Director – Public Involvement, Stakeholder Facilitation and Communications Focus, Southern California

Permanent Position or Part-Time Contract Opportunity
Southern California – Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County, or Inland Empire

THE ORGANIZATION
Kearns & West is a leader in the collaborative communications field, providing services in public involvement, stakeholder facilitation, community outreach, and mediation, primarily for government agencies. Founded in 1984, the small, woman-owned business has offices in San Diego, Los Angeles, Riverside, and Costa Mesa in Southern California and elsewhere including Sacramento, San Francisco, Portland, Denver, and Washington, DC.

Focusing on positive, mutually beneficial results has allowed Kearns & West to maintain long-term relationships with the people and organizations they assist. The firm’s high-stakes projects include work at local, state, and national levels and cover a variety of sectors including land use and community planning, transportation, energy, water, major public facilities and infrastructure, and natural resources. At the core of all of our projects is finding solutions to advance essential policies and programs.

Kearns & West’s Southern California team is conducting stakeholder and community engagement for cities, water districts, regional agencies, the State of California, and some federal agencies. Most of our projects intersect with climate resiliency, equity, health, and involve formulating participatory processes where community members and stakeholders can share knowledge and inform the development of multi-benefit solutions. We are experts in multi-pronged in-person and virtual engagement methods. We are also specialists in inclusive and equitable engagement methods and are helping our government clients to meaningfully involve communities that are particularly vulnerable and/or marginalized due to racism and socioeconomic disparities.

Kearns & West is the ideal match for professionals seeking meaningful work, opportunities for growth, and colleagues that are smart, capable and supportive. Once on board, our employees stay for the long term. The entrepreneurial culture at Kearns & West values employee initiatives in practice innovation and business development – principal tracks are open to all team members. Compensation and benefits at Kearns & West are also highly competitive with firms in our field.

THE POSITION
The Director will manage and support communications, outreach and public engagement on a wide variety of projects for local and regional government across Southern California. Opportunities for involvement outside of the Southern California region also exist. A background in local government, communications and/or planning is desirable.

The position involves a wide range of responsibilities and roles including: interaction with diverse stakeholders, client management and coordination, facilitation, all aspects of planning and executing stakeholder and public meetings or other forums, online and social media, project research, strategic planning, communications and outreach support, development of project proposals including budgets, business development, and contract administration.

The position involves a wide range of responsibilities and roles including interaction with diverse stakeholders, client management and coordination, facilitation, all aspects of planning and executing stakeholder and public meetings or other forums, online and social media, project research, strategic planning, communications and outreach support, development of project proposals including budgets, business development, and contract administration. Candidates from a variety of backgrounds, including dispute resolution, public policy and communications will be considered. Interest in collaborative problem-solving and communications is essential.

QUALIFICATIONS
Successful candidates will have 4-8 years of experience with public and stakeholder engagement, conflict management and resolution, transportation and infrastructure issues, environment, community and regional planning, local and regional government, public policy, and community relations. A Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree is required; Advanced degree or education a plus, but will not change job duties. Fluency in Spanish is a plus. Completion of the International Association of Public Participation certification program or similar program is also a plus, but not required.

We’re looking for someone who is:

  • An effective and reliable communicator
  • Comfortable leading and facilitating meetings
  • Organized and prepared to contribute to our team organization
  • Adaptable and flexible
  • Self-motivated and comfortable working independently and as a team member
  • Comfortable with taking direction yet able to take the initiative
  • Able to reliably set priorities, manage multiple tasks, and meet project deadlines
  • Able to work and balance multiple projects for multiple clients
  • Successful at balancing working as part of a team with working independently, and
  • Comfortable working in a small office environment and collaborating virtually with inter-office teams
  • Adept at researching and understanding the regulatory, policy, environmental and community contexts of our projects.

COMPENSATION
Compensation will depend on the qualifications and experience of the selected candidate.

HOW TO APPLY
Please apply immediately by submitting cover letter and resume to personnel@kearnswest.com with the subject “Southern California Director.” Importantly, please specify your interest in a permanent position and/or freelance opportunity. We ask that you do not call or email staff directly. Resumes will be accepted until the position is filled.

Project Coordinator, Public Involvement Focus, Southern California

Permanent Position or Part-Time Contract Opportunity
Southern California – Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County, or Inland Empire

THE ORGANIZATION
Kearns & West is a leader in the collaborative communications field, providing services in public involvement, stakeholder facilitation, community outreach, and mediation, primarily for government agencies. Founded in 1984, the small, woman-owned business has offices in San Diego, Los Angeles, Riverside, and Costa Mesa in Southern California and elsewhere including Sacramento, San Francisco, Portland, Denver, and Washington, DC.

Focusing on positive, mutually beneficial results has allowed Kearns & West to maintain long-term relationships with the people and organizations they assist. The firm’s high-stakes projects include work at local, state, and national levels and cover a variety of sectors including land use and community planning, transportation, energy, water, major public facilities and infrastructure, and natural resources. At the core of all of our projects is finding solutions to advance essential policies and programs.

Kearns & West’s Southern California team is conducting stakeholder and community engagement for cities, water districts, regional agencies, the State of California, some federal agencies. Most of our projects intersect with climate resiliency, equity, health, and involve formulating participatory processes where community members and stakeholders can share knowledge and inform the development of multi-benefit solutions. We are experts in multi-pronged in-person and virtual engagement methods. We are also specialists in inclusive and equitable engagement methods and are helping our government clients to meaningfully involve communities that are particularly vulnerable and/or marginalized due to racism and socioeconomic disparities.

Kearns & West is the ideal match for professionals seeking meaningful work, opportunities for growth, and colleagues that are smart, capable and supportive. Once on board, our employees stay for the long term. The entrepreneurial culture at Kearns & West values employee initiatives in practice innovation and business development – principal tracks are open to all team members. Compensation and benefits at Kearns & West are also highly competitive with firms in our field.

THE POSITION
Kearns & West seeks a Project Coordinator in our San Diego or Orange County offices. The position provides an opportunity to work on projects throughout greater Southern California (particularly San Diego, Orange, Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura counties), as well as the possibility of involvement in state-wide and national projects. As a Kearns & West team member, the successful candidate will:

  • Assist with facilitating and documenting stakeholder engagement and community meetings, including notetaking, report preparation, and database management
  • Lead or support coordination of meeting logistics
  • Support development of engagement strategy through research, direct interaction with stakeholders, and local knowledge
  • Prepare basic informational materials for stakeholders and the public
  • Conduct administrative duties
  • Prepare advertisement placements and media releases
  • Proofread reports and other documents
  • Help to maintain and grow strong relationships with clients and project partners
  • And more…

Project Coordinator level positions are also encouraged to assist in identifying new opportunities for practice and personal growth.

QUALIFICATIONS
The successful candidate will have a master’s or bachelor’s degree and a background/interest in community/regional planning, transportation, natural resource management, renewable energy and energy transmission, environmental/public policy issues, air quality, public involvement, collaboration and mediation. One to two years of experience is preferred. Fluency in Spanish is highly desirable but not required.

We are looking for a self-starter who can work well both as part of a team and independently. Ability to successfully manage multiple project assignments simultaneously is a must. Some travel is required. This position requires initiative, excellent organizational skills and attention to detail, strong written and oral communication skills, and the ability to work in a fast-paced, deadline-oriented environment. Applicant must demonstrate strong computer skills with proficiency in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. Interest in graphic design/layout and proficiency with Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and/or InDesign are desirable, but not required.

COMPENSATION
Compensation will depend on the qualifications and experience of the selected candidate.

HOW TO APPLY
Please apply immediately by submitting cover letter and resume to personnel@kearnswest.com with the subject “Southern California Project Coordinator.” We ask that you do not call or email staff directly. Resumes will be accepted until the position is filled..

Office Manager, San Francisco, CA

THE ORGANIZATION
Kearns & West’s San Francisco office seeks an Office Manager for immediate hire. Kearns & West is a national collaborative problem solving, dispute resolution, stakeholder engagement, and strategic communications firm with offices in, Austin, TX, Charleston SC, Costa Mesa, CA, Denver, CO, Los Angeles, CA, Portland, OR, Sacramento/Davis, CA, Riverside, CA, San Diego, CA, San Francisco, CA, and Washington DC. Kearns & West’s collaboration programs are designed to take a diverse range of issues, opinions, goals, and interests and organize them into clear, productive processes that lead to successful conclusions. The Kearns & West approach encompasses assessment, outreach, engagement and collaboration, process and meeting design, facilitation, environmental dispute resolution, and development of communications tailored to each project’s unique process. We are in need of office management support.

THE POSITION
Small consulting office seeks energetic office manager to join our San Francisco office. We are looking for someone who is self-motivated and has great initiative, can accomplish tasks quickly, and can successfully balance working as part of a team with working well independently. Successful applicants will also have strong written and oral communication skills. Requires high quality attention to detail, initiative, and excellent organizational skills. Areas of responsibility include general executive and staff support, agenda creation, digital filing/organization, action list tracking, board and legal coordination and record keeping, maintaining office operations; managing staffing schedules; providing administrative/financial support, assisting with writing and proofreading materials and finding and developing visuals/graphics; assisting with meeting planning and note-taking; providing project support to office staff; as well as tasks such as ordering supplies, and upkeep of office equipment.

QUALIFICATIONS
Strong candidates will ideally have two to three years of Executive support or Office Management experience.

REQUIRED SKILLS:

  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, deadline-oriented environment
  • Ability to manage multiple tasks simultaneously is a must
  • Ability to be flexible and resourceful and handle pressure/tight deadlines gracefully
  • Ability to interact and perform in a team-based environment
  • Strong writing skills
  • Exceptional organization and attention to detail
  • Strong knowledge of Microsoft Office – SharePoint, Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Charts, graphs and visuals assistance a plus
  • Experience in small business certifications management desirable
  • Experience or interest in webinar and other technology (e.g. Zoom, RingCentral, Webex, WordPress, Adobe)
  • Experience or interest in graphic design a plus
  • Experience or interest in organizational platform tools (e.g. Miro, Trello, Airtable)
  • Applicant must demonstrate strong computer skills with proficiency in Microsoft Office365. Graphic design and InDesign skills are desirable.

COMPENSATION
Compensation will depend on the qualifications and experience of the selected candidate.

HOW TO APPLY
Please e-mail a resume and cover letter to personnel@kearnswest.com with the subject “SF Office Manager.” We ask that you do not call or email staff directly. Resumes will be accepted until the position is filled.

IT Manager, Washington, DC

The Organization

Kearns & West provides a spectrum of services including facilitation; public involvement; project management; digital engagement and collaborative technology; process and meeting design, conflict resolution including mediation; outreach and engagement; collaborative decision-making; and strategic planning. We work extensively – but not exclusively – on public policy decision-making, conflict resolution, and citizen engagement across a broad spectrum of issues. Our collaborative programs are designed to identify and organize a range of issues, opinions, goals and interests into clear, productive processes that lead to successful conclusions for diverse parties and key stakeholders.

Kearns & West’s “IT Backbone” supports our organization and teams, ensuring functionality for our matrixed, small business to continue to thrive and grow. Kearns & West also has a Digital Engagement team that drives technology innovation in our services and client environments, helping groups achieve more when they are together (in person or virtually) and between meetings. As new technology pilots and needs evolve towards broader team adoption, our IT team helps deploy and manage technologies firm-wide.

Kearns & West’s mission: Organizations impacting society operate within a complex framework of needs, policies, interests, and markets. Kearns & West navigates this framework to help clients collaborate, communicate vision, and create productive connections with their stakeholders, employees and customers.

The Position

Kearns & West is seeking an IT Manager to lead our internal IT team. The K&W IT Team includes K&W Principals, leadership from our external-facing Digital Engagement team, and Project Coordinator / Office Manager support. The IT Manager will lead implementation of our firm’s “IT Backbone” – the core IT tools and services K&W leverages for our team to coordinate and deliver internal and external services (e.g., Office 365, VoIP Phones [currently Ring Central], Email Security Training [currently KnowB4], webinar platforms [zoom, webex] etc.) The IT Manager will team closely with our Digital Engagement team – as value-add technologies shift from project uses into broader firm-wide adoption and incorporation into our “backbone” of core tools.

This job isn’t: The help desk / first-responder role for “backbone” Kearns & West IT support (e.g., problem solving issues with Outlook.) We leverage an external managed service provider for that.

This job is: Managing our external service provider and teaming on visioning and leading support for strategic IT initiatives.

Responsibilities

  • Liaise with the managed IT service / Help Desk provider serving as the firm’s core point of contact
  • Manage IT vendor relationships and oversee technology-oriented subscription/license services
  • Plan and oversee strategic IT initiatives related to the rollout and continued use of security solutions, new technologies, major software upgrades, and others
  • Document and track key metrics related to firm-wide IT performance for regular briefings and check-in with various firm staff
  • Provide direct support to clients and stakeholders needing interoperability with firm technologies
  • Work with relevant staff to manage and improve firm IT security, providing direct training and implementation support to staff
  • Create and curate support materials and for firm-supported IT offerings, including detailed how-to documentation, SOPs, tool descriptions for marketing purposes, and the like
  • Perform problem management services, analyzing core causes and working with stakeholders to address the issue and prevent their recurrence
  • Serve as primary point of contact in addressing improvements to core firm technologies (for example, SharePoint modifications, website improvements, etc.)
  • Bolster firm-wide technology adeptness through knowledge documentation and regular training opportunities
  • Work with project staff and stakeholders to address complex technology issues, simplifying the issue and developing business cases or workplans for next steps
  • Support employee onboarding and offboarding related to IT, account configuration, hardware procurement, etc.

Experience

  • 4+ years of experience.
  • Demonstrated capacity to manage and oversee IT projects
  • Background in managing and communicating complex technical tasks with non-technical staff and stakeholders
  • Demonstrated interest in environmental issues, natural resource management, and/or energy is beneficial.

Skills

  • Strong knowledge of Microsoft Office – Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Skill in managing and overseeing a firm-wide SharePoint Environment
  • Conversancy in webinar and synchronous technology platforms –Zoom / Ring Central Meetings, WebEx, MS Teams
  • Ability to manage multiple tasks and projects simultaneously
  • Experience in end-to-end IT project management and oversight
  • Ability to be flexible and resourceful and handle pressure/tight deadlines gracefully
  • Ability to interact and perform in a team-based environment
  • Ability to accessibly communicate technical matter, including written communications (user guides), 1-on-1 user troubleshooting support across all levels of technology acumen, and technology trainings
  • Capacity to rapidly distill core strengths and constraints of technological platforms

WHAT WE OFFER:

Generous 401k Matching

Full benefits

Companywide bonus program

How to Apply

Please e-mail a resume and cover letter to personnel@kearnswest.com with the subject “IT Manager” We ask that you do not call or email staff directly. Resumes will be accepted until the position is filled.