Position type: Full-time for 10.5 months, salaried, permanent/seasonal

Location: Silver Falls State Park, Sublimity, Oregon: April-October/remote in greater Portland/Salem areas January-March and November

Compensation: Salary is $42,000 for a 10.5-month position, or $4,000 per month

Benefits: 15 days paid vacation plus 6 holidays/80% health, dental, vision coverage/annual professional development stipend/business mileage

Perks: Basic housing on site/Staff housing in greater Salem area for subsidized rate (optional)

Program: Opal Creek Outdoor School (spring/fall); YMCA Camp Silver Creek Camp (summer)

As the Head Chef, you create, plan, purchase, and facilitate a rotating menu of buffet-style meals in our renowned Opal Creek Kitchen. We believe it’s the most delicious food you’ll ever find in a camp facility: seasonal, hearty, kid- and adult-friendly fare. Your backdrop will be the forests, creeks, and waterfalls of Silver Falls State Park, Oregon’s most beloved and largest state park and the ancestral home of the Kalapuya and Molalla Tribes.

After a three-year hiatus, the Opal Creek Kitchen is relaunching to support both outdoor school and camp programming. Over the course of the season, you’ll design a menu, secure vendors and arrange deliveries, cater meals to guests’ dietary restrictions and allergies, purchase food and manage a budget, and oversee the health and safety of the kitchen. You’ll lead a team of four cooks that prepare meals for on average 100 people and as many as 160 people. As the first Head Chef in a new location, you’ll play a key role in shaping the food service experience for students, campers, and staff for years to come!

Qualifications, Skills, and Experience

A successful candidate will possess these minimum qualifications. We are less interested in the titles you’ve held and more interested in what you’ve actually done and who you are.

● 2+ years food service coordination experience, including: menu-planning, ordering, and dietary accommodations

● 2+ years in a high-volume, commercial, or camp kitchen

● Experience with from-scratch cooking and baking

● Experience leading adults and creating a positive work and team environment

● Experience with health inspections and corrective actions required by HHS

● Strong communication skills, written and verbal

● Strong organizational skills & attention to detail

● Previous experience integrating equity, inclusion, and cultural relevance into food service and the workplace

● COVID-19 vaccine (by time of employment)

● Safe food handling practices

● Able to pass a criminal background check

Tagged as: Camp Staff, Conservation, Cooks and Food Service, Instruction and Guiding

About Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center

Our mission is to provide transformative wilderness experiences that grow a community of environmental advocates. All of our work is based around one simple idea: people will protect what they care about, and they will care about what they know. Through our outdoor school and backpacking expedition programs, we bring youth and adults face-to-face with the outdoor places that make Oregon great—pristine mountain streams, uncut vistas, and old-growth forests.

Application Instructions

Please submit an application by visiting the employment page of our website. The application includes a series of questions and asks you to upload a detailed resume in PDF format. Be sure to include any relevant experience and certifications, both professional and personal experience.This position is open until filled. Our program season launched in April, and we are looking for the right candidate to settle in and lead our dynamic team of cooks.