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Director of Public Works for Utilities

Location:  City of Boulder, CO Download:  City of Boulder, CO - Director of Public Works for Utilities Brochure

POSTING START DATE: 06/15/11 12:00 AM
HIRING RANGE: $91,600 - $130,000 (DOQ)
SALARY: $91,600.00 - $146,500.00 Annually

WORK SCHEDULE: Full time. Generally, Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Some night meetings and weekend work required.
JOB TYPE: Full-Time
LOCATION: Park Central Building, 1739 Broadway, Boulder


Under the general direction of the Executive Director of Public Works, the Director serves as the leader of the Utilities Division and the Division's primary public representative in support of the city's water utility, wastewater utility and stormwater & flood management utility. Under the Executive Director's direction and in partnership with the staff, elected and appointed officials, and key stakeholders, the Director of Public Works for Utilities:
  • ensures that the Utilities Division fulfills its mission and implements strategies in alignment with Master Plans and the city's sustainability goals to ensure its future success,
  • leads the division through the development of annual work plans, by directing and guiding departmental projects, operations, services and programs,
  • is responsible for supervision and management of city staff and related facilities,
  • provides professional guidance and acts as a policy advisor to the Executive Director, City Manager's Office, City Council, Water Resources Advisory Board (WRAB), and other groups, and
  • is responsible for fiscal strategies, budget development, monitoring and projecting expenditures and revenues, coordinating and monitoring bond issues, developing rates and fees and the analysis of data involving the city's water, wastewater and stormwater & flood management utilities.

As a leadership position within the City's Management Team, the Director is expected to have and utilize the following competencies:

  • Managing Vision and Purpose: anticipates future trends and integrates possibilities into a clear vision; communicates that vision in an inclusive and compelling fashion that inspires others.
  • Building Effective Teams: aligns the team with a common vision; provides the necessary structure and support for the team to achieve successful results, always acknowledging the group effort.
  • Business Acumen: knows how the business works; knowledgeable in current and possible future policies, practices, trends, technology, and information affecting the utility business.
  • Strategic Agility: continuously adapts and adjusts; can create strategies for innovative solutions that best fit the organization; actively monitors possible implementation problems and evolving needs, and selects efficient and effective alternatives.
  • Political Savvy: creates consensus through good inter-personal skills and has a strong understanding of political issues, maintaining high ethical standards while also working subtly and effectively with the existing organizational structure; avoids missteps by calculating the outcome and consequences of alternative courses of action based on a realistic assessment of the situation; is fully aware of the political landscape and adjusts actions, as necessary, to avoid pitfalls.
  • Innovation Management: actively solicits and fosters the ideas of others; evaluating their practical and creative merits as solutions to current and future problems, and improving the services valued by customers and the community.
  • Interpersonal Savvy: hears and understands the unspoken as well the partially spoken thoughts, feelings, and concerns of others; relates appropriately to a wide variety of people of diverse backgrounds even in high-conflict situations.
• Managerial Courage: sustains and reinforces excellent performance of others by identifying clear and relevant measures of success; deals directly with difficult staff issues, interpersonal problems and emotionally charged situations; is unafraid to speak the truth to all levels and positions and does so with tact and skill.


The following list identifies principal duties and responsibilities of the job. It is not a definitive list and other duties may be assigned by the Executive Director of Public Works.

1. Plans, organizes, and directs all activities concerning the management of the City of Boulder's water utility, wastewater utility, stormwater & flood management utility, including associated infrastructure and facilities.
2. Oversees the employment, retention, promotion, transfer and termination of utility division personnel consistent with approved city policies, rules, regulations and contracts.
3. Represents the utilities division at various professional conferences and public meetings; makes presentations, attends and chairs meetings and acts as a spokesperson with the media when appropriate.
4. Creates a climate of acceptance for new concepts, programs and services, and a positive high-quality image of the city's utilities, highlighting quality and high standards through personal and professional contact with the community and the city's utility customers, the city's Management Team, City Manager, City Attorney, WRAB, City Council, and other city staff; federal, state and local elected and appointed officials; civic organizations; professional associations and colleagues; local and regional media.
5. Oversees the management of Utilities Division functions including but not limited to: implementing Master Plans and annual capital and operational work programs; directing and guiding work on departmental projects and programs; coordinating and managing complex projects; administering the department budget; and developing and maintaining strong collaborative partnerships with stakeholders.
6. Coordinates with the Executive Director, City Manager and City Attorney on water court cases, insurance and legal claims, legislative actions and federal and state regulatory compliance requirements, including the tracking and development of pending regulations.
7. Promotes a culture that reflects the organization's values, encourages excellent performance, and rewards high productivity and innovation.
8. Provides leadership and sets strategic direction of the Utilities Division to achieve its work program and the city's social, economic, and environmental goals.
9. Acts as the staff liaison with the City Council-appointed WRAB, established through ordinance, with responsibilities provided in the Boulder Revised Code, Section 2-3-15.
10. Ensures that the Utilities Division provides excellent customer service through solution-oriented staff response to customer needs and by responsiveness and continuous improvement of the organization, while balancing the needs of the city.
11. Promotes, develops and maintains positive working relationships with customers and key stakeholders and groups such as higher educational institutions including the University of Colorado and Naropa University, the Boulder Valley School District, the business community, neighborhood groups, and other utility purveyors and districts.
12. Other:
  • Performs related duties as required to meet the needs of the city.
  • Attends night meetings primarily for WRAB and City Council and occasionally other boards and commissions. Also attends public meetings and other events occurring outside of normal work hours including nights and occasionally weekends.
  • Takes proper safety precautions to prevent accidents, and is responsible for the safety of self, others, materials, and equipment. Uses all required safety equipment and follows all safety regulations, policies and procedures. Reports all accidents and damage to city property.
  • Responsible for knowing and complying with all city and department policies; participating in professional trainings and development; and adhering to attendance and workplace attire policies.

  • Exhibits a working knowledge of current management and leadership best practices, and the ability to apply these effectively to the Utilities Division of the Public Works Department.
  • Ability to establish and maintain an effective working relationship with the WRAB, City and State Officials, the city's senior management team and other staff, community officials, and the public. Willingness to assist and support coworkers, contribute ideas and maintain flexibility. Willingness to contribute to on-going development of a city-wide philosophy and mission. Ability to adapt to a rapidly changing environment.
  • Skill in interpersonal communication. Excellent communication skills: strong listening, verbal, written, presentation and public speaking skills. Ability to do technical writing for policies, procedures, proposals, grants and reports. Ability to effectively write correspondence, particularly when responding to issues raised by the public, elected and appointed officials. Strong mediation, facilitation, and diplomacy abilities, including the ability to work effectively with a wide range of individuals and groups in controversial situations. Well-developed customer service skills, and proven ability to support a solution-oriented staff response to customer needs.
  • Commitment to and skill in supervising people. Willingness and ability to provide positive managerial example. Willingness and ability to foster an environment in which employees are self-motivated and can exhibit high morale. Capacity to recognize and utilize talents of others. Demonstrated leadership skills - the ability to engage staff and shape the culture of an organization, including in a collective bargaining group environment.
  • Experience with strategic planning, organizational restructuring, facilities planning, financial management, information technologies, best practices in operations, public presentations, community collaboration, management of boards and advisory committees and community outreach.
  • Track record of developing and implementing strategies that are creative responses to customer service needs that balance traditional and innovative practices and technologies.
  • Demonstrated ability to coordinate and manage complex projects involving competing interests and objectives, effectively represent diverse interests, and objectively evaluate alternative approaches.
  • A strong commitment to and the ability to integrate the broader perspectives of economic, environmental, and social sustainability into a larger vision and eventual work product.
  • Broad understanding and ability to oversee administration of information technology and to effectively partner with colleagues to plan for the implementation of new technology as appropriate.
  • Ability to make realistic budget proposals, to operate within established budgetary guidelines, and to identify and analyze budgetary impact of proposed service additions, enhancements or modifications.
  • A track record of (a) solving problems and resolving issues in difficult, complex and/or contentious situations; and (b) producing high quality results relative to work plans, operations, and initiatives.
  • Ability and willingness to navigate sometimes politically challenging environments, while maintaining focus and drive.
  • Ability and willingness to work irregular hours including night and weekends to support WRAB and City Council meetings and other events.
• Excellent computer software skills including, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.


The ideal candidate will be a proven leader in the areas of water, wastewater and stormwater & flood management utilities with extensive management experience and a history of supporting positive board/ commission relationships and innovative responses to service delivery that are sustainable, while developing staff and fostering relationships with engaged stakeholders and customers.

A Bachelor's degree in Environmental Engineering, Civil Engineering or in a related field, and at least eight years of increasingly responsible experience as a senior manager in a complex public utilities organization working with regulatory agencies, consulting firms and contractors and/or equivalent education and experience. Experience in water resource management.

Valid driver's license. Have and maintain acceptable background information, including criminal conviction history, motor vehicle record and credit history.

DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS - In addition to the required minimum qualifications:
A Master's degree in Engineering, Public Administration, Business Administration or in a related field and more than eight years of increasingly responsible management experience. Registration as a licensed Professional Engineer in Colorado or ability to obtain within one year of hire. Prior experience as a department director. Experience with an active, highly engaged university community. Significant experience with community sustainability efforts involving economic, social, and environmental sustainability policy development and implementation. Experience managing staff in a union/ bargaining group environment.


WORKING CONDITIONS - Required Physical and Mental Effort, and Environmental Conditions:
Physical and Mental Effort: Sufficient clarity of speech and hearing or other communication capabilities that permits the employee to communicate effectively on the telephone and in person. Sufficient vision or other powers of observation that permits the employee to review, evaluate and prepare a variety of written documents and materials. Sufficient manual dexterity that permits the employee to operate computer equipment and other office equipment. Sufficient personal mobility and physical reflexes, which permits the employee to work in an office setting. Work may include extended periods of time viewing a computer video monitor and/ or operating a keyboard. Ability to work under stress from demanding deadlines, public contact, and changing priorities and conditions.
Work Environment: Works primarily in a clean, comfortable environment. Works in a setting subject to continuous interruptions and background noises.
Machines and equipment used include, but are not limited to the following: Frequently uses city vehicle, local transit, standard office equipment including personal computers, telephones, calculators and copy/fax machines.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of this position.

Note: The above description is illustrative only. It is not meant to be all-inclusive.

The City of Boulder is committed to hiring employees who provide excellent customer service. Our employees act with a high level of integrity, and take responsibility for their words and actions.

City of Boulder employees strive to respect and appreciate each individual's differences, and to work effectively with all people and their diverse backgrounds. We support candid and honest interactions, which respect other points of view, and are sensitive to communication differences. We achieve organizational goals through inclusive problem solving, planning, and decision-making. Community partnerships are included in this effort.

All city supervisors are responsible for appropriately incorporating the principles of community sustainability into work on a routine basis; understanding and enforcing relevant collective bargaining agreements and management policies; hiring and firing supervised employees or making related recommendations; ensuring employees are trained initially and on an ongoing basis, as needed; providing appropriate feedback to employees by monitoring day-to-day performance; completing performance evaluations on time; correcting problems in employee work habits or performance in a timely manner; prioritizing and scheduling work functions and vacations; ensuring adherence to established safety standards; ensuring the timely completion and submission of all paperwork required by the city to process employee transactions, insurance or injury claims, etc.; maintaining related records; and ensuring the accuracy of reported time use.

Nothing in this position description restricts the city's right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time. This position description reflects the city's assignment of essential functions; it does not prescribe nor restrict the tasks that may be assigned. In addition, this position description may be subject to change at any time, and that the person filling this position serves at the will of the City Manager and/or her/his designees(s).


How to Apply:
Interested applicants should forward a cover letter and resume to:

Affion Public
20 North 2nd Street, Suite 200
Harrisburg, PA 17101
Fax: 717-214-2205

Posted: 03/22/2022