Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) provides essential utility services to a rapidly growing and increasingly complex city and region. With more people living in Seattle than ever before, we face a range of new challenges, requirements and responsibilities. This is an exciting time for us, as we embrace the challenge of balancing environmental enhancement, service excellence and compliance with affordability. We are exploring and sharing approaches to meeting new and future demands.
SPU strives to be a Community Centered Utility working to make Seattle the best place to live for everyone. 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. We also provide drinking water for 1.4 million regional customers in Seattle and other municipalities. Our customers depend on us to deliver high quality, reliable utility services and to achieve the highest benefits possible for every investment we make. With those goals in mind, we focus on the following in all we do:
- Achieve Excellence in Core Service Delivery
- Increase Affordability and Accountability
- Improve Investment Value
- Enhance Public Health and Environment
- Ensure Equity and Inclusion
- Expand our Impact through Strong Partnerships
We have an exciting opportunity for an experienced leader to join our team as the Solid Waste Line of Business (SWLOB) Deputy Director. Reporting to the General Manager/Chief Executive Officer (GM/CEO), the SWLOB Deputy Director will have demonstrated vision and a track record for delivering exceptional outcomes within a large utility with multiple lines of business. The SWLOB Deputy Director ensures the work of the Solid Waste Line of Business is aligned with Seattle Public Utilities Strategic Business Plan
, is appropriately resourced, represents the best value for customers and identifies opportunities to develop the Solid Waste Line of Business capacity and capabilities.
The SWLOB Deputy Director is accountable for:
- Providing efficient and forward-looking garbage, recycling, and organics collection and processing for Seattle's residential, multi-family, and commercial solid waste customers.
- Operating of Seattle's solid waste transfer stations and management of third-party contracts for waste collection, processing and disposal.
- Educating customers to encourage composting of yard waste and organics, recycling and waste minimization.
- Promoting City livability and active oversight of the City's Clean City program which reduces public blight including illegal dumping, litter, graffiti, community cleanup, rat abatement, abandoned vehicles services, and several pilot programs to include: Unauthorized Homeless Encampment (UHE) Trash Cleanup, Recreational Vehicle (RV) Remediation, Sharps Collection, and Litter Abatement.
- Influencing the solid waste industry, manufacturers and other key sectors toward sustainable waste management and waste minimization.
This SWLOB Deputy Director serves as a member of SPU's Executive Team contributing to and evaluating ideas and initiatives designed to advance SPU's mission and the interests of the utility's rate payers. This position is also responsible for leading the Solid Waste Line of Business in a manner that is consistent with corporate policies, methods, standards and financial plans by developing and executing strategies and plans (short term and long term) affecting the integrity and resiliency of the Solid Waste Line of Business. The Deputy Director develops, monitors, and updates long-range plans that assist SPU in forecasting; budgeting; identifying realistic and accurate resource requirements; and workload planning.
- Efficient and forward-looking operation of Seattle's solid waste transfer stations and management of third-party contracts ensuring reliable waste collection, processing and disposal that meets, or exceeds, SPU service levels and regulatory requirements.
- Ensures that the operation of all City solid waste facilities are in compliance with applicable Federal, State, local regulations and standards. Protects the public and the environment from potential harm from closed landfills and the disposal of hazardous materials.
- Achievement of Seattle's objective to recycle 70% of all solid waste citywide by 2022 – sending less garbage to landfills, recognizing cost savings and reducing water and local pollution. Educates customers in methods to reach and maintain compliance with the City's Solid Waste reduction goals. Directs the monitoring of customer compliance, complaints and changes that affect department code enforcement.
- Comprehensive planning that identifies current and anticipated future Line of Business needs to ensure system resiliency to meet operational service levels, regulatory compliance, population growth, development needs and environmental impacts.
- Developing a "One Team" culture that reflects superb team work where leaders and staff effectively seek out and apply diversity of knowledge and skills.
- Financial knowledge and performance for the Line of Business. Management to the Line of Business Capital Improvement Program, Operation budget and rate targets. Allocates Line of Business resources and assures utilization to achieve the best value for SPU customers.
- Championing and facilitating a safe and inclusive workplace that supports employee engagement, innovation and productivity.
- Maintaining and enhancing positive relationships with elected officials, customers, and stakeholders and is responsive to complaints, commendation, and inquiries. Proactively communicates Line of Business initiatives, operations and projects to SPU partners, stakeholders, employees and customers.
- Directing the Continuity of Operations (COOP) planning to ensure adequate Line of Business services under a broad range of circumstances including all-hazard emergencies as well as natural, human induced and technological threats and national security emergencies.
- Guaranteeing the Department's responsiveness to identified customer values, service equity and regulatory compliance in the planning and management of the delivery of Solid Waste Line of Business services. Actively ensures that all communities and customer groups have equitable access, service delivery and ability to use Line of Business services.
- Participating as a member of SPU's executive team, collaborating on the utility's planning, policies, procedures, conformance, compliance and culture building.
- Managing and empowering business teams that include: Operations, Planning & Program Management, Household Hazardous Waste and Landfills, and Environmental Programs
- Directing the development and implementation of strategic goals, vision, workforce management, performance measures, strategies, policies, best practices, and initiatives;
- Providing leadership to promote an organizational culture that supports continuous improvement and embraces racial equity and social justice for employees;
- Fostering a culture of innovation and sustained change with a strong sense of how to develop and offer new products and services;
- Utilizing internal and external resources, technology, and continuous improvement techniques to report metrics, improve processes, create more capacity, and deliver greater value to customers and community.
Education: A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university in Business or Public Administration, Civil Engineering, Environmental Studies or a related field.
Experience: A minimum of six (6) years of experience in a leadership position managing solid waste contracts, operations and/or programs. A minimum of three years' experience in the management of a sizable waste collection or recycling program.
A comprehensive knowledge of current solid waste management methods and technologies, including residential and commercial refuse collection, transfer station operations, recycling operation, waste reduction, education and disposal. The understanding of safety regulations, safe work practices and safety equipment is imperative.
A demonstrated commitment to environmental stewardship, public health, regulatory compliance and service equity in the planning and delivery of utility services.
An established reputation as a strong leader who develops mutually respectful relationships, achieves consensus among competing interests and fosters a collaborative approach to problem solving.
Education/Experience Equivalency: Combinations of appropriate education, training, certification and experience will be evaluated on an individual basis for comparability to the minimum education and experience requirements.
Job offers are contingent on review of criminal history as well as verification of information provided by the applicant as part of the application process.
Ideal Candidate: A credible, unifying people leader who is deeply committed to the success of the utility, is a strategic big-picture thinker and will be able to deliver the level of services that the City of Seattle residents' value.
The successful candidate will have the proven ability to:
- Understand and embrace continuous improvement concepts with a focus on practical application
- Provide strategic leadership and behave as coach/mentor with direct reports and SPU work groups by encouraging problem solving and adherence to the Utility's business plan to achieve results that customer's value
- Be results oriented and use data and metrics to drive decision making
- Exercise good judgment, strong analytical and strategic thinking skills consistently and exhibit a calm demeanor during crisis or stressful situations
- Present information about SPU and communicate through quality written correspondence and formal reports as well as comfort representing the Utility with print and TV media.
Seattle Public Utilities has three lines of business, which include: drinking water, drainage and wastewater, and solid waste. "Our Promise" is to provide efficient and forward-looking utility services that keep Seattle the best place to live.
In 1989 Seattle became one of the first cities in the country to start a citywide recycling program. Recyclables have been prohibited from Seattle's garbage since 2004. Seattle businesses and residents have been composting their food scraps for nearly 10 years. Today, Seattle is a national recycling leader, and diverts more than 400,000 tons of food, yard waste, paper, plastic, glass, cardboard and aluminum from the landfill every year through recycling and composting. Seattle recycles about 60% of its municipal solid waste (MSW) and aims to recycle 70%..
The work of the Solid Waste Line of Business (SWLOB) includes planning and programming, regulatory compliance, provision of solid waste, organics collection and recycling services for residential, multi-family and commercial customers and the operation and maintenance of two transfer stations.
The Solid Waste Line of Business annual revenues in 2017 exceeded $200M and currently serve over 160,000 residential and 8,000 commercial customers. The 2018 Solid Waste Line of Business operations, maintenance, and capital budgets totals $214M, which includes costs associated with collection services provided by third-party vendors. Approximately two-thirds of the staff of over 150 professionals, technicians and field workers are represented by labor unions.
Seattle is known as a progressive leader in technology, innovation, and the environment. As an employer, the City of Seattle is a leading local government in environmental stewardship, green building and social justice, making our City what it is today and shaping our future. Our employees play an important role in making this possible.
To be considered, please submit your resume and cover letter indicating your interest and current salary information through the City of Seattle's Career Center. This position is open until filled and applications will be reviewed on an on-going basis. Application materials should reflect size and scope of management experience including staffs managed, operating and capital budgets administered, programs directed, and significant leadership accomplishments.
Learn more about Seattle Public Utilities at our web page www.seattle.gov/util/.