Job Overview


Earth Day is every day at EPA! Come help us protect the environment! Our diverse workforce connects to more than just a career-we share a common passion to promote a cleaner, healthier environment. Discover how exciting safeguarding our natural resources and protecting human health can be. We consistently rank as one of the top Federal agencies in which to work, with great benefits and work flexibilities. Find yourself at EPA. See more about us here:

This is a Senior Executive Service (SES) position in the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER), Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery, located at Potomac Yard in Arlington, VA. 

ORCR is an organization of about 180 people, with four Divisions, managing a total budget of approximately $40 million annually and about $100 million in state and tribal assistance grants.  ORCR develops and implements national waste management and clean up program policy and regulations working collaboratively with EPA Regional Offices and the States.  The Office is a leader in promoting sustainable materials management to conserve natural resources, reduce climate impacts, and to foster innovative thinking about wastes as commodities. The Office develops programs and partnerships with governmental and non-governmental entities to support resource conservation through environmentally sound recycling.  Ensuring the safe and protective management of these materials requires a comprehensive approach, including innovative regulatory and incentivized approaches to achieve these objectives.  ORCR also implements the program for remediation and disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) pursuant to the Toxic Substances Control Act.

The Director of ORCR will lead a highly talented office with work that is of high priority and high visibility.  The selected individual should come to the position already deeply familiar with waste programs.   High priority areas requiring the Office Director's deep and sustained personal involvement are likely to include 1) development of  a new program for compiling and tracking the movement of hazardous waste across the U.S., involving development of the regulatory structure, the new IT system to ultimately provide real-time tracking of hazardous waste, and the new fee structure to recoup the costs of the program from the regulated community; 2) development of high profile, controversial regulations such as coal  combustion residuals and a groundbreaking rule under  CERCLA to provide financial assurance for current and anticipated hazardous substance releases; 3) approaches to enable the beneficial use of non-hazardous secondary materials as well as hazardous wastes in a safe and protective manner, 4) advancing  the sustainable materials management program through strategic focus on key opportunity areas; and 5) updating national goals for the RCRA corrective action cleanup program.  Effective management and leadership skills are critical to achieving progress in this ambitious portfolio.  Personal expertise in these areas and the ability to manage them will be key. 

This position requires an ability to manage many active projects at once.  Workload is heavy.  At the same time, the potential for great environmental accomplishment is also high, and the interaction with talented colleagues, both within OSWER and in the Regions, States, and Tribes, is priceless.  This is a position for someone who wants to make a difference for the better, surrounded by other great people.


1.  Directs the conception and planning for the national hazardous and solid waste management program assigned to the Agency under the Solid Waste Disposal Act of 1965 as amended by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976.  Responsibilities include:  providing program policy direction to and evaluation of such activities throughout the Agency; establishing hazardous and solid waste research requirements for the EPA; determining the scope of functions; developing intermediate and long-range objectives and goals; recommending broad program staffing requirements and financial resources allocations; formulating strategies to support resource requests from OMB and the Congress; and ascertaining the activities to be carried out by the Headquarters organizations and Regional offices.

2.  Through subordinate supervisors, provides for the complicated and diverse administration of the development, coordination, implementation, and evaluation of the national program which includes such activities as:  (a) construction, demonstration, and application of waste management and resources recovery systems for the preservation of air, water, and land resources; (b) technical and financial assistance to agencies in planning and developing resource recovery and waste disposal programs; (c) national research and development programs to develop test methods of dealing with collection, separation, recovery, recycling, and safe disposal of non-recoverable waste; (d) guidelines for the collection, transportation, separation, and recovery and disposal of solid waste; and (e) training grants in occupations involving design, operation, and maintenance of solid waste disposal systems.

3.  Discusses the objectives of the Hazardous and Solid Waste Program with EPA officials and other interested federal and non-federal governmental officials as well as representatives of private industry, agricultural groups and the general public.  Studies the general objectives that are required by legislation, the problems that may arise, the background and purpose of the program, and the existing policies and laws pertaining to the program.  Evaluates the situation by considering all of the factors which may influence the program and collaborates with the staff of the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response and other EPA, Federal, and non-Federal governmental offices in developing the plans and programs, both immediate and long-range, to be formulated and carried out by EPA Headquarters and its field offices in order to achieve the legal, regulatory, and policy objectives of the hazardous and solid waste program.

4.  Establishes or directs and monitors the establishment of controls in reviewing the accomplishment of the Hazardous and Solid Waste Program.  Evaluates existing policies and programs by reviewing reports, conducting field visits, performing periodic and special studies, studying complaints from interested persons and groups, studying evaluation reports prepared by other agencies and organizations, etc.  Determines existence of developments and trends which appear to significantly influence the program and recognize the need for further studies.  Based upon analysis of trends and problem areas, directs and/or recommends the development of new or modified methods, policies, standards, procedures and programs.

5.  Establishes and maintains liaison and/or close working relationships with professional groups such as the National Center for Resource Recovery, National Association of Recycling Industries, Inc., and others active in solid waste management work in order to bring the Agency’s programs to their attention, to assemble and correlate information on the activities of these groups and coordinate this with the work of the Agency, and to enlist their cooperation.  Works closely with top management representatives of the industrial sector and citizens groups.

6.  Participates with this Assistant Administrator and his key staff members in formulating policy and developing and defining this broad programmatic direction for the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, with particular emphasis on solid waste, hazardous wastes, and resource recovery and their relationship and interrelationship with the other program areas within the Office.

7.  Serves or provides for program representation on Agency, interagency, and technical society committees of national and international importance.

8.  Directs the activities of the employees of the Office through subordinate supervisors.  Plans for staff development including assessment of training needs and performs supervisory duties including the periodic assessment of work assignments of the immediate staff to determine the most effective use of available manpower.

9.  Plays a key role in proposing and formulating the hazardous and solid waste management legislative program for the agency.

10.  Directs the personnel management and equal opportunity programs of hazardous and solid waste through subordinate supervisors.  Manages the selection, training, motivation, discipline and evaluation of Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery employees.

11.  Exercises oversight of contracts management and evaluates employee performance relative to contracts management responsibilities.  Responsible, through subordinates, for contractor performance and cost status to ensure that EPA receives the products or services purchased by the government.  Incumbent devotes not more than 20% of his/her time to miscellaneous contracts management.