Environmental Science Associates – Senior Planner

Environmental Science Associates (ESA) is an environmental science, planning, and design consulting firm committed to the principles of sound science, technical excellence, integrity, and the promotion of outstanding decision making and sustainability. As a 100-percent employee-owned company with offices located in California, Washington, Oregon and Florida, continuing to meet the needs of our clients as well as the strategic aspirations of our employee-owners requires that we look to add the very best professional talent throughout our practices and offices. Specializing in project planning, environmental analysis and assessment, natural and cultural resources management, environmental restoration and design, and regulatory compliance, ESA’s scientists, historians, planners, designers, and technical specialists provide critical thinking and in-depth analysis to guide successful policy development, project planning, and the creation of enduring multi-objective solutions. Joining ESA means becoming part of a family of environmental professionals for whom every day involves growing your career, learning, creativity, fun, and the satisfaction knowing that you’ve contributed to outstanding iconic projects, improved environmental stewardship, and a more sustainable future for our communities and wild places.

About the Position:

ESA is currently seeking a Senior Planner (Managing Associate or Senior Managing Associate) to work in our Northern California Community Development Group out of our Sacramento Office.  The successful candidate will be able to help grow the Community Planning + Design program and contribute to ESA’s legacy of innovation, creativity, quality service and best practices. The candidate will manage a variety of projects including general plans, specific plans, master plans, zoning codes, and related planning studies. Successful candidates will demonstrate a high level of expertise in the principles and practices of community planning and related land use issues, have a working knowledge of planning and zoning laws, and familiarity with environmental issues and regulations including CEQA. Urban design skills and experience are a plus. Candidates must possess the ability to lead teams and organize staff resources to deliver simultaneous assignments on time and budget, help pursue
and win work, and have excellent writing and verbal communication skills.


  • Prepare, manage, direct and provide support for community planning projects including specific plans, master plans, general plans, zoning codes, and related planning studies.
  • Manage project teams, subcontractors, work assignments, and contracts.
  • Ensure that all work is performed within assigned time and budget allotments, in accordance with projects scopes, and to client expectations.
  • Ensure that all work products are complete, accurate, legally compliant, and meet ESA’s quality assurance and control criteria and applicable professional standards.
  • Approve project invoices and payments, and coordinate with project accountants and clients to ensure invoices are paid in a timely manner.
  • Represent ESA at public hearings and meetings, make presentations, and respond to comments.
  • Build and maintain strong and responsive client relationships.
  • Help to define market gaps and new opportunities to maximize ESA’s market potential and depth.
  • Help develop and implement a marketing strategy to grow ESA’s services, markets and presence with an initial emphasis on opportunities in the Sacramento and Bay Area regions.
  • Develop leads, head marketing initiatives, prepare proposals, and win work.
  • Regularly meet with existing, past and new clients and contacts.
  • Coordinate with other groups to leverage, expand and help cross sell ESA services.
  • Maintain a high degree of involvement and visibility in relevant professional and business organizations and associations such as APA and ULI.
  • Represent ESA at presentations, conferences, classes, and professional events.
  • Supervise Community Planning staff.
  • Provide leadership and mentoring of staff on project management, client relations, technical issues, training, and other topics.
  • Plan and manage staff utilization and workload allocation.
  • Conduct performance reviews and goal setting for assigned staff, including recommendations for improvement, promotions, salary reviews and bonuses.
  • Participate in staff recruitment interviews, hiring and retention.
  • Maintain a positive and collaborative work environment that promotes professional growth and success.
  • Participate in regular group, practice, marketing and other meetings.
  • Contribute to the development, communication, and implementation of business plan and budget objectives.
  • Stay abreast of current case law and applicable federal, state and local regulations.
  • Further a legacy of innovation, creativity, quality service and best practices.

Qualified candidates should have at least a BA/BS with major course work in a planning, urban design, community development or related field. Master’s degree preferred.  A minimum of 8-12 years of experience in community planning is desirable.

ESA is owned entirely by our employees, creating a unique ownership culture rooted in a commitment to do work that matters, technical excellence, outstanding client service, professional development, and life-long learning.  ESA’s comprehensive compensation and benefits program reflects our commitment to our employees. Our benefits include: 401(k) Salary Deferral Plan with company match program, Employee Stock Ownership Plan, medical and dental insurance vision care, paid vacation, sick leave, 9 paid holidays, group term life insurance, short-term and long-term disability insurance, commuter/transit incentives, healthcare and daycare Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), tuition reimbursement assistance, performance bonus plan, and employee referral bonus program.\

How to Apply:
If you are interested in applying to become an employee-owner at ESA, please visit the ESA Careers page at www.esassoc.com or follow the link below:

ESA is an Equal Opportunity Employer, committed to a diverse and inclusive work environment.  (EOE M/V/F/D)