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Surface Water Quality Standards Team Leader (Scientist Manager I)(Job Id 16203)

Job ID: 16203
Agency: Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources / Division of Environmental Services / Surface Water Quality Program
Salary: $76,065.84 annually, depending on experience
Pay Grade: ESM 1
Closing Date: 05/17/2021
For more information on the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources, please visit
The mission of the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources is to protect and preserve the state's agriculture, environment, and natural resources with the vision of a prosperous economy, diverse, agricultural opportunities, clean air, clean water, and healthy families. The overall purpose of this position is to support the department's mission by protecting the water resources of South Dakota; lead a team of environmental scientists in developing and implementing the South Dakota Surface Water Quality Standards; and be a team leader for four scientists and summer interns and provides work direction to two additional scientists that monitor and assess South Dakota's surface waters. The South Dakota Surface Water Quality Standards form the basis for the department's regulatory, funding, and technical assistance activities for South Dakota's surface water bodies.
The team leader provides day-to-day supervision over the team of environmental scientists responsible for protecting the state's surface water resources by:
  • developing and implementing South Dakota's Surface Water Quality Standards by reviewing federal water quality criteria to determine the appropriate standards for the state;
  • monitoring the state's surface water bodies and fish life for contaminants to protect public health and the environment;
  • reviewing federal permits that may impact South Dakota's waters. These reviews are conducted to ensure federally-permitted activities will not impair South Dakota's waters;
  • assessing water bodies to determine the appropriate beneficial uses, as well as reviewing the water quality to determine if the beneficial uses are met;
  • providing technical guidance to senior management and the public, which requires a thorough knowledge in several environmental areas.
This position requires excellent communication skills to share state and federal water quality requirements with internal and external customers, including DANR staff and management, local government officials, federal counterparts, laboratories, and the general public; reports to the Surface Water Quality Program Administrator and will assist in selecting new employees and providing technical guidance, training, and review of team members' work; and prepares and provides input into performance reviews.
Nature of Work:
  • leading the team that monitors and assesses South Dakota's water quality;
  • assigning environmental reviews to team members and ensuring they are completed in a timely manner;
  • directing the team of scientists by reviewing work, setting goals, monitoring progress, and providing guidance to ensure the Surface Water Quality Standards Team is meeting the established goals and objectives;
  • acting as a technical reference on the team's activities and providing technical assistance to the Surface Water Quality Standards team, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and other external customers;
  • providing training to program staff and assessing their performance;
  • establishing and developing goals, objectives, and priorities for the Surface Water Quality Standards Team;
  • maintaining goals and objectives that are protective of public health and the environment, balanced with economic feasibility and promotion of economic development;
  • aiding in the development of the program's budget and planning capital asset purchases to ensure the team has the necessary resources;
  • assisting in interviewing and hiring new personnel and providing input on personnel actions, performance reviews, and discipline to develop a competent staff;
  • creating a positive work environment that maximizes individual and team development, leading to work consistency and goal achievement;
  • collaborating and communicating with other DANR programs and external customers to further the mission and goals of the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Most work is conducted inside a state office building.
A valid driver's license is required as some travel will be required to attend meetings outside of Pierre and provide technical assistance to staff in the field and complex field investigations.
Licenses and Certifications:
A bachelor's or master's degree in biology, environmental, physical science, or related field.
The Ideal Candidate Will Have:
At least four years of progressive experience equivalent to an Environmental Scientist Level 3 or 4. This role provides the opportunity to begin a leadership career with the State through delegated authority to lead a team, motivate, mentor, and impact team performance.
Knowledge of:
  • environmental principles and practices and how they apply to the control of water pollution;
  • chemical, biological, and physical characteristics of water and wastewater;
  • federal and state laws, rules, and regulations as they pertain to water quality and water pollution;
  • techniques of environmental investigations;
  • department policies and procedures.
Skill to:
  • provide technical guidance, training, and work direction to a team of scientists;
  • communicate technical and regulatory information to the public, department management, and other customers in a manner suitable for the audience;
  • provide expert testimony to a citizen board;
  • determine the impacts of pollution on aquatic life;
  • assess environmental impacts to determine causes of pollution.
Ability to:
  • communicate clearly and concisely;
  • establish and maintain effective working relationships with internal and external customers;
  • interpret state and federal laws and regulations regarding water quality;
  • promote department goals and priorities;
  • meet deadlines and ensure the work of the team is completed on schedule, with customer service as a priority;
  • develop and lead a technical team;
  • provide work direction to the team.
Additional Requirements: Please attach a resume with your application.
The State of South Dakota does not sponsor work visas for new or existing employees. All persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and complete an Employment Eligibility Verification, Form I-9. The State of South Dakota as an employer will be using E-Verify to complete employment eligibility verification upon hire.
The State of South Dakota offers employer paid health insurance plus ten paid holidays, generous vacation and sick leave accrual, dental, vision, and other insurance options, and retirement benefits. You can view our benefits information at This position is a member of Class A retirement under SDRS.
Apply by clicking on the green "Apply Externally" button.
South Dakota Bureau of Human Resources
Telephone: 605.773.3148 Email:
"An Equal Opportunity Employer"