Education And Outreach Specialist Ii

Thurston County
Full Time $5,785 - $7,694 Per year WA Thurston County Budget Development, 2000 Lakeridge Dr SW, Olympia, WA 98502, United States


Community Planning and Economic Development is a collaborative and inclusive work environment dedicated to accountability, consistency, and transparency.
The  (CPED) department is seeking a highly motivated to join our Community Planning Division. Under the guidance of the Public Engagement Senior Planner, the Education and Outreach Specialist II communicates complex information on land use, water, and environmental and conservation policy issues to a wide variety of audiences in Thurston County. This position will develop and implement outreach campaigns and educational materials on land use, stormwater pollution prevention, water resource management, climate change, agriculture, forestry, and watershed planning.
What you will be doing
The Education and Outreach Specialist II will design, develop, and deploy outreach and engagement campaigns and educational materials. This position will support several Community Planning Division efforts including engagement on long-range planning projects, information sharing for climate and water monitoring data, and strategic communications for conservation and stormwater programs including shoreline management, habitat conservation, forestry, agriculture, and salmon recovery.

This position works independently under general supervision and direction and may also represent the county on external advisory or community groups.
 Duties may include and are not limited to the following:

  • Plan, implement, and manage a variety of education, outreach, and public engagement programs, events, and activities such as workshops, tours, field trips, public meetings, etc.
  • Develop DEIJ-centered community engagement plans and improve accessibility to public information.
  • Develop digital and print materials, such as short videos, flyers, and graphics, using best practices (social marketing, Plain Talk, UX design, accessibility) ensuring cultural relevance, timeliness, accuracy, and transparency.
  • Create engaging and relevant social media content.
  • Analyze and interpret technical information to distill it in ways that are easily digestible for the communities we serve.
  • Conduct strategic research on Thurston County audiences and best outreach methods and media. 
  • Request and manage translations/interpreters, ensuring documents are provided in various languages for community members, as needed.
  • Participate in collaborative, regional education and outreach efforts.
  • Track metrics and evaluate programs and activities for effectiveness.
  • Administer and manage contracts and agreements for public engagement and education programs.
  • Represent the county and department at public meetings and formal public hearings on proposed projects. 
  • Research and identify relevant grant opportunities. Complete grant applications.
  • Organize and coordinate volunteers to assist with delivering education and engagement opportunities.
  • Develop educational programs for K-12 schools.

For a full description of all essential functions, including desired skills, please see the 

Join a Diverse and Dedicated Team

The Community Planning Division has a significant role in supporting Thurston County's strategic initiative to balance development with preserving the County's rural character, natural resources, and open spaces. 

As a part of our Community Planning team, you will have the opportunity to plan for Thurston County's future and solve complex community issues that have a county-wide concern. The Community Planning team works with other county team members, community groups, the cities in Thurston County, state, and federal agencies, and more.

The experts of Community Planning are on the leading edge of major issues affecting the residents of Thurston County including:

  • Habitat Conservation. 
  • Comprehensive Planning.
  • Stormwater Management. 
  • Water and Climate Data Monitoring. 
  • Rural Water Availability Planning.
  • Agriculture, Forestry, and Open Space Planning.
  • Joint Planning with the Cities in Thurston County.
  • Shoreline Management. 

Why CPED is a Great Department:
The team members of Community Planning and Economic Development make it a wonderful place to work and effect meaningful change. CPED is a department of highly motivated professionals working for the citizens of Thurston County and planning for its future. CPED is working to preserve history, ensure buildings are safe and energy efficient, plan for our future to ensure development is consistent with projected growth, and preserve the county’s rural character, natural areas, and open spaces.  
Why You'll Love It Here:
You'll enjoy a high quality of life here. Thurston County is located at the south end of the Puget Sound, roughly halfway between Seattle and Portland, and less than a two-hour drive to the coast, temperate rainforest, mountains, urban city, or farmlands. With year-round art festivals, parades, theater shows, concerts, and community events, Thurston County and its cities have something to offer for everyone. Locals enjoy hiking, kayaking, biking, fishing, walking on dedicated trails, and eating great locally raised and grown food.

As the state capital, Thurston County is home to a unique blend of industries, including state government, health care, retail, military, education, construction, farming, fishing, and logging. You will enjoy great employee benefits, including a retirement plan, pre-tax savings accounts, comprehensive health care, and dental/vision care for you and your family, as well as generous leave programs.
The County boasts some of the best schools in the nation and the renowned Hands On Children's Museum. Our innovative schools are highly rated. Thurston County is also home South Puget Sound Community College and two universities The Evergreen State College and Saint Martin's University. Discover more about life in Thurston County at.

What we offer our employees:
  • Work-Life Balance: We are committed to ensure that our staff experience the reward of public service, while also sustaining a routine that suits each individual’s lifestyle.
  • Plan For Your Future: As a member of our team, you will enjoy great employee benefits, including a retirement plan, pre-tax savings accounts, as well as comprehensive health care and dental/vision care for you and your family. Please visit our website for more information.
  • Paid LeaveFull-time regular employees earn a minimum of 12 paid vacation days per year in addition to 12 paid .
  • Robust Training Program: Employees are encouraged to attend County paid training to help them further their career, learn new skill sets, and stay on top of emerging trends in our industry. We also encourage our staff to participate in professional organizations and attend conferences. 
  • Flexible Work Schedules: Some of the options employees may take advantage of include alternative or compressed schedules and/or remote working.
  • Deferred Compensation: The County offers 3 voluntary deferred compensation plans for employees who would like to set aside additional deferred tax dollars into a retirement savings plan.
  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA)Employees can take advantage of Section 125 flexible spending accounts for out-of-pocket health care and daycare expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness: This is a federal program which allows full-time public service employees who have made 120 qualifying payments for certain loans, to get their student loans repaid. .


  • Bachelor’s degree in education, public health, environmental health, environmental sciences, or other closely related field. 
  • Four (4) years experience working in public health, environmental issues, or other related field promoting education, outreach, media campaign, public relations or other comparable experiences to successfully perform duties and responsibilities of the classification.  
  • One (1) year experience with budget management, grant writing and administration, and lead or supervisory experience.
  • An equivalent combination of experience and education that provides the applicant with the desired knowledge, skills, and ability required to perform the work may be considered.
  • Must have the ability to utilize a personal computer with related software to perform the essential functions of the position.
  • Current Washington State Driver’s License or have requested and obtained an appropriate accommodation.
  • May be required to possess a professional certification applicable to area of assignment (eg, Pesticide, Certified Health Education Professional, Hazardous Waste training, etc.). 

Desired Skills

  • Clear written, and graphic communication and proficient in researching and clearly communicating technical information to multiple audiences.
  • Strong oral communication for networking and interpersonal relationships.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with individuals and groups regarding complex or controversial public policy issues or regulations.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of DEIJ (diversity, equity, inclusion, justice), outreach strategies, and engagement approaches.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite, and web design platforms.
  • Knowledge of current social media best practices.
  • Knowledge of communication, engagement, and design best practices including UX design, Plain Talk, social marketing, behavior change theory, survey methodology, and marketing analysis principles.
  • Ability to engage with community members from a diverse range of industries or socioeconomic, political, or cultural backgrounds.
  • Knowledge of watershed planning and stormwater management, urban planning/land use, natural resource lands, critical areas, or other related topics.
  • Ability to coordinate and collaborate across multi-disciplinary internal teams or external partners.