Commodity Services Bureau Chief

State Of Montana Helena , MT 59624

Posted 5 months ago

The Department of Agriculture is accepting applications for a leadership opportunity within our Agricultural Sciences Division (ASD). We provide diverse work and leadership opportunities with a wide variety of professional staff members who work hard to support the agriculture industry, one of Montana's most important economic sectors.

At the Department of Agriculture, our mission is to protect producers and consumers, and to enhance and develop agriculture and allied industries. The Agricultural Sciences Division provides agricultural, environmental, and public services and protection through program administration, cooperative agreements, enforcement, regulatory compliance services and laboratory services. The Commodity Services Bureau is given broad responsibility for providing technical as well as compliance and enforcement services to the general public, agricultural producers, industry groups, and the division and department in areas of feeds, fertilizers, seed, grain commodities, organics, produce and pest management, surveys and quarantines.

This position serves as the Bureau Chief for the Commodity Services Bureau. It is responsible for multiple statutory programs and directly supervises 7 full time staff and indirectly supervises 14 full time staff along with several seasonal staff. This position reports directly to the Agricultural Sciences Division Administrator.

The Bureau Chief is responsible for the administration and management of the Commodity Services Bureau including establishing overall program goals and objectives, setting program priorities, managing the budget, and directing and coordinating bureau operations with other bureaus, divisions, and agencies. This position is responsible for representing the agency at public, industry, and government meetings. The work of this position also involves personnel management which includes identifying staffing needs, overseeing training and professional development of staff, assigning section and program responsibilities, and performance management.

Most of the work in this position is performed in an office environment. The position involves in-state and out-of-state travel throughout the year to represent the agency, attend various conferences and meetings, conduct field office visits and fulfill managerial responsibilities. The position is occasionally required to conduct investigative and field work that can involve long working hours, under adverse weather conditions, in varied terrain and in isolated areas. The incumbent may be exposed to agricultural chemicals that require completion of appropriate training and use of personal protective equipment. Investigations and resulting negotiations can be confrontational.

Below are the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to be successful in this position:

  • Knowledge of statutes and rules relating to pesticides, feeds, fertilizers, seeds, grain storage and merchandising, produce, animal drugs, and plant and pest quarantine.

  • Understanding of governmental organization, budgets, operations and functions, including the legislative process.

  • Experience with program planning and administration, employment law, personnel management, practices and techniques, state budgeting processes, budget and fiscal management principles, administrative policies and procedures, and contract and grant administration.

  • Experience building and leading teams involving working across programmatic and institutional boundaries; skills in managing and guiding personnel in teams who are not directly supervised by the incumbent.

  • Experience with planning, strategic goal setting, and decision making.

  • Understanding of agricultural, environmental and ecological research, field operations and regulatory concepts, standards and practices.

  • Demonstrated experience negotiating solutions and alternatives to conflicting scientific, agricultural and regulatory requirements; planning, organizing, analyzing and interpreting complex information and data, and using professional judgment in arriving at solutions.

  • Understanding of agriculture; benefits and risks of agrichemicals related to agriculture, the environment and human and animal health; pest and emergency response; and safety concepts and procedures.

  • Demonstrated ability with clear and concise communication skills.

  • Experience with oversight and coordination of programs and major investigative or monitoring projects.

  • Ability to develop and maintain effective relationships with the regulated community, the public, interest groups, and other government agencies.

  • Demonstrated experience managing and motivating staff in a team-oriented environments.

Listed below are the educational and experience requirements for this position:

  • Bachelor's Degree in agriculture, environmental or natural resources sciences, or a closely related field.

  • Four (4) years job related work experience, with at least two (2) years of work in a regulatory setting and at least two (2) years managing professional staff.

  • Other combinations of education and experience will be considered on a case by case basis.

To be considered for the position, applicants must submit the following information online, through the State of Montana Career Site:

  • Resume

  • A cover letter addressing why you are interested in the position.

  • Successful applicant(s) are required to pass all Department of Agriculture specific background check(s) relevant to each position.

For a detailed job description, please email

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Commodity Services Bureau Chief

State Of Montana