Supervisory Public Affairs Specialist, GS-1035-14 (MPP-LL)

Washington, D.C
Oct 08, 2019
Oct 16, 2019
Full Time


Reclamation is seeking a career professional looking for an opportunity to capitalize on his/her expertise as a Supervisory Public Affairs Specialist. You can make a difference in the West by serving as the Deputy Chief of Public Affairs sharing in the overall responsibility of the oversight and management of the Public Affairs Office.

LOCATION: Bureau of Reclamation; External and Intergovernmental Affairs; Public Affairs Office; Washington, D.C.

Learn more about this agency


Plans and coordinates the day-to-day, annual, and long-term work for Reclamation's public affairs program, ensuring a cohesive, comprehensive and effective program. Oversee all internal and external communication plans and decisions while providing administrative and technical direction. Analyzes and interprets a wide range of public perceptions and attitudes covering all aspects of Reclamation's policies, programs and responsibilities.

Serves as a Reclamation liaison with the Department's Office of Communications and establishes and maintains effective lines of communication between Reclamation and other federal agencies, states governments, NGOs, and key stakeholders. Uses the news media, web-based and social media products, and other communications channels to report, explain, and interpret to the public the Department's policies, programs, and activities; speaks on behalf of the Department to the news media and the public about Reclamation's official work; ensures information provided to the news media and the public is accurate and delivered in a timely manner. The incumbent provides expertise on public affairs matters to the Deputy Commissioner for External & Intergovernmental Affairs, Commissioner, Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, Department Office of Communications, Office of the Secretary, and other Department officials, particularly on matters of a highly controversial, confidential, and/or sensitive nature; assesses potentially controversial issues which may have international, national, regional, and/or local impact; informs top officials on the views, reactions, achievements, and criticisms of stakeholders, customers, and the public.

Incumbent performs the full range of supervisory duties. Plans work to be accomplished, sets priorities, and establishes schedules for work completion. Manages and helps oversee public affairs program budgets and cost outlays.

Travel Required

25% or less - Frequent travel maybe required

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship or U.S. National.
  • Suitable for Federal Employment, determined by background investigation.
  • You must submit resume and supporting documentation.
  • You must meet specialized experience requirements.
  • For Veterans consideration, submit required document(s).

You must meet all qualification requirements, including time-in-grade restrictions and any selective factors, by the closing date of this announcement.

TIME-IN-GRADE: Current career or career-conditional employees of the Federal government, or former career or career-conditional employees, who have a break in service of less than one year, are required to meet the time-in-grade restriction of one year of Federal experience at the next lower grade, with few exceptions outlined in 5 CFR 300.603(b).


All applicants must possess one year of specialized experience. To meet specialized experience, your resume must describe experience that demonstrates the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities as defined below:

GS-14: One year of specialized experience equivalent in difficulty and complexity to at least the GS-13 level in the Federal Government. Experience, described in resume or other application document, as a senior public affairs specialist or related communication professional planning and coordinating outreach and dissemination of information through various media related to a federal agency or similar organization and its objectives, functions, priorities and programs. Relevant experience includes all or most of the following: (1) establishing and maintaining effective relationships with external and internal stakeholders (including the news media); (2) identifying audiences and determining the most effective media to use to reach each audience; (3) developing written and oral communication materials that effectively transmit information concerning organization programs, activities and priorities; (4) developing recommendations and briefing senior leaders for improving public affairs program activities based on analysis of communication efforts and feedback; (5) advising program directors and senior leaders on successful handling of outreach opportunities and adverse developments which might impact the agency; and, (6) supervising, managing and mentoring employees and team members to accomplish the broad and comprehensive range of public affairs activities.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.


Additional information

--The Bureau of Reclamation has determined that the duties of this position are suitable for telework and the selectee may be allowed to telework with supervisor approval.

--This position is designated as a MODERATE RISK Public Trust position. It requires a fully completed and favorably adjudicated Public Trust Suitability Background Investigation (T2S or T2RS (previously called MBI)) that is current (within the last 5 years). This is a condition of employment.

--Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. For more information visit: .

--Equal Employment Opportunity: The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability and genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, or other non-merit factor.

--Land Management Workforce Flexibility Act (LMWFA) Eligibles: If you are a current or former land management agency appointee - you must provide documentation to verify eligibility as follows: a) A copy of your SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, that reflects having initially been hired under competitive examining procedures to a time limited (temporary/term) appointment; b) A copy of SF-50(s), Notification of Personnel Action(s), that reflect having served under one (1) or more time-limited (temporary/term) appointments by a land management agency for a period totaling more than 24 months without a break in service of two (2) or more years; and (c) A copy of your Performance Appraisal Plan and/or Supervisor Memorandum that reflects having performed at an acceptable level during each period of service. To be considered under LMWFA, applicants must be well-qualified, i.e. meet the minimum qualification requirements, including selective factors, education and experience requirements and score at least 90 on the assessment questionnaire as established, and be able to perform the duties of the position upon entry. For more information on LMWFA, visit:

--Position is being advertised concurrently under BR-WO-2019-231 for all US Citizens and Nationals. If you are interested in applying under both announcements, you must submit application packages for each.

DOI uses E-Verify to confirm the employment eligibility of all newly hired employees. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, please visit .

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Human Resources (HR) will review resumes and transcript(s) if applicable, to ensure applicants meet the basic qualification requirements. We will evaluate each applicant who meets the basic qualifications on the information provided in the assessment questionnaire. The assessment questionnaire will take approximately 20 minutes to complete. Applicants determined best qualified will be referred to the selecting official.

Applicants will be further evaluated on the following Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs) through your resume and responses to the online questions.

--Mastery of communication principles, methods, practices, techniques, analytical methods and interpersonal relations practices to plan, carry out, lead and evaluate the overall public affairs and engagement program for the agency and bureau. Demonstration of a high degree of communication expertise to gain cooperation with individuals or groups with differing opinions and interests with respect to controversial or sensitive topics and priorities.

--Skill representing agency priorities and programs to a variety of internal and external stakeholders--including senior agency and Administration officials, state and local leaders, non-governmental organizations, other public affairs practitioners, news media and the general public. Ability to efficiently communicate complex program information in a way which non-technical audiences understand. Proven experience engaging directly with news media in interviews and other opportunities. Ability to independently represent the agency and bureau on controversial and/or sensitive topics.

--Successful experience and skill performing full range of supervisory responsibilities for diverse staffs of public affairs or related professionals. Skill mentoring subordinate staff and colleagues; providing training on current public affairs practices, methods and trends; preparing performance plans; counseling employees; motivating performance; and making decisions and recommendations for personnel actions. Demonstrated skill developing, implementing, managing and accounting for public affairs program budgets, spend plans and project plans.

Applicants must make a fair and accurate assessment of their qualifications. If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is apparent in your description of experience, competencies, skills, and/or education/training OR that your resume/application is incomplete, you may be rated ineligible or your score may be lowered.

To preview questions please click here .

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance

Drug test required

Required Documents

To be considered for this position, applicants are required to submit a resume (with dates of employment, i.e. years and months, schedule, i.e. hours worked, and grade if federal employment), an on-line assessment questionnaire, and the following supporting documents, as appropriate:

--SF-50, NOTIFICATION OF PERSONNEL ACTION: Status applicants (transfer, reassignment, reinstatement, promotion, etc.) MUST submit a copy of their SF-50s, verifying all of the following: highest rate of pay held, the full performance grade level obtained or competed for, and documentation of your current career or career-conditional status in the competitive service (Tenure 1 or 2) for which you are claiming eligibility. This could result in more than one SF-50 to be submitted. FAILURE TO SUBMIT AN SF-50 VERIFYING STATUS WILL RESULT IN THE APPLICANT NOT BEING CONSIDERED FOR THIS POSITION. DO NOT SUBMIT AWARD SF-50s.

--CTAP/ICTAP provides placement assistance to permanent Federal employees who are surplus, displaced or involuntarily separated. Applicants claiming CTAP/ICTAP eligibility must submit a copy of their most recent performance appraisal, proof of eligibility and most current SF-50 noting position, grade level, and duty location with their application. To be considered under CTAP/ICTAP, applicants must be well-qualified, i.e. meet the minimum qualification requirements, including selective factors, education and experience requirements and score at least 90 on the assessment questionnaire as established, and be able to perform the duties of the position upon entry. For information on CTAP/ICTAP, visit: .

--For candidates eligible under the Veterans Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA) you must submit the appropriate DD-214 (Member 4 Copy) documenting your eligibility.

--SPECIAL NON-COMPETITIVE APPOINTING AUTHORITIES: For more information on special non-competitive appointing authorities visit:

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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