Director Permanent Position Portland, Oregon

THE ORGANIZATION

Kearns & West is a leader in the collaborative communications field, providing services in public involvement, stakeholder facilitation, community outreach, and mediation, for the public and private sector. Founded in 1984, the small, woman-owned business has offices in Portland, Riverside, San Diego, Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles, 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, major public facilities and infrastructure, natural resources, energy, water, and marine resources. At the core of all of our projects is finding solutions to advance essential policies and programs.

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. Compensation and benefits at Kearns & West are also highly competitive with firms in our field.

THE POSITION

Kearns & West seeks Director in our Portland, Oregon office. This position involves a wide range of responsibilities and roles, including: all aspects of planning and executing a full range of stakeholder-focused meetings, workshop, and other forums; applying a diverse set of process skills including facilitation and mediation; designing and conducting effective public involvement; strategic planning; development of project proposals and identification of new business opportunities; project and client management; and contract administration.

Candidates from a variety of backgrounds, including dispute resolution, public policy, and communications will be considered. An interest in collaborative problem-solving and effective communications is essential. This position requires a non-partisan, neutral approach to policy issues and solutions consistent with K&W’s principles of impartiality.

In particular, the position offers the right candidate the opportunity to build or advance a career in dispute resolution, including planning and executing stakeholder input processes; supporting clients in building their negotiation capabilities; assessing complex issues; engaging diverse communities and constituencies in public policy processes; developing collaboration information gathering and planning processes;

developing consensus-backed plans, policies and settlements; and translating consensus into agreements, implementation and adaptive management programs. The position provides an opportunity to work on projects throughout the Pacific Northwest as well as the possibility of involvement in state-wide and national projects.

THE IDEAL CANDIDATE

The ideal candidate will be someone with experience in the policy arena and demonstrated interest in a range of collaborative engagement and conflict resolution skills. This candidate will also have a track record of successful client development and strategic decision making. The ideal candidate will be enthusiastic in joining the K&W team as a senior member.

In addition, the ideal candidate will be:

  • Committed to good public policy, integrity and positive solutions
  • Able to both lead and contribute to teams and groups
  • Organized and prepared to contribute to broader team organization
  • Comfortable planning and facilitating stakeholder meetings, workshops, and other forums of diverse sizes, as well as public meetings that involve a high level of conflict
  • Committed to business development and growing Kearns & West’s collaboration practice sector and/or a pre-existing client base
  • Willing to mentor and support other team members in their professional development
  • Adaptable and flexible
  • An effective and reliable communicator and skilled writer
  • 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
  • Comfortable operating in a small (6-8 person) office environment and collaborating virtually with inter-office teams (based in San Francisco/Los Angeles/Sacramento/Davis/Atlanta/Washington, DC).

QUALIFICATIONS

This position requires a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree. An advanced degree or education and/or policy-level experience in government or the private sector is preferred.

Successful candidates will have 8-12 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 significant plus.

Applicant must demonstrate strong computer skills with proficiency in Microsoft Office and database management.

COMPENSATION

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.

HOW TO APPLY

Please apply immediately by submitting cover letter and resume to personnel@kearnswest.com with the subject “Portland Director Opening.” Resumes will be accepted until the position is filled.