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Senior Environmental Permit Specialist/Project Manager

Job Details

Seattle, Portland, Bend - Seattle, WA
Bachelor's Degree
$114,296.00 - $171,144.00 Salary


Environmental Science Associates (ESA) is seeking a highly motivated Senior Environmental Permit Specialist/Project Manager with the intellectual curiosity and initiative to help drive the growth of our dynamic team of environmental consultants in the Pacific Northwest. This is a senior-level opportunity in our Water Resources team of professionals who provide expertise for state agencies, local municipalities, and water and wastewater districts throughout the Puget Sound region and the Northwest. The position will be focused on leading federal, state, and local environmental permitting aspects of a wide variety of projects, SEPA and NEPA compliance, and fish-passage-related work in the Northwest region. This opportunity is focused on collaboration, quality, outstanding client service, and being part of a team with a passion to do great work and have fun together.  


We are passionate about helping communities address the challenges of our urban communities in the 21st century. We value creative thinking, diversity, and multi-disciplinary and cross-disciplinary engagement and integration. As a Senior Environmental Permit Specialist, you will be focused on the pursuit and management of complex, high-visibility projects that bring prestige and accolades to the firm and to our Pacific Northwest clients. Our practice includes environmental planners and permits specialists, scientists, and designers who are engaged in the highest profile, most complex, and interesting projects in the region.


In the Northwest, our dynamic group of employee-owners is working on projects for clients such as the City of Bellevue, City of Tacoma, Pierce County, King County, the Port of Seattle, and many other public and private sector clients. Our team thrives on being at the leading edge of environmental and climate science, planning, and policy in the Pacific Northwest. You will be client-focused, fostering relationships with ESA’s existing clients, engaging in the professional community, and developing and expanding new clients. You will love our company culture which fosters ownership and collaboration in a flexible, fun work environment that supports your professional growth and success.

When you join ESA and become part of our high-powered team of employee owners, your role as a Senior Environmental Permit Specialist will work with ESA’s diverse teams in the Puget Sound region and the Portland metropolitan area, with opportunities to work in other locations on occasion. As a team, we will work together to achieve the firm’s strategic goal of growing ESA’s practice throughout the Northwest. The hallmarks of our work together will be a high level of client engagement and leadership on significant projects that benefit our local communities.  Our work leads to professional accomplishment and recognition, from our clients and professional organizations.


Who We Are


We are a 100% employee-owned environmental consulting firm that values diversity and inclusion and celebrates the differences that make each of us unique. Our culture is built on mutual respect, recognizing that our variety of backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives leads to better solutions, which fosters our continued success for our employee-owners and clients.


Who You Are


You hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree with major course work in environmental, planning, biology, public policy, science, or a related interdisciplinary field and have a minimum of 15 years of experience in leading or directing the development of high-quality community and environmental analyses including federal, state and local environmental permitting, SEPA and NEPA documentation and client deliverables for both public agency and private development clients. You have led or been a project manager for at least one complex permitting project in Washington state. You have hands-on experience, a get-it-done attitude, and a working knowledge base of SEPA, land use and environmental permitting, and relevant regulatory and environmental regulations and processes in Washington state.


You are known for preparing documents that are clear, concise, well-written, and supported, and for your ability to present information understandably and speak persuasively about complex topics to colleagues, clients, agency staff, teaming partners, other project stakeholders, and the general public.


You are a collaborative and supportive team member and communicator who takes the initiative to identify and contribute to broad project or team goals, providing mentoring and coaching to more junior staff to foster team success. You work collaboratively with clients and interdisciplinary teams to deliver your projects on time and within budget and have developed and tracked scope, schedules, and budgets.


You are an environmental specialist who has significant experience working on a variety of project types, such as: transportation; utility; airports; seaports; public infrastructure; recreation and parks; adaptation/resiliency; land use code analysis, environmental permit applications and compliance; sustainability and climate change; and foundational elements of SEPA and NEPA in Washington state.


You possess excellent oral and presentation skills and have led and directed marketing and business development pursuits including developing capture strategies, and leading proposals, interviews, and presentations. You have an interest in business development and have experience acquiring work through your existing network.


You are located in Oregon or Washington.


What You Will Do for ESA


You will serve as Project Manager or Senior Environmental Permit Specialist, and/or contributing author for SEPA and NEPA documents for a variety of projects. As a senior-level Environmental Planner, you will lead or direct multi-faceted permitting projects in collaboration with scientists, engineers, archaeologists, landscape architects and other specialists on larger and more complex municipal and private development projects.


You will demonstrate a clear understanding of project management principles and practices and be responsible for the development of environmental compliance and planning documents in accordance with applicable guidelines and requirements, while delivering assignments within budget and schedule.


Serve as a permit specialist, and/or SEPA specialist, preparing and managing complex environmental documents including federal permit applications, SEPA checklists and Environmental Impact Statements. You may specialize in project-level environmental review or programmatic planning documents. You may also specialize in zoning code review and analysis and review of development plans. You are adept at coordinating with clients, discipline leads, technical and support staff, subconsultants, and stakeholders. You will produce technical work and written products that are clear and concise and will serve as a subject matter expert.


Consistently demonstrate your solid writing skills, attentive listening skills, and participate in and/or lead client meetings, present at or provide support at community workshops and public hearings by effectively presenting complex technical information clearly and concisely.


Lead and support business and client development efforts including preparing proposals, identifying opportunities, developing capture strategies, and engaging with proposal/interview teams. These efforts will include having the responsibility for preparing scopes of work and budgets.


Provide mentorship and support for junior staff, including reviewing their work for accuracy and clarity and providing constructive feedback and career development guidance while working on projects together.

You will thrive in a fast-paced, challenging environment and be able to manage multiple responsibilities and deadlines, while working on a team or independently. You will be committed to treating people respectfully and equitably.


ESA has established multiple pay ranges tailored to the economic factors in the geographies in which ESA staff reside. For this position, the range is $114,296-$171,144 annually based on our anticipated hiring locations as noted in the above job details. Actual compensation is determined by several factors including but not limited to an individual’s related experience, education, skills, and the city in which the applicant lives.


What ESA Will Do for You


Joining ESA means becoming part of a close-knit team of environmental professionals who contribute to outstanding projects, improve environmental stewardship, and advance a more sustainable and resilient future for our communities and wild places.


At ESA, we provide benefits such as medical, dental, and vision insurance (paid at 70% for you AND your family), annual allocations of company shares through our ESOP, a 401(k) plan with company match, and paid vacation, sick leave, and holidays, to name a few.


We also provide specific programs whether you want to further your technical expertise, sharpen your business acumen, or help lead the next generation of employee-owners. We want to support you in reaching your career goals through tuition reimbursement, professional development bonuses, and attendance at conferences.


In accordance with ESA’s duty and responsibility to provide and maintain a safe workplace that is free of known hazards and to minimize exposure to potential hazards, any employee who works from an ESA office or conducts any other in-person ESA work-related activity is required to submit their proof of vaccination status or have received an approved exemption and accommodation.


ESA is an Equal Opportunity Employer, committed to a diverse and inclusive work environment. (EOE M/V/F/D)