Rural Development Specialist (Environmental)

Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC)

HI, United States 🇺🇸


Founded in 1978, RCAC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so low-income rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. Our dedicated staff and active board work to make our vision of vibrant, healthy and enduring rural communities a reality across the West.

Community and Environment Department

RCAC’s comprehensive community and economic development services support rural communities to create a vision, set goals and implement an action plan for community development projects. We work with rural water, wastewater and solid waste systems to make them sustainable. We also work with small systems’ boards of directors and staff to make sure they comply with state and federal regulations, and understand system finances and operations. Outcomes of RCAC’s work include: system regulatory compliance; access to resources for capital improvement projects; and board and staff capacity building in technical, financial and managerial best practices.

Position Description

The Rural Development Specialist (RDS) provides technical, managerial, and financial (TMF) assistance to small disadvantaged community water and wastewater systems so they can operate sustainably and deliver quality services to the communities served. The RDS works closely with rural residents and local leaders to assist them to develop and manage water, wastewater, or solid waste systems. Additionally, the RDS prepares and delivers classroom and individual trainings as needed to build the capacity of local partners.

Specific job goals, objectives and tasks are established for each employee as part of the annual evaluation process. Duties and responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Assess the needs of our local partners
  • Build technical, managerial, and/or financial capacity
  • Access financial resources to address local demands
  • Recommend and implement solutions
  • Promote and facilitate partnerships to maximize limited resources
  • Develop, prepare, and deliver group and one-on-one trainings
  • Provide excellent customer service
  • Prepare activity and outcome reports as required
  • Perform other duties as assigned

Skills and Qualifications

  • Ability to manage technical aspects of field work related to water and/or wastewater
  • Facilitation, mediation and meeting management skills
  • Familiarity with rural and tribal community culture and social norms
  • Ability to troubleshoot, innovate and problem-solve
  • Proficiency with personal computers including Microsoft Office
  • Ability to complete administrative and reporting requirements on time
  • Ability to listen effectively and communicate, verbally and in writing
  • Ability to work independently and in team environments, and to effectively prioritize multiple tasks

Physical Job Requirements:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable persons with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

Work performed in an office requires ability to operate computers and various pieces of office equipment, including telephone. Use may be moderate (average 2 hours per day) to heavy (4 or more hours per day)

While performing the duties of this position, the employee is frequently required to stand and/or sit for prolonged periods of time; walk; talk; hear; use hand to finger; handle; feel or operate objects, tools or controls; and reach with hands and arms. The employee is occasionally required to climb or balance; stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl.

The employee may occasionally lift and or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and the ability to adjust focus.

This position also requires moderate (up to 2 days per month) to heavy (up to 10 days per month) automobile and airline travel, including overnight travel.

Preferred Education and Experience:

A combination of experience and education is required to qualify for the position. A typical qualifying combination would be:


Three years of applicable experience in water, wastewater, environmental project management, or other closely related field (if a higher level of related education is possessed than is required, this education may be substituted for the experience requirement up to a maximum of one year). Experience in training, facilitating and mediating community programs/projects is highly desirable.


Bachelor’s degree (additional qualifying experience may be substituted for the required education).

Special Requirements:

Possession of a valid drivers’ license and proof of insurance that meets the minimum requirements of RCAC corporate liability policy will be required when traveling for business purposes.