Plant Knowledge Specialist as well as Knowledge Management, Education, Interpretation, Marketing and Communications, Visitor Services, and Chicago Region Trees Initiative (CRTI) staff to co-create and plan tree/plant information resources (including website content, videos, signs, brochures, tours, classes, events, and workshops) that are relevant to Arboretum audience needs.

  • Work with Development to identify and implement opportunities to engage members, donors, and funders.

  • Proactively seek out new tree/plant knowledge and research (particularly among other Arboretum staff in Horticulture, Living Collections, CRTI, and the Center for Tree Science), and work with the Plant Knowledge Specialist to communicate that research as appropriate and relevant to Plant Clinic staff, volunteers, and clients.

  • Lead efforts to compile, analyze, and use relevant data about key Plant Clinic audiences to better meet their needs.

  • Collaborate with Marketing and Communications to plan and execute a variety of outreach, including social media posts, television interviews, newspaper articles, and off-site events that meet shared plant knowledge communication goals.

  • Answer in-person, phone, and email questions in a timely and professional way.

  • Work with Head of Knowledge Management to evaluate the success of Plant Clinic initiatives and make strategic decisions about Plant Clinic goals.

  • Other duties as required.

Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree in horticulture, plant sciences, or related field required. 3+ years supervisory experience as well as experience collaborating with diverse teams of people. Excellent written and verbal communication skills required. Demonstrated experience with and knowledge of basic tree and plant identification, selection, pests, diseases, and basic horticultural care required. Basic familiarity with pesticide best practices (especially as they relate to trees) preferred. Demonstrated experience with creating tree and plant informational materials or experiences for the public (work samples required). Familiarity with Google for business apps, including Docs, Sheets, and Slides. Teaching experience, particularly with non-expert audiences, preferred. 

Success Factors: Ability to maintain a professional, courteous, and enthusiastic presence with both the public and with volunteers and staff. Desire to learn and try new things. Ability to adapt communication style to different audiences, including donors, green professionals, fellow Arboretum staff members, or members of the general public. Comfortable with using and experimenting with  new technology and digital tools when appropriate. Possess a teaching and coaching orientation, with the drive to guide others to learn more. Willingness to actively seek out opportunities for collaborating with other staff and external partners. Ability to weigh decisions, establish priorities, and set goals for themselves and others based on data, the Arboretum’s mission, and the current strategic plan. Ability to embrace and align with the organization’s employee core values to be inclusive, take ownership, work together, keep learning, and make the Arboretum exceptional.

Physical Demands and Work Environment: The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.

  • Physical Demands: Requires some physical activity: walking over uneven terrain, bending, limited lifting and carrying, and some local travel.

  • Work Environment: Work is performed primarily indoors, although travel within the grounds and buildings of the Arboretum is required. This position is designated as a hybrid-eligible position, allowing for some work to be performed off premise, during regular hours of work.

  • Equipment: General office equipment, digital camera, microscope.

All Arboretum employees will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and provide proof of that status in order to maintain their employment.


To apply, visit:

Employer Info

4100 IL Route 53
Lisle, Illinois 60532


  • Manager

Back to Job Listings