Director Opportunity in Northern California Region


The Director will support and lead collaborative problem solving, dispute resolution, and public outreach and engagement processes involving stakeholders from state and federal agencies, tribal communities, advocacy organizations, industry, and local government in California and across the United States. It is expected that this position will support multiple projects involving issues touching on water resources management and ecosystem protection and enhancement.

The position involves a wide range of responsibilities and roles including: all aspects of planning and executing stakeholder and public meetings or other forums, facilitated problem solving and decision making, citizen engagement, project and client management, strategic planning, development of project proposals and identification of new business opportunities, and contract administration. Candidates from a variety of backgrounds, including dispute resolution, public policy, and communications will be considered. Demonstrated interest in collaborative problem-solving and related communication skills is essential.


We’re looking for someone who is:

  • Organized and prepared to contribute to our team organization
  • Comfortable planning and facilitating meetings, workshops, and other forums of diverse sizes, including public meetings that may involve significant emotion and conflict
  • Committed to business development and growing Kearns & West’s Collaborative Solutions
  • Adaptable and flexible
  • Able to maintain a non-partisan, neutral perspective on the substance of issues and potential solutions
  • An effective verbal communicator
  • Able to create accurate and clear written products such as meeting summaries within deadlines
  • Able to reliably set priorities, manage multiple tasks, and meet project deadlines
  • Able to balance work on multiple projects for different clients
  • Successful at balancing working as part of a team with working independently
  • Comfortable working in diverse physical and virtual environments and collaborating with colleagues located around the United States as well as in the same area


Minimum Education: Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree. Advanced degree or education a plus but will not change job duties.

Preferred Experience: Successful candidates will have at least six (6) years of experience with stakeholder engagement, meeting facilitation, conflict management and resolution, local and regional government, public policy, and/or community relations. Demonstrated success in building client relationships and generating business is desired. Fluency in Spanish is a plus.

Required Skills: Applicants are expected to demonstrate strong overall computer skills including proficiency in office software suites (word processing, presentation software, spreadsheets), communication and collaboration tools (Slack, MS Teams, Zoom, are Mural are examples), and project management tools. Additional computer skills, such as graphic design or data visualization software competency, are desirable.


The salary for this position is open and will be dependent upon the qualifications and experience of the selected candidate. In addition, benefits are provided which include: profit-sharing; 401K; bonuses; health, dental and disability insurance; vacation and holidays; and more.


Please apply immediately by submitting cover letter and resume to with the subject “Nor Cal Director Opening.” Resumes will be accepted until the position is filled.


Kearns & West is seeking to hire a Director for its team delivering Collaborative Solutions services from the Davis/Sacramento-San Francisco region. Our team members work extensively – but not exclusively – on public policy decision making, problem solving, conflict resolution, and citizen engagement across a broad spectrum of issues. We are recognized around the United States as a leader in consistently delivering high quality and innovative services from a non-partisan perspective. Our physical offices are located in Sacramento/Davis, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, CA, Portland, OR, Atlanta, GA, and Washington DC.

Our clients are primarily local, state, and government agencies and public sector companies. We deliver customized conflict and needs assessments, public outreach and engagement, process and meeting design and facilitation, conflict resolution/mediation, and strategic planning and communications services. We employ diverse tools, methods, and techniques to promote constructive stakeholder relationships, collaborations, and strategic partnerships and sustainable solutions.

Kearns & West is a small, women-owned business founded in 1984. We offer a collaborative, collegial work environment and the chance to work on significant public policy projects. We offer professional development and a partnership track as team members advance in their careers. We are committed to doing business in ways that are consistent with explicit principles and values.