Environmental Scientist III

King County LogoCompany:  King County

Location: Seattle, WA

Date Posted: June 22, 2017

Application Deadline:  July 12, 2017

Employment Type: Full time

Salary: $82,326.40 - 104,374.40 Annually

Environmental Scientist III

About the Position


The Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County (LHWMP) has an exciting opportunity for an experienced environmental scientist. LHWMP is one of the leading local government hazardous waste and toxics reduction programs in the United States, with an annual budget of approximately $18M and 73 staff across four implementing agencies. The program provides high-quality services including hazardous waste collection, behavior change initiatives, business technical assistance, safer alternatives education, and policy development. For more information on LHWMP including examples of program research, visit

The Environmental Scientist is part of a four-member Research Team that ensures program services are grounded in scientific evidence. The position plays a key role identifying, collecting, and applying scientific data to program services and policy initiatives. 

LHWMP is committed to workplace and service equity. We value diverse perspectives and life experiences in our workforce, and are committed to building a culturally diverse and inclusive environment for staff. The Program strives to embed equity and social justice in all services. 


1. Make a difference by conducting and applying research to help reduce human and environmental exposure to hazardous chemicals:

  • Develop and manage applied research projects (from concept to closure) on hazardous chemicals, hazardous wastes, or safer alternatives. 
  • Promote and apply research standards including, but not limited to, quality assurance and human subject protection protocols.
  • Develop policy and service delivery recommendations based on research and available scientific data.

2. Improve the health of historically underserved individuals and communities.

  • Develop a stronger understanding of health and exposure disparities in King County. 
  • Research chemical exposures that are unique to specific populations and income groups in King County.
  • Engage with impacted populations on research and intervention design.
  • Assist in developing culturally-appropriate intervention strategies to reduce exposure. 

3. Collaborate with strategic partners:

  • Develop productive working relationships with internal and external partners. 
  • Coordinate research activities with other federal, state, and local agencies.

4. Stay up to date on the latest evidence and provide scientific consultation to others:

  • Stay current on issues related to chemicals policy, toxicology, business pollution prevention, and safer alternatives to hazardous chemicals and products.
  • Prepare and present written and oral reports to diverse audiences, including the public and elected officials. 
  • Provide technical consultation to staff on research methodology and design, and provide technical review of materials prepared by others.



Candidates with the following qualifications will be successful in this position:
1. Knowledge and ability to apply scientific principles and practices, including:

  • A minimum of five years of experience in applied research in the fields of environmental science, toxicology, industrial hygiene, environmental chemistry or closely related field. 
  • Demonstrated experience conducting studies using human subject protection protocols.
  • Skill in developing sampling plans, including identifying analytical methods and formulating sampling strategies.
  • Skill in researching, using statistical analysis, and analyzing and interpreting data.
  • Exceptional skill in problem-solving, including use of rigorous logic and analytical methods. 
  • Familiarity with chemical hazard information sources.
  • Experience in at least one of the following: human health risk assessment, safer alternatives assessment, or business pollution prevention.
  • Demonstrated familiarity with relational databases and statistical software (e.g., MS Access, SPSS, SAS, STATA, or R.).
  • Experience reviewing the work of others for scientific merit.

2. Exceptional oral and written communication skills:

  • Demonstrated ability to oversee, write, and present complex reports for technical and non-technical audiences.
  • Ability to present the unvarnished truth in an appropriate and helpful manner, keep confidences, and admit and learn from mistakes. 

3.Strong ability to collaborate and leverage differences in a constructive manner:

  • Skill in group facilitation, problem-solving, and decision-making.
  • Knowledge of how to get things done through formal and informal channels. Ability to learn about and work effectively in different organizational cultures. 
  • Ability to develop constructive and effective working relationships with people at all levels of an organization, and with external partners.
  • Skill in promoting mutual respect and acceptance of all workers in a diverse work group.

4. Demonstrated commitment to promote high-quality customer service and continuous improvement:

  • Ability to meet the expectations and requirements of internal and external customers and use customer information to improve services.
  • Ability to learn new skills and knowledge, and pick up on technical issues quickly.

5. Other qualification requirements:

  • Skill in managing multiple tasks requiring attention to detail and demonstrated ability to meet deadlines.
  • Skill and demonstrated proficiency in using statistical software and Microsoft Office.
  • Possession of a valid Washington State Driver's license prior to employment.
  • Ability to lift up to 40 pounds, for example to move sampling equipment, supplies or coolers containing samples. Ability to work both in and out of the office, for example in small businesses, residences or other locations where hazardous materials may be present.

Desired Qualifications:
While not required, the most competitive applicants will have the following qualifications:

  • Graduation from an accredited college or university with a master's degree in toxicology, public health, environmental science, or closely-related field and/or equivalent education and experience.
  • Experience in product stewardship. 
  • Experience publishing in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
  • Experience conducting scientific research to support policy initiatives.
  • Knowledge of equity and social justice in government. Experience working with diverse individuals and groups in a culturally appropriate manner. 
  • Fluency in one or more of King County's top secondary languages – referred to as Tier 1 or Tier 2 languages in the County's Executive Order on Translation (Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Somali, Ukrainian, Amharic, and/or Punjabi).
  • Skill and experience managing projects. 

How to Apply 

To apply for this position, please submit all of the following: 

1. The online application form:
2. Responses to two supplemental questions (no more than two pages total)
3. A resume or curriculum vitae.
4. A cover letter that describes your interest in the position and how you meet or exceed the position qualifications. 

Please do not submit more or less documentation than what is required above. Additional documentation will not be reviewed, and incomplete applications will be disqualified. 

Note: Online applications are preferred. However, if you cannot apply online, go to for other options.

If you need an accommodation in the recruitment process or an alternate format of this announcement please inquire directly with one of the contacts listed below.

For questions about the position, please contact Alice Chapman, Hazardous Waste Unit Supervisor, at or 206-263-1195. For questions about the recruitment process, please contact Erika Yanak, Human Resource Analyst, at or at 206-477-0320.