Board Conservationist

Board of Water and Soil Resources

  • Who May Apply: Open to all qualified job seekers
  • Division/Unit: Central Region
  • Work Shift/Work Hours: Day Shift
  • Days of Work: Monday – Friday
  • Travel Required: Yes
  • Salary Range: $28.25 – $41.63/hourly; $58,986 – $86,923/annually
  • Job Class Option: Water & Soil Resources
  • Classified Status: Classified
  • Employment Condition: Full Time Unlimited
  • Bargaining Unit/Union: 214 – MN Assoc of Professional Empl/MAPE
  • Work Location: St Paul or Waite Park
  • FLSA Status: Exempt – Professional
  • Connect 700 Program Eligible: Yes

Job Summary

The purpose of this position is to

  • provide technical and leadership assistance and implementation guidance to Board of Water and Soil Resource (BWSR) staff, soil and water conservation districts, watershed management organizations, cities, joint powers boards and watershed districts, and counties involved in preparing and implementing water quality and quantity restoration and protection plans, including Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) implementation plans;
  • provide fiscal oversight, technical training, administrative guidance, and planning assistance to local units of government involved in implementing local comprehensive water and land management programs;
  • provide specialized technical assistance within a specific area of expertise on a regional or statewide basis and are also responsible for interagency coordination with the Minnesota Pollution control Agency (MPCA), the Department of Agriculture (MDA), the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the Department of Health (MDH), and the Metropolitan Council necessary for BWSR to carry out its statutory responsibilities.


Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in hydrology, soil science, land use planning, natural resources management, civil or agricultural engineering, agriculture, or closely-related technical field.
  • Two (2) years of professional work experience in soil and water conservation, hydrology, watershed management, water quality practices, land use planning, or closely-related technical field.
  • Knowledge of the structures, organizational procedures, and inter-organizational dynamics of local, regional, state, and federal government and their boards, commissions, agencies, and affiliated associations.
  • Oral and written communications skills that include the ability to explain technical matters to the staff and officials of local government units and the general public.
  • Ability to maintain self-motivation and work independently.
  • Negotiation, mediation, and interpersonal management skills to resolve personnel and interagency conflict.
  • Human relations, coaching, collaborative, persuasion, and team building skills sufficient to effectively work with diverse interests, gain cooperation for new approaches, resolve complex program problems with internal and external partners to accomplish common conservation objectives.
  • Proficient in the use of word processing, presentation, and spreadsheet software such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel including utilizing technologies in virtual meetings
  • Requires an unrestricted Class D Driver’s License: a single unit vehicle with a gross vehicle weight of less than 26,000 pounds. This is a basic driver’s license. Operators may also tow vehicles/trailers as long as the gross combination weight does not exceed 26,000 pounds.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Advanced degree in hydrology, soil science, land use planning, natural resources management, civil or agricultural engineering, agriculture, or closely-related technical field.
  • Three (3) years of professional work experience in soil and water conservation, hydrology, watershed management, water quality practices, land use planning, or closely-related technical field.
  • Experience working for and with local units of government.
  • Procedural understanding of the grant programs administered by the Board of Water and Soil Resources, including the role of watershed districts and soil and water conservation districts.
  • Leadership role in local government water program management.
  • Successful participation of the State of Minnesota Star of the North Fellowship program.

Physical Requirements

Requires occasionally lifting and/or carrying such articles as file folders, ledgers, and small tools. Although a sedentary job is defined as one which involves sitting, a certain amount of walking and standing is often necessary in carrying out job duties. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

Additional Requirements

This position requires an unrestricted Class D Driver’s License with a clear driving record.

It is policy of the Board of Water and Soil Resources that all candidates submit to a background check prior to employment. The background check may consist of the following components:

  1. Employment Reference Check
  2. SEMA4 Records Check
  3. Criminal History Check
  4. Education/License Verification

Application Details

Why Work For Us

GREAT BENEFITS PACKAGE! The State of Minnesota offers a comprehensive benefits package including low cost medical and dental insurance, employer paid life insurance, short and long term disability, pre-tax flexible spending accounts, retirement plan, tax-deferred compensation, generous vacation and sick leave, and 11 paid holidays each year.

Our differences make us stronger and leveraging them helps us create a workforce where everyone can thrive. The State of Minnesota is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to embedding diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility at our workplace. We do this by developing strong leaders and advocates, increasing cultural competence and understanding among all employees, and removing institutional barriers and attitudes that prevent employees from advancing as far as their talents will take them. We prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind based on race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions), marital status, familial status, receipt of public assistance, membership or activity in a local human rights commission, disability, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, or age.

How to Apply

Select “Apply for Job” on the Minnesota Careers page and submit an application/resume that clearly describes how you meet the qualifications listed above. If you have questions about applying for jobs, contact the job information line at 651-259-3637.

For additional information about the application process, go to

If you are a Connect 700 applicant, please submit your certificate to Bobbie Donat at by the job posting close.     


If you have questions about the position, contact Marcey Westrick at or 651/284-4153.


The State of Minnesota is an equal opportunity, affirmative action, and veteran-friendly employer. We are committed to providing culturally responsive services to all Minnesotans. The State of Minnesota recognizes that a diverse workforce is essential and strongly encourages qualified women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans to apply.

We will make reasonable accommodations to all qualified applicants with disabilities. If you are an individual with a disability who needs assistance or cannot access the online job application system, please contact the job information line at 651-259-3637 or email Please indicate what assistance you need.