Washington Environmental Council: Puget Sound Policy Manager

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Washington Environmental Council: Puget Sound Policy Manager

Job Title:  Puget Sound Policy Manager

Position summary: The Puget Sound Policy Manager is part of Washington Environmental Council’s Puget Sound Program and is responsible for implementing the state, federal, and local policy agenda to protect and recover Puget Sound and the Salish Sea. The vibrant and enthusiastic Puget Sound Program team works toward clean water and healthy habitat that support iconic species like salmon and orcas and the communities that rely on Puget Sound economically and culturally. Our work builds grassroots and legislative support for a healthy Puget Sound, connects communities across the Sound on recovery efforts, advocates for better policy and enforcement, and demands increased financial investments where needed. The Puget Sound Policy Manager will develop, refine, and implement creative solutions to advance Puget Sound recovery, from incentive-based approaches to regulatory processes that protect clean water and healthy habitat. The full-time position is based in Seattle, WA, and reports to the Puget Sound Program Director.


Washington Environmental Council (WEC) is a nonprofit, statewide advocacy organization that drives positive change to solve our state's most pressing environmental challenges. For 50 years, we have been at the forefront of environmental protection in the state, securing laws and policies that safeguard the health of our families and our environment. From bedrock laws like the State Environmental Policy Act, to free electronic waste recycling, to finding solutions that reduce our climate emissions and build our clean energy economy, WEC ensures a healthy future for our state so it remains a great place to live and work. WEC works closely with our partner organization Washington Conservation Voters, the statewide political voice for the environment. By effectively combining the policy know-how of WEC with the political savvy of WCV, we have reshaped how environmental protection is achieved in Washington state. Combined, we have a staff of 30 and work in a LEED-certified building in downtown Seattle with a view of Elliott Bay. We offer competitive salaries, great benefits, and the opportunity for you to make a difference.


The Puget Sound Policy Manager refines and implements our state, local, and federal policy agenda to protect and restore Puget Sound. The Policy Manager builds and maintains strategic relationships with policymakers and leaders, including tribes; federal, state, and local governments; elected officials; businesses; other nonprofit organizations; and funders. The position will seek creative and strategic opportunities to build momentum into and beyond the 2020 timeline for Puget Sound recovery.

  • Strengthen stormwater policies and regulations to accelerate adoption of green stormwater infrastructure using a range of tools from incentives to regulatory based.
  • Engage at the state and local level to enact new policies and update existing regulations to save intact habitat and restore degraded habitat, including both marine waters and the rivers and streams that feed Puget Sound and the Salish Sea.
  • Analyze root causes of poor Puget Sound health and identify creative solutions to achieve short-term gains and build toward long-term recovery in the face of climate change and a growing population.




Specific Duties Include:

  • Evaluate how to better advance racial equity in Puget Sound advocacy and implement recommendations.
  • Develop authentic relationships with tribes and communities of color to better understand the cultural significance of Puget Sound, the Salish Sea, and the lands and waters that surround them, and where appropriate work together to protect these values.
  • Oversee the evolution of the recently released Nature’s Scorecard (www.naturesscorecard.com), completed in collaboration with our partner organization as an accountability measure to increase compliance with stormwater municipal permit requirements under the Clean Water Act.
  • Advocate for a stronger 2018 municipal stormwater permit representing the environmental community in administrative processes through the Department of Ecology.
  • Engage with partner organizations to modernize and broaden stormwater and habitat messaging.
  • Support Puget Sound team members, other WEC programs, communications staff, field team, and WCV to identify synergistic opportunities to advance Puget Sound recovery at the state, local, and federal levels.
  • Assist in grant writing and reports to funders, including developing measurable outcomes.
  • Communicate Puget Sound team efforts and advocacy positions to a range of audiences, including newsletters to members, media, comment letters to government officials, and multi-media tools that reach new audiences in creative ways.
  • Track threats and opportunities to improve Puget Sound health through the Shoreline Management Act, Growth Management Act, State Environmental Policy Act, Model Toxics Control Act, and other state-level policy that WEC helped develop and now defends.


Skills Required:

  • Commitment to environmental protection and principles of racial, social, and economic justice
  • Demonstrated success in critical thinking and policy development
  • Ability to evaluate highly complex policy and technical issues to find the root causes of problems or policy triggers to effectively advocate for positive change
  • Communicate effectively, both in writing and verbally, with audiences whose interests range from highly nuanced policy details to a shared, high-level vision for a thriving Puget Sound future
  • Flexible, creative, and able to thrive in a dynamic non-profit environment that requires prioritizing across multiple topics and simultaneous demands
  • Work effectively independently, as a critical member of the Puget Sound team, and in coalitions with partner organizations
  • Bachelor’s degree, and at least two years of experience in science, law, policy, finance, or a related field that builds analytical skills


Desirable Skills:

  • Understanding of Puget Sound recovery needs and agency-led processes implemented at the state, local, and national levels
  • Puget Sound policy experience
  • Familiarity with state and federal laws such as the Shoreline Management Act, Shoreline Master Programs, Growth Management Act, State Environmental Policy Act, Model Toxics Control Act, Clean Water Act, and Endangered Species Act
  • Experience with environmental economics and financial marketplaces, including creative financing for Puget Sound protection and recovery elements
  • Experience in leadership roles, negotiation, and convening groups to seek shared solutions
  • Advanced degree in science, law, policy, finance, or a related field that builds analytical skills


Compensation and Benefits:

This is a full-time, exempt position with a salary range of $52,000 to $58,000 depending on experience. We also offer a generous benefits package including medical and dental insurance, 401k plan and organizational match of up to 3% of your annual salary, a flexible spending account, paid vacation and sick leave, ten paid holidays per year, an unlimited ORCA transit pass, and if you work for seven consecutive years you are eligible for a two-month paid sabbatical. We welcome new and diverse people to a great team who together shape environmental protection in Washington.

To Apply

Please submit a cover letter, resume, and brief writing sample to https://wecprotects.org/jobs/puget-sound-policy-manager/.  The writing sample, no more than 500 words, should describe a complex element of Puget Sound recovery to a general-knowledge audience. No phone calls or mailed applications please. Position open until filled, with the first review of applicants on January 5, 2018.

Washington Environmental Council is an equal opportunity employer committed to dismantling structural racism and creating a welcoming work environment. WEC does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, creed, gender, religion, marital status, veteran’s status, national origin, disability, or sexual orientation. People of color, people with disabilities, and people of all gender identities are encouraged to apply.


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