Spills Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Program Manager; WA State Department of Ecology

Job Title: 
Spills Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Program Manager
Job Location: 
Lacey, Washington
Full-Time Permanent
$95,000.00 - 127,029.00/ year

The Department of Ecology is looking to fill the Spills Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Program Manager (EMS Band 3) position. This position is located in our Headquarters Office in Lacey, WA.

Lead one of the nation’s premier programs in spill prevention, preparedness and response to protect Washington’s environment from oil spills and hazardous materials by formulating and implementing policy, procedures, guidelines, and rules for oil handling facilities, marine vessels, pipelines, rail, and emergency response to spills of all types in all of Washington's 39 counties.

The mission of the Spill Prevention, Preparedness, and Response (Spills) program is to protect, preserve and restore Washington's environment. Our vision is to create a zero spills world. 

Protecting Washington State's environment for current and future generations is what we do every day at Ecology. We are a culture that is invested in making a difference. Join a team that is highly effective, collaborative, with leadership who embrace the value of people.

Ecology cares deeply about employee wellness; we go beyond traditional benefits, proudly offering:

  • A healthy life/work balance by offering flexible schedules and telework options for most positions.
  • An Infants at Work Program that is based on the long-term health values of infant-parent bonding and breastfeeding newborns.
  • Continuous growth and development opportunities. 
  • A wellness program that offers education, and fitness classes; an agency-wide fondness for outdoor meetings.
  • Opportunities to serve your community and make an impact through meaningful work.

Diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect (DEIR) are core values central to Ecology’s work. We strive to be a workplace where we are esteemed for sharing our authentic identities, while advancing our individual professional goals and collaborating to protect, preserve, and enhance the environment for current and future generations.

Diversity: We celebrate and appreciate diversity; our unique perspectives and abilities enrich us all and lead to innovative approaches and solutions.

Equity: We champion equity, recognizing that each of us need different things to thrive.

Inclusion: We intentionally create and hold space so that we all have meaningful opportunities to participate and contribute to Ecology’s work.

Respect: We treat each other with respect and dignity, acknowledging the inherent worth of our diverse perspectives and lived experiences, even in times of uncertainty and disagreement.

We believe that DEIR is both a goal and an action. We are on a journey, honoring our shared humanity and taking steps to demonstrate our commitment to a vision where each of us is heard, seen, and valued.

During Healthy Washington Roadmap to Recovery, employees are working a combination of in-office and/or telework based on position and business need. Ecology is maintaining less than maximum building occupancy, and requiring masks, health screening questions before entry, and social distancing.

Application Timeline: This position will remain open until filled, with an initial screening date of July 2, 2021. The next screening will be on July 21, 2021.  In order to be considered for next screening, please submit an application on or before July 20, 2021. The agency reserves the right to make an appointment any time after the initial screening date.


Who are we looking for?

  • A leader who can organize, inspire and is passionate about protecting our state’s beautiful environmental resources from the damage and danger of oil spills and other toxic pollutants.
  • A team player that will work across the agency to initiate, develop and implement processes, procedures, protocols to support the spills programs responsibilities to prepare for and protect against the environmental damages from toxic spills.
  • A manager that creates and nurtures a performance-based culture of continuous improvement. Is passionate about data informed decision-making, scientific problem solving, customer responsiveness and satisfaction, and maximizing resources across the organization. 
  • A passionate and committed public servant committed to eliminating barriers to increase equity and deliver on government’s promises.
  • Demonstrates a clear commitment to public service. Builds shared responsibility and ownership for advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion.

A Key Member of Ecology's Executive Leadership Team  

It is critical that this important position maintains the highest standards of personal, professional, and ethical conduct to support the state's commitment to efficient, effective, and accountable government.   The incumbent has a highly visible role with other federal and state agencies, legislators, tribes, First Nations, Canadian Federal and Provincial governments, ports, local governments, industry, NGO's, and other interests involved in spill prevention and emergency response to accidents. This position is authorized to administer prevention and contingency plan approvals, legal enforcement actions, contract encumbrances, interpret and/or develop broad departmental policies and negotiate interagency agreements affecting departmental resources. 

As a key member of our Department's Executive Leadership Team, the successful candidate will:

  • Represent the Director with federal, state, local, tribal and elected officials, the general public, environmental groups, environmental justice advocacy groups and the business community.
  • Develop credibility for conceptualizing, initiating, developing, and implementing strategic components of the state's spill prevention, preparedness, and response goals under state law.
  • Make recommendations to the Executive Leadership Team on how to implement programs and develop policies including agency direction for work procedures to ensure responsive service delivery and consistency.
  • Foster a diverse, equitable, inclusive and respectful workplace by modeling the way. 

Why join the team? 

This is an opportunity to make an impact! You'll lead one of the nation’s premier spill response and preparedness programs in a state the prioritizes environmental protection. You will have the opportunity to lead an amazing team of committed, knowledgeable, collaborative employees as they work strategically and proficiently 24/7 to protect our waters and land.

What makes this role unique? 

You’ll be responsible for regulatory and non-regulatory elements of state law including oil spill prevention, vessel and facility spill prevention plan approvals, substantial risk vessel screening inspections, vessel traffic risk modeling, marine oil spill risk assessments for the outer coastline, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, within Grays Harbor, Puget Sound, and on the Columbia River; oil spill preparedness and geographic response plan approvals, the approval of the Northwest Area Oil Spill Contingency Plan signatory, investigations, enforcements, natural resource damage assessments, and cost recovery, maintenance and development of associated information management tools, Oil and HazMat spill response including drug labs, growing operations, response to public requests for assistance in spill management and/or cleanups.

What you’ll do

  • Lead the Spill Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Program in protecting our environment from oil spills and hazardous materials by formulating and implementing policy, procedures, guidelines, and rules for oil handling facilities, marine vessels, pipelines, rail, and emergency response to spills of all types in all of Washington's 39 counties.  
  • Establish the Spill Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Program's strategic direction to carry out Ecology's role in oil spill prevention and emergency response and lead in defining that role.
  • Represent the agency on oil spill prevention, preparedness, and response issues to all stakeholders, including state legislators and Washington's Congressional delegation, the Governor's Office, local government, other state and federal agencies, tribes, environmental groups, business, and the general public.
  • This position represents the State's interests as the Executive Task Force member on the Pacific States/British Columbia Task Force where policies and procedures are established to coordinate as best as possible consistent regulations and practices for the States of California, Oregon, Hawaii, Alaska, Washington and British Columbia for oil spill prevention, preparedness, and response that support the states "zero spills" goal, and trans-boundary impacts from spills. 
  • This position is the Program Administrator for standing up the Crisis Management Team in supporting the early hours of a response. This position represents the state's natural resource trustee interests as the liaison officer within the unified command structure during a spill incident.
  • Represents Ecology and State on the Board of Pilotage Commission as a Commissioner appointed by the Director.
  • This position represents the State's interest on the Regional Response Team and is a co-vice chair for the Northwest Area Committee where policies and procedures are established for Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, for all levels of government that guide our preparedness planning and coordinated response to oil and HazMat incidents. Ensures cross border and transboundary coordination.

Required Qualifications:

There are multiple ways to qualify for this position. See options listed below:

Option 1: A Bachelor's degree AND Seven (7) years of professional level management experience, which includes the following:

  • Five (5) years of professional level supervisory responsibility, including experience managing supervisors.
  • Providing direction to mid-level managers and supervisors in scientific, engineering and/ or public health fields which included coaching, training, recruitment, evaluation and performance.
  • Providing oversight of a program's diverse functions combining and directing all aspects to meet overall program objectives.
  • A minimum of five (5) years of budget management experience.
  • A minimum of three (3) years of strategic planning experience (annual or biennial based business plan) including the ability to conceptualize and articulate the future direction of a program.

Please note: Experience in each of the areas may have been gained concurrently.

Option 2: A Master’s degree in public administration, environmental management or other related fields AND Five (5) years of professional level management experience as listed above.

Option 3: Additional professional level management experience may be used to qualify for this position in lieu of meeting educational requirements. See chart below:

All experience and education combinations that meet the requirements for this position: 

Possible Combinations

College credit hours or degree

Years of required experience - as listed above.

Combination 1: No college credit hours or degree and 11 years of experience

Combination 2: 30-59 semester or 45-89 quarter credits and 10 years of experience

Combination 3: 60-89 semester or 90-134 quarter credits (AA degree) and 9 years of experience

Combination 4: 90-119 semester or 135-179 quarter credits and 8 years of experience

Combination 5: A Bachelor's Degree and 7 years of experience

Combination 6: A Master’s Degree and 5 years of experience

Special Requirements/Conditions of Employment: 

Desired Qualifications: 

We highly encourage you to apply even if you do not have some (or all) of the desired experience below. 

  • Experience as a second-level supervisor.
  • Experience working with or applying policy decisions from the Washington Health Disparities Map.
  • Experience leading or managing in a large agency or organization.
  • Experience working in spill or emergency management response under a unified command structure
  • Working in or collaborating with state government.

Note: Having some (or all) of this desired experience may make your application more competitive in a highly competitive applicant pool.

Ecology seeks diverse applicants: We view diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect through a broad lens including race, ethnicity, class, age, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, immigration status, military background, language, education, life experience, physical disability, neurodiversity, and intersectional identities. Qualified candidates from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Need an Accommodation in the application and/or screening process or this job announcement in an alternative format?

  • Please call: (360) 407-6186 or email: careers [at] ecy.wa.gov and we will be happy to assist.
  • If you are deaf or hard of hearing you can reach the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.
  • If you need assistance applying for this job, please e-mail careers [at] ecy.wa.gov. Please do not send an email to this address to follow-up the status of your application. You can view the latest status of your application on your profile's main page.
  • If you are reading this announcement in print format, please enter the following URL to your search engine to apply: https://ecology.wa.gov/About-us/Get-to-know-us/Jobs-at-Ecology.   

Application Instructions:

It's in the applicant's best interest to submit all of the documents listed below. Applications without these documents may be declined.

  • A cover letter describing why you are interested in this position.
  • A resume outlining your experience and education (if applicable) as it relates to the minimum qualifications of this position.
  • Three professional references.

Please do NOT include your salary history. Wage/salary depends on qualifications or rules of promotion, if applicable.     For Your Privacy: When attaching documents to your application (Resume, Cover Letter, Transcripts, DD-214, etc.):

  • Please be sure to remove private information such as your social security number, date of birth, etc. 
  • Do not attach documents that are password protected, as these documents may not be reviewed and may cause errors within your application when downloaded. 

Application Attestation: 

The act of submitting application materials electronically is considered affirmation that the information is complete and truthful. The state may verify this information and any untruthful or misleading answers are cause for rejection of your application or dismissal if employed. 

Other Information:

If  you have specific questions about the position, please email Heather Bartlett at: Heather.Bartlett [at] ecy.wa.gov.  Please do not contact Heather to inquire about the status of your application.   To request the full position description: email careers [at] ecy.wa.gov

Why work for Ecology?

As an agency, our mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's environment for current and future generations. We invest in our employees to create and sustain a working environment that encourages creative leadership, effective resource management, teamwork, professionalism and accountability.

Joining Ecology means becoming a part of a team committed to protecting and restoring Washington State's environment. A career in public service allows you to help solve some of the most challenging problems facing our state, while keeping your health and financial security a priority. We combine one of the most competitive benefits packages in the nation with a strong commitment to life/work balance.

Ecology employees may be eligible for the following: Medical/Dental/Vision for employee & dependent(s), Public Employees Retirement System (PERS),  Vacation, Sick, and other Leave*, 11 Paid Holidays per year*, Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Tuition Waiver,  Long Term Disability & Life Insurance, Deferred Compensation Programs, Dependent Care Assistance Program (DCAP),  Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA), Employee Assistance Program, Commute Trip Reduction Incentives (Download PDF reader), Combined Fund Drive, SmartHealth *See the Benefits tab in this announcement for more information 

Student debt: how working for Ecology can help The Department of Ecology is a qualifying employer for the Public Service Forgiveness Program (PSLF). See https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans/forgiveness-cancellation/public-service for more details.

To learn more about The Department of Ecology, please visit our website at www.ecology.wa.gov and follow, like or visit us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or our blog.

Equal Opportunity Employer: The Washington State Department of Ecology is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, veterans, military spouses or people with military status, and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application/testing process or this job announcement in an alternative format may call (360) 407-6186. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.

Please note that all jobs are automatically removed once the application deadline passes. Jobs without a deadline are automatically removed after 30 days.