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Director of Transportation & Environmental Services

City of Alexandria, Virginia
Alexandria City County, Virginia
150,000 - 200,000
Closing date
May 28, 2023

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The City of Alexandria is seeking applications for their next Director of Transportation & Environmental Services.  Alexandria is located in northern Virginia and is bordered by the District of Columbia (Potomac River), and Arlington and Fairfax counties. With a population of approximately 160,000 and a land area of 15.75 square miles, Alexandria is the seventh largest city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. It’s a unique, historic place that is experiencing substantial urban redevelopment pressures and opportunities as a result of a high market demand for urban living in a quality environment. The city is part of a large metropolitan area and the Nation’s Capital, yet it has retained its historic character. City government is responsible for 561 lane miles of roads; 185 miles of storm sewers; 240 miles of sanitary sewer; nearly 350 miles of sidewalks and shared use paths; and 900 acres of protected open space.  


The Director of Transportation & Environmental Services provides the overall leadership and strategic direction for the City’s transportation and infrastructure planning, environmental systems management, and public works development and maintenance.   Reporting to a Deputy City Manager, the Director organizes  and directs street, transit, pedestrian, bicycle, sewer infrastructure planning; maintains City streets (including snow removal), sidewalks, waterways, storm and sanitary sewers, bridges; provides  food waste programs, refuse collection, disposal and recycling services; manages air, noise, water quality issues; oversees the provision of transit services; maintains traffic signs and signals; reviews and oversees private sector development related infrastructure; plans for street, highway, transit, pedestrian, bicycle, storm sewer and sanitary sewer, and bridge infrastructure. 


Find details about the position expectations by reviewing the recruitment brochure at


The ideal candidate must have an unblemished record of ethical and professional conduct that can withstand intense public scrutiny, as transportation is one of the highest profile issues that the City government handles. This is in part due to a highly engaged citizenry and media outlets who are interested in transportation issues; the Director of Transportation & Environmental Services must be able to handle criticism and  controversy.  He/she should have a clear and open communication style, excellent listening skills, to negotiate in the public interest and balance conflicting interests, and capable of handling the pressures of managing the trade-offs in an environment with many competing stakeholders.  The Director is expected to develop excellent working relationships with: (1) the City’s Transportation Commission, Environmental Policy Commission, Traffic and Parking Board, Alexandria Transit Company (DASH) Board of Directors and the Alexandria Sanitation Authority (Alexandria Renew Enterprises); (2) Virginia Department of Transportation, Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, regional transportation planning organizations; and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority; (3) Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration; and (4) the various citizen and business community members who serve on issue-specific and neighborhood-specific advisory boards.   


The ideal candidate will be an experienced transportation and public works professional/administrator with outstanding strategic thinking, interpersonal, organization, negotiation and leadership skills. She/he must possess a thorough understanding of the best practices in multi- modal transportation planning policy development and implementation. It is expected that the person selected will also have extensive knowledge and experience in linking transportation and land use planning, as well as environmental and infrastructure planning and management. It is desired that the person selected have knowledge and/or experience in land use planning.


The Director must be collaborative with the community, with other departments and with developers when decisions are being formulated and disputes are being settled, but be committed to making difficult decisions, including when community consensus is not achievable. The selected candidate will need to be skilled in delegating responsibility and in managing through others, in that the sheer volume of issues and capital projects planned and implemented mandates that management practice.  He/she will need to be a clear communicator and able to grasp and articulate to different audiences the issues, thinking, community engagement, and community benefits behind proposed plans recommendations. The person hired for this position will need to be courageous and willing to speak their thoughts when the prevailing opinion may be running counter to those thoughts.  The successful candidate will need to be committed to a non-traditional work schedule, largely to accommodate frequent evening meetings.


Minimum Qualifications


  • Bachelor’s Degree in civil engineering, urban planning, environmental science, public administration or a related field is required.  Candidates possessing an undergraduate engineering degree and a Master’s degree in one of the aforementioned academic disciplines will be viewed favorably. The individual backgrounds of candidates will be reviewed, and the combination of experience, education and training may be considered. Eight (8) years of experience in the public works or planning field at a level equivalent to a division chief; and at least three years of senior supervisory experience.    Extensive experience in complex urban transportation planning similar to Alexandria; in environmental and infrastructure systems management; in public works operations; and in  proactive civic engagement is highly desired.    The selected candidate should have a proven track record of successful implementation of best practices in transportation infrastructure, environmental systems management & related fields.   If selected candidate is an Engineer, possession of, or ability to obtain within six months of hire (or next testing date) a VA Professional Engineers License (P.E.) or AICP designation is desirable.

Compensation & Benefits


The starting salary is competitive and is based upon the background and qualifications of the successful candidate.  The expected hiring range is $150,000 - $200,000 for a well-qualified candidate.  The City of Alexandria has a highly competitive benefits package which includes: annual & sick leave, and holidays; a retirement plan; health insurance, dental plan, life insurance, long-term disability insurance; optional deferred compensation; credit union membership; and an employee assistance program. 


How to Apply


Interested candidates must submit by email a cover letter, resume, and at least five job related references (with email and phone numbers) no later than close of business on May 26, 2023 to Lisa Ward, Senior Associate Please contact Mercer Group Associates:  David Deutsch at 301-343-6033 or Lisa Ward at 706-983-9326 with any questions. 




The City of Alexandria is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The City of Alexandria does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, country of origin, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identification, political affiliation, or status in any group protected by federal, State or local law in employment or the provision of services.


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