Water Policy Analyst (Healthy Rivers Program)

Western Resource Advocates

Boulder, CO, US

About Western Resource Advocates

Founded in 1989, Western Resource Advocates (WRA) is dedicated to protecting the West’s land, air, and water to ensure that vibrant communities exist in balance with nature. We use law, science, and economics to craft innovative solutions to the most pressing conservation issues in the region within three core program areas: Clean Energy, Healthy Rivers, and Western Lands.

In the face of population growth and climate change, the Western United States needs a strong and effective advocacy voice at the regional level to address changes that are already underway and to steer the West towards a sustainable future. WRA has aggressive plans to tackle these challenges. We envision a future in the West where:

Western rivers and lakes will have abundant clean water to support habitat for fish and wildlife, communities and agriculture, and world class recreational opportunities. The Colorado River will flow to the sea;

Our homes, buildings and transportation systems will be powered by clean energy. The West will prosper in a zero-carbon economy;
Half of western landscapes and habitat will be protected and connected to support thriving wildlife populations and unparalleled opportunities to enjoy the West’s natural beauty; and
The West will have clean air and clean water to support healthy communities and vital habitat.

Our Healthy Rivers Program promotes policies and initiatives that prioritize water conservation, water recycling, and urban-agricultural cooperation. We work to move away from building new dams and diversions that drain the life from our rivers, and instead to usher in a new era of water management focused on innovation, efficiency, and sharing resources.

Position Summary

WRA seeks a passionate Water Policy Analyst with knowledge of western water issues to join our Healthy Rivers Team to strengthen our efforts to implement sustainable water management practices that include (but are not limited to): water conservation/efficiency, alternative water supplies, and integrated planning processes. This position requires significant amounts of research, analysis, and writing, as well as working collaboratively with external stakeholders. Reporting to WRA’s Senior Water Resources Analyst, the Water Policy Analyst will collaborate with fellow program staff, conservation community partners, water providers, local governments, and state agencies to advance the next generation of water management strategies.


This position is based in WRA’s Boulder, Colorado office.

Job Responsibilities

  • Research and technical analysis of water policies, programs, and resources that advance local, sustainable water management practices;
  • Compilation of research and analysis into clear and concise reports;
  • Presentation of research findings to utilities, governmental organizations, and conferences;
  • Work with stakeholders to develop and advocate for new, viable water management practices at the state and local level;
  • Coordinate with WRA’s Communications Team on public relations efforts;
  • Some travel is required; and
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Essential Qualifications

  • 3-6 years of relevant experience, which may include academic experience.
  • A solid knowledge of, and demonstrated experience in, western water supply and demand issues is essential;
  • Excellent research, analytical, writing, interpersonal, and public speaking skills is essential;
  • Ability to apply communications skills to persuade, influence, or lead others on complex subjects;
  • Self-motivated, works well independently and enjoys collaborating with a team;
  • Strong organizational skills, with attention to detail and follow‐through;
  • Creativity, curiosity, patience, and a sense of humor; and
  • Genuine passion for the mission and work of WRA.

Ideal (but not required) Qualifications

  • History of working directly with water-related decision-making bodies;
  • Experience with land use or integrated resource planning;
  • Experience building work plans and leading efforts to secure measurable results

Salary and Benefits

Competitive salary based on relative experience. WRA’s excellent benefits package includes health, dental, and vision coverage, a 401(k) retirement plan, life & disability insurance, 3-weeks paid vacation leave, parental leave, sabbatical leave after five years, and an RTD EcoPass. Position is full-time exempt.

How to Apply

Applications will only be accepted through WRA’s online portal at https://westernresourceadvocates.org/about/jobs-volunteer-opportunities/apply-work-wra/.  You will need to upload the following in PDF format through the online portal:

  • Compelling cover letter to the attention of Richard Trilsch, Vice President of Finance and Administration, explaining how your qualifications match the needs of the position and your interest in WRA;
  • Resume;
  • Complete salary history and any salary requirement; and
  • Three references, including at least one former supervisor, with contact information and a brief description of your relationship. (WRA will not contact references without first checking with the applicant.)

Please be sure to mention where you saw the job advertised in your cover letter.