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Sr. Civil Engineer/Deputy Chief Dam Safety Engineer

Sr. Civil Engineer/Deputy Chief Dam Safety Engineer

Closes: Open until filled
Starting Range: $92,805 to $138,852
Full Range: $92,805 to $155,483

Location: Mission WA, Spokane, WA  

Job Description

Are you passionate about engineering excellence and committed to ensuring the safety of critical infrastructure? Avista, a leader in energy and utility services, is seeking a
Senior Civil Engineer to play a pivotal role in our dam safety team. As the Deputy Chief Dam Safety Engineer (DCDSE), you’ll collaborate closely with our Chief Dam Safety Engineer (CDSE) to implement Avista’s Owner’s Dam Safety Program (ODSP). Your expertise will directly impact the safety and reliability of our dams, making a difference in the communities we serve. If you thrive on technical challenges, mentorship, and project leadership, we invite you to be part of our dynamic team. Let’s build a safer future together!

This position will perform high quality engineering and project management work of increasing complexity which requires advanced technical proficiency with minimal work direction. The successful candidate will demonstrate originality and judgment in technical analysis, independent evaluation, selection, and modification of standard techniques, procedures, and criteria. The successful candidate will also be familiar with applicable equipment and design standards and regulations as they apply to their field. Mentoring, project leadership, teamwork and collaborative skills are essential.

  • Provide technical expertise in dam engineering and dam safety with general knowledge and experience considering gravity, arch, and earthen dams, hydrology, hydraulics, seismicity, seepage, soils, and foundation conditions.
  • Provide civil engineering expertise in planning, design, oversight, and construction related to delivering civil engineer projects.
  • Fully supports and assists the Dam Safety Surveillance and Monitoring Plan (DSSMP) Coordinator and CDSE with implementation and improvement of Avista’s DSSMP including review of data and relating to results of studies or investigations.
  • Arranges, coordinates, and manages dam safety related investigations, studies, assessments and evaluations as necessary to ensure continued compliance with dam safety guidelines.
Regulatory Compliance:
  • Review, stay abreast, and be fully aware of statutes, codes, regulatory requirements, guidelines, and standards related to dam safety and dam engineering to support implementation of Avista’s ODSP. Make recommendations to improve provisions of Avista’s ODSP to the CSDE that support continued regulatory compliance.
  • Directly supports the CDSE and dam safety team to ensure compliance with dam safety requirements and regulations.
Project Management:
  • Develop statements of work, requests for proposal, cost estimates and schedules for dam and civil engineering projects, studies, and analyses as necessary.
  • Lead and/or assist in planning and overseeing dam and civil construction, rehabilitation, and maintenance projects.
  • Manage construction projects, consultants and contractors delivering a wide variety of civil and dam construction projects.
  • Aids the CDSE in facilitating and managing Dam Safety Inspections, including Part 12D Inspections.
Team Leadership:
  • Promote a Culture of Dam Safety internally and externally while remaining actively connected and engaged in both the Utility and Dam Safety industries.
  • Provide mentorship and guidance to junior civil and dam safety engineers, and foster a collaborative and inclusive work environment that encourages innovation and professional development.
  • Lead, Facilitate, and Present Dam Safety Training to Avista staff including junior engineers, hydro plant operations, craft labor, management, and others.
  • Collaborates with internal and external stakeholders including the Dam Safety Team and Hydro Compliance, to ensure continued compliance for all regulatory reporting requirements.
  • Collaborate with project teams to integrate dam safety and civil engineering considerations into all phases of the project life cycle.
Emergency Response Planning:
  • Supports the Emergency Action Plan (EAP) Coordinator and the CDSE in the development, updating, and implementation of EAPs including testing and performing drills, including the development of hypothetical Dam Breach studies and the preparation of Inundation Maps.
Required Qualifications
  • Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering or related field from an ABET accredited Engineering Program.
  • Minimum of six (6) years engineering work experience required, dam engineering or dam safety experience preferred. If not already licensed, must have the ability to test for Professional Engineering licensure within 6 months of hire. 
  • Demonstrated skills illustrating their use of productivity, presentation, and analytical tools specific to his/her area of expertise. Proven ability to successfully manage engineering analysis and design work including that of consultants.
  • Demonstrated technical leadership within engineering.
  • Demonstrated positive and effective working relationships with internal and external parties.
  • Effective and flexible communication skills.
Sr. Engineer requires the above qualifications in addition to:
  • Licensed as a Professional Engineer.
  • Minimum of eight (8) years engineering work experience required, dam engineering or dam safety experience preferred.
Desired Qualifications
  • Strong knowledge of dam safety regulations including the FERC Dam Safety Program, engineering guidelines, and applicable state and federal statutes and codes surrounding dam safety.
  • Proven experience working successfully with FERC Regulatory Engineers and regulating agencies.
  • Strong knowledge of dam engineering and practices and industry standards.
  • Experience working with various disciplines including those at hydro plants, surveyors, utility crafts, engineers, and construction contractors.

To Apply
We encourage you to apply as many of our positions have step progressions to account for an incoming employee’s various levels of knowledge, skills, and experience.

Complete an online application and attach your resume and cover letter to your profile. All documents must be attached to your application at the time of submitting your application for review. No documents can be attached after you click "Submit".

At Avista, we believe our employees are essential. Through them we deliver value to our customers and the communities we serve. The physical, mental, and financial health and well-being of our employees and their families are important to us. We are committed to offering a comprehensive total rewards program comprised of an externally competitive, internally equitable compensation structure and a benefits package that allows us to retain and attract a diverse, engaged, and skilled workforce. Our benefits package includes medical, dental, vision, life, and disability coverage, retirement benefits, incentive plans, wellness resources, time-off programs and much more. In addition to our total rewards program, the Pacific Northwest offers abundant outdoor recreation, four distinct seasons, and all the amenities and activities an individual or family might be interested in. To learn more, please visit our benefits website at

Pre-employment screening requirements
Employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a drug test, background check and motor vehicle records review.   

Avista’s Commitment to Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action
Avista is a safe, inclusive workplace for people of all backgrounds, and we are committed to Equal Opportunity Employment, Affirmative Action efforts, and Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. We strongly encourage applications from women, people of color, people with disabilities, protected veterans, and all others. All qualified applicants will be considered regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, age, sensory, mental or physical disability (unless based upon a bona fide occupational qualification), Veteran status or any other classification protected by nondiscrimination laws.

Equity and diversity in our workplace is important to us. Please view Equal Employment Opportunity Posters provided by OFCCP here. Prior to the next step in the recruiting process, we welcome you to inform us confidentially if you require any special accommodations to participate fully in our recruitment process. Avista will make reasonable accommodation to assist a qualified person with a disability in the job application, interview process, and to perform the essential functions of the job whenever possible, where undue hardship would not be created for Avista. Please contact us at if you would like assistance.


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Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)

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