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Geomorphologist - F&W Research Scientist 2

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
Olympia, Washington State
$69,756.00 - $91,524.00 Annually
Closing date
Oct 2, 2022

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Career Level
Student / Graduate
Education Level
Job Type
Relocation Cost
No Relocation
Sector Type

Geomorphologist - Fish and Wildlife Research Scientist 2 - *11496-22 description image


Habitat Program
Olympia, Washington 

This is an exciting opportunity to provide specialized expertise in fluvial geomorphology and scientific leadership for directing a multidisciplinary research program. 

This position is the agency’s designated consultant on the interactions between hydraulic structures (hydraulic structures encompasses culverts, bridges, river and stream bank armoring, marine shoreline armoring) and fish and shellfish habitats. 

A bridge over a river surrounded by trees. The reflection of the trees and bridge are in the water. Photo is taken from an orange kayak - the front of the kayak is in the frame.

Kayaking down the Duckabush River – Photo Credit: Erick Helmer


With that in mind, 

Picture yourself, directing a research team performing research at the forefront of scientific inquiry.

This is an opportunity to have a major role in protecting fish and shellfish habitats. 

The optimal applicants take an interest in understanding others’ perspectives, and is committed to the service of the public, mission, and team. 





A rocky shoreline covered in driftwood. The water is calm and there are people walking in the distance. There are green trees behind the driftwood.

Shoreline armoring removal – Photo Credit: Theresa Mitchell


Our Research Scientist will…

Lead effectiveness monitoring of freshwater hydraulic structures

  • Plans, designs, conducts, coordinates, and manages effectiveness monitoring regarding the effects of hydraulic structures on fish and shellfish habitats.
  • Oversees up to 4 employees engaged in data collection for effectiveness monitoring. 
  • Works with other agency staff on effectiveness monitoring database development and upkeep and on data quality control.
  • Analyzes data and writes detailed reports on the results of effectiveness monitoring or research studies.

Oversee research projects regarding the impacts of hydraulic structures on fish and shellfish habitats.

  • Manage all aspects of a research project: study design, hiring and training technicians, site selection, data collection, data management, statistical analysis of data, modelling, report writing, etc.
  • As funding opportunities arise, seek grant money. This task includes study design, budget development, and proposal writing.

Serve as expert consultant to WDFW staff (primarily civil engineers and habitat biologists) on geomorphological issues pertaining to hydraulic structures.

  • Visits project sites to assess issues and provides technical information or expert advice.


  • Work Setting, including hazards:
  1. Work is performed primarily in an office environment, with exposure to hazards mostly limited to those commonly found in government office environments. Office work includes extended work with personal computers. 
  2. Field work can vary from 10% to 60% of work time depending upon season. Field work includes travel to and from field sites, performing measurements in extreme weather conditions, and maneuvering over rough terrain while carrying up to 30 pounds of equipment. Field work is conducted on foot in wadeable streams where slippery rocks, sticky mud, and steep banks are often encountered. Field work will entail working inside and on top of hydraulic structures such as culverts and marine bulkheads.
  • Schedule:
    1. Standard business hours are Monday – Friday from 8:00a.m. to 5:00p.m., but the incumbent must be willing to work a non-scheduled work week to align with business needs. However, during field season could work 4 ten-hour days per week. 
    2. A flexible work schedule will be considered at the incumbent’s request, subject to supervisory approval. Requirements for work hours in the Natural Resources Building will be subject to WDFW’s COVID and telecommuting policies. 
  • Travel Requirements:
  • Multi-day, overnight travel may be required during field season (June through mid-November) to efficiently conduct data collection tasks and/or supervise field crews. Travel requirements include travel throughout the state.
  • Tools and Equipment:
  • Instruments or devices used for the measurement of stream channels, hydraulic structures, and fish habitats, including surveyor’s levels, laser levels, laser range finders, global positioning systems, water current meters, and electronic data loggers. 




Closely related qualifying experience may be substituted for the required education on a year-by-year basis.

A Master's degree in fluvial geomorphology, hydrology, civil engineering, or closely allied field; 


Four years of professional experience designing, conducting, and supervising research on one or both of the following: 

  1. Fluvial geomorphology 
  2. The impacts of hydraulic structures (e.g., culverts, shoreline armoring) on stream channels. 

Please note: A Doctoral degree in one of the above fields of study will substitute for one year of the required professional experience. 


Has authored or co-authored three articles (published or in press) in peer-reviewed, refereed literature (two articles should be as senior author, the third article should be as senior or secondary author). 


A valid Driver’s License


A Doctoral degree in fluvial geomorphology, hydrology, civil engineering, or closely allied field.

Job knowledge 

Familiarity with hydraulic structures (particularly culverts) and their potential effects on fluvial geomorphology and hydrology at the site and reach scales.

Familiarity with 2-D hydrodynamic and morphodynamic modelling based on computational fluid dynamics. 


As a result of Gov. Jay Inslee’s Proclamation 21-14 (Download PDF reader) issued on August 9, 2021, all Washington State Agencies are requiring employees to be fully vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of your employment. Pursuant to this mandate, you will be required to provide proof of vaccination as a part of the hiring process. Please do not upload your vaccination documentation with your application materials - your vaccination status will be verified by your supervisor prior to your first day of work. Exemptions may be granted for religious or medical purposes.


Supplemental Information


Please note: Failure to follow the instructions below may lead to disqualification.


In order to successfully apply for this position, you MUST complete your profile at and attach the following to your profile before completing the online application:

  • A cover letter describing how you meet the qualifications of this position (Generic cover letter will not be accepted).
  • A current resume. 
  • Three professional references. 
  • Writing Samples


The Department of Fish and Wildlife’s priority during the Covid-19 health crisis is to keep our staff, candidates, and the public safe.  We are hiring and encourage you to apply to open positions. We have transitioned to a virtual recruitment process, to include web-based interviews.

All new employees must complete an Employment Eligibility Verification Form (I-9 Form) on their first day of work. If hired for this or any position at WDFW, you will be required to provide documentation proving you are eligible to work in the United States. For a list of acceptable documents, please use the following link:


Learn about our agency and the perks of working for WDFW!

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has some of the most talented people in the natural resource field.  We celebrate and value diversity, appreciating that a workforce composed of those from different backgrounds and experiences creates an inclusive environment, strengthens positive relationships with the local community, and brings new perspectives and approaches to fulfilling the agency’s mission. We value demonstrated skill in living WDFW values of Accountability, Service, Professionalism, Integrity, Respect, and Empathy (ASPIRE).

WDFW employees may be eligible for the following:

Medical/Dental/Vision for employee & dependent(s), Public Employees Retirement System (PERS), Vacation, Sick, and other Leave*, 11 Paid Holidays per year*, Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Tuition Waiver, Long Term Disability & Life Insurance, Deferred Compensation Programs, Dependent Care Assistance Program (DCAP), Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA), Employee Assistance Program, Commute Trip Reduction Incentives (Download PDF reader), Combined Fund Drive, SmartHealth.


This position is in the bargaining unit represented by the Washington Association of Fish & Wildlife Professionals and is subject to the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the State of Washington, Department of Fish & Wildlife, and the Washington Association of Fish & Wildlife Professionals. say yes to those who served

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Employer


To take advantage of veteran preference, please do the following:

  • Email a copy of your DD214 (Member 4 copy), NGB 22 or USDVA signed verification of service letter to
  • Subject line should include recruitment number, position, and Vet (for example: #10155 Biologist 1 – Veteran)
  • Include your name as it appears on your application in



To take advantage of military spouse preference, please do the following:

  • Notify us of your military spouse status by email at  
  • Subject line should include recruitment number, position, and MS (for example: #10155 Biologist 1 – MS)
  • Include your name as it appears on your application in


Note: Please blackout any PII (personally identifiable information) data such as social security numbers. For further information, please contact us at


As part of WDFW’s efforts to advance respectful and inclusive work environments, the Agency expects inclusivity as part of our professional interactions and communications.   Therefore, we want to ensure that all individuals feel welcome, are treated fairly and respectfully.  All staff are empowered to fully contribute to serving their work unit, Agency, and the citizens of Washington.

The Department of Fish and Wildlife is an equal opportunity employer.  We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity.   Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, disabled and Vietnam era veterans and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply.  

Persons needing accommodation in the application process or this announcement in an alternative format may call (360) 902-2276 or the Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) at (800) 833-6388.

If you are having technical difficulties creating, accessing, or completing your application, please call NEOGOV toll-free at (855) 524-5627 or

*Images shown are Pre-COVID, WDFW Staff follow current COVID Safety Protocol including the use of face masks. 

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