Salary: $78,120.00 – $105,096.00 Annually
Location: Thurston County – Olympia, WA
Job Type: Full Time – Permanent
Closing Date: 8/31/2023 12:00 AM Pacific

The Department is seeking a highly motivated person to: Help prevent the introduction of, and early detection monitoring of, marine and freshwater Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) transported into or spread within the state through commercial vessel ballast water, biofouling, and other pathways. Lead the Ballast Water & Biofouling Section of the AIS Unit and serve as the Department expert and strategic advisor to the AIS Unit Manager on statewide commercial vessel ballast water, biofouling, and other AIS pathway planning, policies, and state and federal laws.

This is an opportunity to coordinate and facilitate resolution on highly complex inter-program, interagency, tribal, stakeholder, regional and national commercial vessel ballast water, biofouling, and other AIS pathway issues.

In this dynamic role, you will implement activities to support a broad range of aquatic environmental, economic, and human cultural and health resource protections.

With your experience, you will lead the investigation of violations for ballast water management.

You are excited to protect human safety, minimizing adverse environmental impacts, and minimizing adverse economic impacts to owners of affected water bodies or property.


Our Ballast Water & Biofouling Section Lead will,

  • Serve as the Department’s senior planning and policy expert on commercial vessel ballast water, biofouling, and other AIS pathway management.
  • Represent the Department in coordinating the development and review of federal and state commercial vessel ballast water, biofouling, and other AIS pathway legislation, laws and rules with Congress, Governor’s Office, Legislature, the Office of the Attorney General, tribes and other states. 
  • Lead the adoption and implementation by rule of standards and requirements governing the release of biofouling on vessels arriving or moored at a Washington port under RCW 77.120.140 in consideration of the Biofouling Management Six-Year Strategic Plan (2017), federal Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA), and Pacific region state partners.
  • Lead resource risk assessment, planning, organizing, and maintaining statewide strategies for the prevention and early detection monitoring of AIS by commercial vessel pathways.
  • Coordination and consultation with the Washington Department of Ecology on federalism consultation processes, national rulemaking processes, and implementation of VIDA.
  • Write and manage grants and contracts to enhance or maintain current funding levels for AIS accounts.
  • Track budget expenditures and incomes relative to allotments.
  • Supervise and mentor technical and professional level staff to support an effective, motivated team.
  • Set goals and objectives, develops strategies to implement, and develops performance measurements and standards for the purpose of ensuring individual and program performance objectives are met.
  • Manage personnel issues relating to staff conflicts, absenteeism, performance issues, etc. in a positive manner for the purpose of ensuring the efficient and effective functioning of the work unit.


  • Work Setting, including hazards:
    1. Work is done primarily in an office environment with a PC, but also has periods of field and travel activity in potentially hazardous industrial port environments aboard merchant vessels conducting cargo operations.
    2. Must be able to negotiate water in emergency situations.
  • Schedule:
    1. Typically, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Monday – Friday, with exceptions due to peak seasonal work requirements and emergent issues can increase this on a periodic basis.
  • Travel Requirements:
    1. Up to 20% statewide and out of state travel with occasional overnight stays.
  • Tools and Equipment:
    1. Computers, electronic and non-electronic biological and environmental sampling devices, motor vehicles.
  • Customer Interactions:
    1. Frequent contact with general public, affected or regulated industries, federal and state agency staff. Some contact with public may involve confrontational situations with non-cooperative people.
    2. Some work will be to provide prevention assistance during Enforcement regulatory actions that may result in citations for non-compliance.


A Bachelor’s degree or above with major emphasis in land use, urban, regional, environmental, or natural resource planning, landscape architecture, geography, land use or environmental law, public administration with an environmental emphasis, maritime operations, or closely related field. 


Seven (7) years of professional experience relating to the above areas, with at least one year in either part A or part B (experience can be gained concurrently): 

  1. Shipping regulatory and management operations; vessel operations; vessel and port safety requirements; vessel ballast water management system operations, testing and quality control requirements used for regulatory purposes; or other related commercial vessel inspection duties.
  2. Marine and freshwater aquatic invasive species risks to state, especially ballast water and biofouling pathways of introduction and their management techniques; working effectively with diverse vessel managers, agents, officers and crew; and field research, sampling, monitoring and testing techniques; or other related natural resources duties. 

Please Note:

A Master’s degree will substitute for 2 years of professional experience

A PhD will substitute for 3 years of professional experience.


  • Valid driver’s license.


Job knowledge to perform the essential activities of this position including:

  • Planning principles, techniques, current trends, environmental laws, policies, and program concerning all phases of state resource development.
  • Governmental administrative structure at local and state levels.
  • Environmental, social, and other problems affecting development of local and state environmental resource programs.
  • Methods and objectives of urban and natural resources planning.
  • Principles of staff supervision.
  • Principles and procedures of invasive species management and assessment of risks to state environmental, economic and human resources.
  • Develop, implement, and manage statewide biological studies and management actions.
  • Budget and contract management.

Other skills and abilities for full performance of essential functions including strong to excellent skills and attitudes in the following areas:

  • Accept responsibility for major program activities, meet schedules, and produce measurable results.
  • Interpret and apply agency policy.
  • Develop long-range work plans, think conceptually, observe and interpret trends, analyze data, identify key relationships, draw logical conclusions. 
  • Maintain effective working relationships with governmental officials, tribes, NGOs, and affected industries.
  • Address large groups and write effectively and persuasively.
  • Supervise staff and manage major program activities to achieve the desired outcomes.


  • Oral and written communications
  • Interpersonal relationships based on integrity and honesty
  • Creativity and innovation both in working independently and in team building
  • Public service and partnership building motivation
  • Performance management with accountability and strategic planning.

Scientific/Technical skills:

  • Use basic software including Access, Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Routine descriptive and inferential statistics
  • Accurately measure and record environmental and biological data
  • Accurately analyze and summarize research findings

To Apply

In order to successfully apply for this position, you MUST complete your profile at and attach the following to your profile before completing the online application:

  • A cover letter describing how you meet the qualifications of this position (Generic cover letter will not be accepted).
  • A current resume. 
  • Three professional references. 

For more information and to apply:

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