Water Resource Planning Unit Supervisor

Seattle Public Utilities
Seattle, Washington State
$62.74 - $72.75 Hourly
Closing date
Feb 19, 2023

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Water Resources Engineering
Position Type
Organization Type

Are you an experienced water resource professional wanting to lead and direct all real-time river and reservoir operations and provide long-term planning support of Seattle water supplies? Want to serve as a key point of accountability for SPU's water resources and be responsible for teams that provide analysis, technical information, and modeling to support efficient and forward-looking comprehensive water resource planning and environmental compliance? If so, then apply to this Water Resource Planning Unit Supervisor opening!


Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) is seeking a Water Resource Planning Unit Supervisor who will oversee the Water Resources Planning Unit and will be responsible for developing and implementing critical water supply operations, strategies, and plans for SPU’s Water Line of Business. The work supports strategic business decisions in the Water Resources business area and focuses on programs and projects that ensure Seattle Public Utilities customers and instream resources (i.e., ESA listed threatened salmon and steelhead) in the Cedar River and South Fork Tolt River have sufficient water to meet their needs, both in the present and for the foreseeable future.


About Seattle Public Utilities: Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) is a Community Centered Utility whose mission is to foster healthy people, environment, and economy by partnering with our community to equitably manage water and waste resources for today and future generations. We deliver high quality, vital services, across four major lines of business: providing water, solid waste, drainage and wastewater services for Seattle residents and businesses. In addition, SPU provides drinking water for 1.5 million regional customers in Seattle and other municipalities. Our customers depend on us to deliver high quality, reliable, and cost-conscious utility services and to achieve the highest benefits possible for every investment we make.

For more information about Seattle Public Utilities (SPU), please visit: 

SPU commits to Our City Values and Race and Social Justice as core principles that guide our work. We actively take steps to dismantle systemic racism and increase service equity. We value diverse life experiences and strive to create a workplace that is welcoming to all. We take steps to be inclusive and equitable in our recruiting, hiring and promotional opportunities.

Why join us?

We know work isn't only about what you do it’s also about who you work for and with! SPU provides a fun and family-friendly work environment that supports a work life balance, including: 

  • Hybrid work schedule opportunities
  • Family-friendly and multicultural work environment 
  • Generous benefits package  
  • Free public transportation options 
  • City pension plan with employer/employee contributions 
  • Growth potential and advancement opportunities 


Job Responsibilities


  • Supervises a team of two currently, that provides complex analysis of precipitation, temperature, evaporation, and other hydrologic processes to support critical surface water reservoirs and river management decisions by Seattle Public Utilities.
  • Leads and supports a team providing real-time 24/7, 365 days a year, monitoring and managing of the City of Seattle's water supply to ensure Seattle Public Utilities is providing high quality drinking water to customers while protecting threatened fish species under the Endangered Species Act and meeting regulated in-stream flow requirements.
  • Oversees and provides critical operational instructions to various groups that operate dams, reservoirs, hydropower plants, and water treatment facilities.
  • Maintains ongoing formal and informal agreements with state, federal and local resource agencies, and Indian Tribes.
  • Interacts with large audiences to provide updates on water supply operations and near-term to long-term planning.
  • Oversees the maintenance and operation of continuous simulation models and sophisticated computer programs to evaluate watershed hydrology, optimize reservoir surface water elevations, and evaluate potential floods, droughts, and other events.
  • Supports the Water Resources Section through the development and implementation of water supply operations, strategies, and plans.
  • Leads and supports strategic business decisions based on the analysis and interpretation of highly complex climate change data as it relates to Seattle's municipal water supply, instream resources, flood management and hydropower generation.
  • Advises and makes recommendations to top management and informs key agency stakeholders on matters relating to managing the City of Seattle's water supply.
  • Works with members of other cities, local, state, federal and tribal resource agencies, including Seattle City Light, City of Renton, King County, Washington State Department of Ecology, Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Services, U.S. Geological Survey, Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, and Tulalip Tribes.
  • Oversees engineers, hydrologist, and other professionals responsible for performing the most complex and difficult professional civil engineering work.

Please note this job advertisement is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities, and activities may change at any time with or without notice.




Minimum Qualifications 

  • Three (3) years professional civil engineering experience equivalent to the Associate Civil Engineer level, including two (2) years supervisory experience. 


  • Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering or Civil Engineering Technology. 


  • Other combinations of education and/or experience which provides preparation to do professional civil engineering work.


Work Environment/Physical Demands

  • Most work is performed in a normal City work/office environment.  
  • Field assignments entail exposure to all types of weather, traffic, hazardous/toxic substances and work in or near construction sites. 
  • May be required to lift over 50 pounds. 
  • May be required to stand, walk, or bend for extended periods of time.
  • May be required to work nights, evenings, weekends, and/or holidays.
  • Overnight travel may be required.


License, Certification and Other Requirements


The ideal candidate will have some or all of the following experience:

  • Five (5) years professional civil engineering experience equivalent to the Associate Civil Engineer level, including three (3) years supervisory experience. 



  • Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering or Civil Engineering Technology. 



  • Other combinations of education and/or experience which provides preparation to do professional civil engineering work.


Additional Skills and Experience an Ideal Candidate Should Possess:

  • Three (3) years’ experience overseeing, maintaining, and operating continuous simulation models and sophisticated computer programs to evaluate watershed hydrology, manage large reservoirs, and evaluate flooding impacts, droughts, and other large-scale events.
  • Strong computers skills for programming models and analyzing vast amounts of complex data.
  • The ability to write clear and concise technical reports in a timely manner.
  • Demonstrated ability to successfully work well in a team environment, delivering complex multiyear projects.



Additional Information


Application Requirements:

  • An online application including response to the supplemental questionnaire must be fully completed for consideration.

    Please DO NOT attach resumes and cover letters, as they will not be considered in the review of candidate's qualifications.

  • City of Seattle COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate

    All City of Seattle employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Failure to submit proof of vaccination or qualify for a reasonable accommodation will result in withdrawal of a job offer.


    Workplace Environment (*Telework Expectation):

    Most work is performed in a normal City work/office environment; however, due to the ongoing pandemic and Covid-19 state and local restrictions, hybrid telework/office/field assignment work will be available consistent with HR guidelines, and as circumstances dictate. We continue to seek guidance from local public health agencies and will proceed accordingly with any necessary changed or needs regarding "workplace location" expectations.


    This position allows for the flexibility of a flexible work schedule. Beginning November 1, 2022, employees will be required to come into the office twice a week. Individual schedules will be agreed upon by the employee and their supervisor.


    Who may apply: The City of Seattle encourages people of all backgrounds to apply, including people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ, people with disabilities, veterans, and those with diverse life experience. This position is open to all qualified candidates that meet the minimum qualifications. The City of Seattle values diverse perspectives and life experiences. Applicants will be considered regardless of race, color, creed, national origin,

    ancestry, sex, marital status, disability, religious or political affiliation, age, sexual orientation, or gender identity.


    This hiring process involves a background check of conviction and arrest records in compliance with Seattle’s Fair Chance Employment Ordinance, SMC 14.17.   Applicants will be provided an opportunity to explain or correct background information.

    The City of Seattle offers a comprehensive benefits package including vacation, holiday, and sick leave as well as medical, dental, vision, life and long-term disability insurance for employees and their dependents.
    More information about employee benefits is available on the City's website at: https://www.seattle.gov/human-resources/benefits/employees-and-covered-family-members/most-employees-plans

    Learn more about Seattle Public Utilities at our web page www.seattle.gov/util/.

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