Buffer and Soil Loss Specialist – North

Board of Water and Soil Resources

  • Who May Apply: Open to all qualified job seekers
  • Date Posted: 08/18/2022
  • Closing Date: 09/07/2022
  • Hiring Agency/Seniority Unit: Board of Water & Soil Resources
  • Division/Unit: Resource Conservation 
  • Work Shift/Work Hours: Day Shift
  • Days of Work: Monday – Friday
  • Travel Required: Yes
  • Salary Range: $28.96 – $42.67/hourly; $60,468 – $89,094/annually
  • Classified Status: Classified
  • Employment Condition: Full Time Unlimited
  • Bargaining Unit/Union: 214 – MN Assoc of Professional Empl/MAPE
  • Work Location: Bemidji, Brainerd or Detroit Lakes
  • FLSA Status: Exempt
  • Connect 700 Program Eligible: Yes

Job Summary

This position exists to provide technical and administrative direction, program implementation and evaluation, and enforcement responsibilities related to the state’s Buffer and Soil Loss Programs under MS Chapter 103F to Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) staff, board members, local government units (LGUs) and landowners.  This position is also responsible for providing technical and program administrative training to BWSR staff members and officials and staff of local units of government and other government and private organizations involved with and affected by the buffer law or soil loss law to maximize the effective conservation of Minnesota’s water, soil and habitat resources.


Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in hydrology, soil science, land use planning, natural resources management, civil or agricultural engineering, agriculture, or closely-related field and two (2) years of advanced level professional work experience in soil and water conservation, hydrology, watershed management, water quality practices, land use planning, or closely-related technical field .

Experience must include 1) working for a state agency, federal agency, soil and water conservation district, watershed district, county environmental services or similar organization with environmental regulatory authority; and/or 2) working as a professional consultant involved in environmental regulation compliance. Qualifying experience does not include data collection and maintenance and construction activities associated with environmental and conservation projects.

Other requirements needed:

  • Knowledge of landscape ecology and vegetation including ecological and restoration design methods, agriculture water quality practices, and the establishment of pollinator habitat.
  • 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 lead and facilitate public and private meetings, convey information accurately, stimulate feedback and discussion, and confirm decisions made
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with a variety of customers, including state, local and federal agency staff, board members, and private individuals.
  • Negotiation, mediation, and interpersonal management skills to resolve personnel and interagency conflict.
  • Ability to maintain self-motivation and work independently.
  • 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 Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Adobe InDesign, and Adobe Photoshop, and other applicable software to develop and/or maintain information, guidance, tools, and outreach material 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.
  • Detailed 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.
  • Experience working for and with local units of government.
  • Procedural understanding of the grant programs administered by the Board of Water and Soil Resources.

Physical Requirements

Requires occasionally lifting such articles as file boxes and heavy hand tools or heavier materials with help from others and/or lifting and carrying light objects frequently. Even though the weights being lifted may only be a negligible amount, a job is in this category may require walking or standing to a significant degree or may involve sitting most of the time with a degree of 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 & Soil Resources that all candidates submit to a background check prior to employment. All job offers are contingent upon passing the following components:

  • Employment Reference Check
  • SEMA4 Records Check
  • Criminal History Check
  • Conflict of Interest Review
  • 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” at the top of the MN 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 http://www.mn.gov/careers.

If you are a Connect 700 applicant, please submit your certificate to Patty Sweep at patty.sweep@state.mn.us by the job posting close.     


If you have questions about the position, contact Tom Gile at tom.gile@state.mn.us or 507/696-1974.


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 careers@state.mn.us. Please indicate what assistance you need.