San Diego – CA
The County of San Diego is seeking dynamic, independent, and innovative leaders to fill two positions for Chief, Departmental Operations. These two unclassified management level positions are in Planning & Development Services, which is part the County’s Land Use & Environment Group.

Under the administrative direction of PDS executive management, these unclassified management positions will be responsible for providing leadership and oversight over all functions and activities of the assigned division.

The ideal candidates thrive and have demonstrated experience in program management in a fast-paced, high profile and demanding environment; depth and breadth of experience in the discretionary land development process; and practiced in strategic planning and design. Additionally, ideal candidates will be solution-oriented individuals, responsible for ensuring excellent customer service and working collaboratively with stakeholders and applicants.

The ideal candidates will also possess a professional history that demonstrates the following leadership competencies and attributes:

  • A customer service-oriented management philosophy which transcends all levels of an organization.
  • Organizational and political awareness of sensitive issues and understanding of multiple stakeholder needs to develop consensus on projects and programs, including working with boards and commissions, community planning or sponsor groups, industry groups, community organizations, agency officials, and the public.
  • Strategic thinking and anticipation of future consequences and trends while applying knowledge appropriately.
  • Ability to mentor, develop, and advocate for staff.
  • Ability to convey information and ideas verbally and in writing in an open and articulate manner.

Ideal candidates will possess a bachelor’s degree or higher in public administration, urban studies, urban design, planning, environmental science, or a related field, and at least five years of professional level planning experience in the public or private sector. Ideal candidates will also have at least two years of full supervisory or management level experience in a planning, land use, design or environmental field.

Qualifying candidates will possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, or certified equivalency for foreign studies, AND, five (5) years of experience that demonstrates the ability to perform the essential functions of the classification, which must include two years of management or supervision; OR, a combination of experience and/or education as stated above.

Note: A master’s degree or higher degree may substitute for a total of one year. In order for education to substitute for work experience as indicated above, college level coursework must demonstrate progress toward a degree and may be substituted on a year-for-year basis.

The annual salary range upon appointment for this position will be $100,000 to $117,000. Placement within this range is dependent upon the qualifications of the successful candidate. Annual salary reviews are performance-based and goal-oriented.

Through operational excellence and attention to customer service, PDS strives to balance community, economic and environmental interests to ensure the highest quality of life for the public of San Diego County. PDS has six major divisions: Advanced Planning, Building Services, Code Compliance, Land Development, Project Planning, and Support Services.

The Department has an annual budget of $35 million and a total of 180 employees. For additional information on Planning & Development Services, click here.

The Land Development Division assists in the processing of discretionary permits through review of project engineering designs for safe and sustainable roadways, and by implementing drainage designs that prevent flooding and ensure water quality protection. In addition, staff provide review and support to applicants during the processing of grading and improvement plans for private and public roads and infrastructure. This division also ensures that project conditions that were identified during the discretionary phase are satisfied so the necessary infrastructure and mitigation measures are appropriately constructed.

The Project Planning Division manages the discretionary permit application process; the first phase of a three-phase process which includes, discretionary permit review, final engineering, and building permit. The division manages and applies land use policies and ordinances from the local, state, and federal level, in the review of privately initiated permit applications such as, Subdivision Maps, Conditional Use Permits, and Specific Plans. The division is also responsible for ensuring proposed development supports safe and livable communities. Applicants’ requests for General Plan Amendments and Zoning changes are also under the division’s purview.

Applications may be accessed and submitted on-line. To apply, go to, then link to jobs.

In addition to completing the application, please submit an updated résumé indicating academic degrees held and dates conferred, employment history and positions held, dates of service, areas of experience, levels of responsibility, key duties performed, reporting structure, number of direct reports or staff, and salary information.

Applications and résumés will be initially screened for minimum qualifications. An evaluation board will convene to review submittals and identify top competitors to be considered for further evaluation.

Although there is no closing date for this recruitment, the first group of resumes will be reviewed on Monday, August 24, 2015.


You may direct any questions regarding the application and selection process to Aaron Morgan, Senior Human Resources Analyst, Department of Human Resources, For questions regarding the position, please contact Patricia Cabello, Sr. Departmental Human Resources Officer, Planning & Development Services,