Principal Biologist

San Diego, CA
Full Time
ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING + COMPLIANCE
Manager/Supervisor

Principal Biologist

For more than 40 years, Harris & Associates has helped to improve communities and create better places to live through smart, safe, more sustainable planning, design and construction solutions. Harris is a 100% employee-owned company focused on solving today's complex challenges in planning, design, and construction. Our offices and project sites span the West Coast in California, Nevada, Hawaii, and Washington with a staff of over 250 employee-owners focused on serving clients in the municipal, water, transportation, and education markets.

Harris’ growing Environmental, Engineering, and Consulting Division does industry-leading work in environmental planning and compliance, community planning and housing solutions, engineering design, municipal and district finance, and one water solutions. Harris continues to expand the scope of these services while also building new capabilities in planning, climate change/adaptation, hazard mitigation, resilience, and management consulting. If you are a passionate and motivated professional looking for a collaborative environment at a firm that invests heavily in your growth, you could be a perfect fit for Harris & Associates.

Harris has an opening for a Principal Biologist to join our Environmental Planning and Compliance team in the Biology Group.

The Principal Biologist will be responsible for:

  • Managing a team of biologists and providing team leadership
  • Successfully managing multiple projects, oftentimes with intensive field schedules and/or multiple tasks occurring at one time
  • Managing project with large-scale compliance projects requiring adherence to permit conditions
  • Independently developing work breakdown structure for control and integrity of work to be performed defined by the contracts and scopes of work
  • Being capable of providing guidance during difficult agency negotiations and consultations
  • Providing senior review of large, complex biological-based documents including Biological Resources Technical Reports, focused species surveys results reports, resource agency applications, and other technical documents
  • Providing expertise at and above a senior level to guide and train junior, mid-level, and senior staff
  • Leading the mentoring of junior, mid-level, and senior staff
  • Working with leadership to guide career development of biologists on staff
  • Working with leadership to prepare proposals and contributing to the growth of the Biology Team through business development
  • Participating in interviews for the Biology Team or with larger teams at Harris for various clients
  • Performing client and project management duties such as forecasting, tracking, accounting updates, invoicing, progress reports, and scheduling
  • Reviewing contracts for understanding of scope, fee, schedule, and deliverables, and all other contractual obligations
  • Monitoring and analyzing project costs, commitments, accruals, and changes, and takes corrective action where and when necessary

The successful candidate will have a strong work ethic, positive attitude, and proven record of working collaboratively in a team environment as a motivating leader.

 

Required Qualifications & Skills

  • Bachelor’s Degree in biology or ecology
  • 12+ years of experience as a biologist in San Diego County/Southern California
  • 10+ years of experience as a senior biologist
  • 4+ years as a project manager
  • Experience in leading field survey efforts of all sizes and managing field crew schedules.
  • Experience with sensitive species in southern California and has the ability to provide expertise across multiple
  • Experience leading habitat assessments, vegetation mapping, focused sensitive species surveys, general biological reconnaissance surveys
  • Proven experience acting as independent/primary author writing technical documents of various difficulty levels
  • Possession of a valid USFWS 10(a) permit to conduct wildlife protocol surveys for species in southern California, including, but not limited to two or more of the following: least Bell’s vireo (Vireo bellii pusillus), California gnatcatchers (Polioptila californica californica), southwestern willow flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus), large listed branchiopods (i.e., San Diego fairy shrimp), Quino checkerspot butterfly (Euphydryas editha quino) and/or other federal listed species
  • Experience in leading field survey efforts of all sizes and managing field crew schedules
  • Provides senior guidance on CEQA, NEPA, resource agency permits, and local MSHCPs concepts and requirements
  • Experience mentoring junior, mid-level, and senior staff
  • Outstanding oral and written communication skills
  • Data management experience, including electronic data collection in field; managing large data sets.
  • Ability to work in a high-paced environment where changing client priorities result in the need to determine creative ways to get the job done.

Preferred Qualifications & Skills

  • Experience with regulatory agency permitting processes and agency negotiations
  • Experience complex environmental issues and regulation requirements
  • Experience with ornithology, and sensitive bird species not listed under Endangered Species Acts
  • Experience with native plant species identification including rare plants.
  • Proficient use of Word, Excel, Adobe Acrobat, Google Earth, and other related software.
  • Experience with GPS units/software, ArcGIS, ArcCollector and sub-meter field data collection.

Work Environment

The Biologist must be capable of working in temperature extremes for long hours and be able to handle strenuous physical activity and conditions (i.e., hiking for hours a day while carrying equipment).

Compensation & Benefits

The annual salary range offered for this position is $120-145K. Actual pay offered will be dependent on the experience and expertise of the incoming candidate. 

We offer competitive salaries and benefits, including medical, dental, vision, and life insurance. Harris & Associates is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an EEO/AA employer.  We invite resumes from all interested and qualified candidates including women, minorities, veterans and persons with disabilities.

Harris & Associates is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, disability, marital status, protected Veteran status, age, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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