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District General Manager

Company: County of Sonoma
Location: Santa Rosa
Posted on: February 22, 2021

Job Description:

Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation + Open Space District General Manager
Salary: $153,966.84 - $187,152.05 Annually



The Position, Key Challenges & Objectives
The Ag + Open Space General Manager is appointed by the Board of Directors and works under their general policy direction. As an integral member of the County's executive leadership, the General Manager also works effectively and collaboratively with the County Administrator and County department heads, landowners, ranchers and farmers, citizen groups, private entities, and advisory bodies. The General Manager has full responsibility for planning and directing the activities and operations of Ag + Open Space. This includes developing standards for land acquisitions and plans for future acquisitions; acting as the District's agent for negotiations and consulting with land owners and potential donors to obtain gifts of land; and working with various agencies, community, and nonprofit groups to coordinate mutual goals for land planning and resource management. Additionally, the General Manager has responsibility for applying for federal, state, and private funds to supplement tax resources and donations, and analyzing and advocating changes in legislation affecting the District. The Ag + Open Space General Manager is supported by a four-member executive management team, with programmatic responsibilities in the areas of conservation planning, acquisitions, stewardship, and administration and finance. Some of the key challenges and objectives that the new Ag + Open Space General Manager will be addressing include:


Leading the District's efforts in achieving the goals set forth in the Vital Land Initiative, a long range comprehensive plan that prioritizes conservation activities through 2031
Engaging and developing strong partnerships with agricultural organizations and landowners, including farmers, ranchers, and tribal communities, land trusts, non-profits, Sonoma County Regional Parks and other recreational partners, Sonoma Water and other water agencies, resource conservation districts, cities, and community and business groups
Identifying and implementing process improvements to increase acquisitions, including greenbelts; evaluating dated easement restrictions to determine if amendments are necessary to be consistent with modern, best practices; streamlining the conservation easement process; and evaluating ways to enhance the customer experience
Working with partner organizations to identify technical and financial resources available to easement landowners, and connecting agricultural producers to available Ag + Open Space agricultural land
Integrating climate change and extreme event resiliency into all aspects of the District's work, including project prioritization, easement design, and fee land management
Developing plans to transfer the Calabazas Creek Open Space Preserve and Saddle Mountain Open Space Preserve to Sonoma County Regional Parks
Updating the District's Strategic Plan and developing strategies to seek reauthorization of the District's funding measure before 2030
Ensuring the District's investments and day-to-day operations support the County's objectives on racial equity and social justice


The Ideal CandidateThe ideal candidate for the Ag + Open Space General Manager will be an experienced professional with strong communication skills along with the interpersonal and relationship building skills to cultivate and maintain harmonious relationships with community stakeholders, subordinates, representative from County departments and agencies, local leaders, and the public. They will be an innovative visionary, who can anticipate issues, thinks analytically, and acts strategically to meet the current and future needs of the District. A decisive leader, who possesses integrity and is diplomatic and politically astute, but apolitical, would be ideal.
The next General Manager will be a responsive leader, someone who is even-tempered, collaborative, open, and committed to fostering a team environment, in which ideas and feedback are valued and supported. They will also encourage professional growth, development, and training of staff, and be an agent for change, evaluating and seeking to improve District processes. Additionally, the next General Manager will have a demonstrated awareness of Sonoma County culture to advance the District's mission of ensuring equity, diversity, and inclusion in both open space and land conservation investments and the District's day-to-day operations.
The successful candidate will have knowledge of the principle objectives of a public open space programs, including land conservation, public land use, zoning, acquisition, and stewardship; and the principles and practices of real estate law and contract negotiations, and tax laws relating to income and charitable contributions. They will also be knowledgeable of organization and management principles, includingpersonnel and fiscal management; the preparation of ordinances, regulations, contracts, and grant applications; and program planning and project implementation. Experience working with natural resources and agriculture, and knowledge of the impacts of climate change and wildfire mitigation are highly desired. The ability to establish and maintain effective personal working relationships with a diverse group of stakeholders is essential to success in this position.

To be considered for the position, minimum qualifications must be demonstrated. Overall education, training, and experience will be evaluated. Most typically, a qualified candidate would have a degree in planning, public administration, business administration, park management, natural resources, economics, recreation, or a closely related field; and 5+ years of management or administrative experience in governmental program analysis and planning, open space acquisition and management, or park management.

What We OfferSonoma County offers an attractive and competitive total compensation package for this position. The General Manager's salary is $153,966 - $187,152*, depending upon the qualifications of the selected candidate. In addition, we offer:Health Plan Choices - County paid premium contribution to several health plan optionsBenefits - Excellent dental, vision, disability, life insurance, wellness, professional development benefitsPaid Time Off - Competitive vacation accrual and additional management leave annually; 12 paid holidays, and an additional 8 floating holiday hours per year; generous sick leave accruals and 100% of accrual balance converted to service credit at retirementRetirement - County Employees Retirement Law of 1937. Retirement is fully integrated with Social Security. With pension reform, new employees as defined and eligible will receive a 2.0% at 60 - 2.5% at 67 formula (subject to PEPRA compensation limits); individuals who meet certain criteria, including establishing reciprocity eligibility pursuant to PEPRA, will receive 3% at 60. Incentive Retirement Savings Plan - A defined contribution 401(a) plan; a 3% County "foundation" contributionIRS 457 Plan - Pre-tax employee voluntary contribution up to the IRS annual maximum. Employee's contributing a minimum of 1% of base salary, will receive a match of 1% of base salary deposited into the 401(a) accountRetiree Medical - County contribution to a Health Reimbursement Arrangement to help fund post-retirement employee health insurance/benefitsVehicle Allowance - $215 per pay periodRelocation - Relocation reimbursement may be authorized for distances greater than 50 miles (Note: For out of area candidates, the expectation of the Board is for the General Manager to relocate to Sonoma County within a reasonable amount of time if selected for the position.)
*The annual base salary range for the position is $153,966 - $187,152. In addition to the base salary,the position receives a cash allowance of approximately $600 per month. Combined, the annualsalary is $161,124 - $194,328. Salary is negotiable within the established base salary range.Benefits described herein do not represent a contract and may be changed without notice.

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Keywords: County of Sonoma, Santa Rosa , District General Manager, Accounting, Auditing , Santa Rosa, California

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