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Senior Wildland Fire Investigator, Natural Resource Investigator

at State of Washington

Posted: 11/27/2019
Job Status: Full Time
Job Reference #: 2624423
Keywords: investigator

Job Description

Overall Job Objective


 Senior Wildland Fire Investigator/Natural Resource Investigator
Executive Management, Law Enforcement Services Division – Tumwater
Recruitment #2019-11-7340
This is a full-time, permanent represented position.
Want to join something GREAT and make a difference?

The Senior Wildland Fire Investigator position is an affiliate of the DNR Police & Investigation Services program and is responsible for leading complex, high profile civil wildland fire investigations within their assigned areas for the primary purpose of recovering fire suppression costs of fires that are determined to be caused due to negligence.  They are also expected to provide training, mentorship and fire investigation oversight on wildland fire investigations conducted by region trained and qualified fire investigators.  This position may work with DNR Police officers, or other LE agencies, on criminal wildland fire investigations or task forces as directed.  This position serves as a statewide resource and will require some overnight travel. Note: This is a non-commissioned position.

What will we trust you with?
  • Detail oriented investigative work
  • Providing dynamic and effective training
  • Creating and maintaining respectful working relationships, both internally & externally
  • Leading and coaching region wildland fire investigators
  • Building teams
Why work for DNR?

At DNR, we value public service, innovation and creative problem solving, safety and well-being, and leadership and teamwork. At DNR you'll support the vision of a sustainable future by using your skills to protect and manage the state's natural resources for both current and future generations. As a DNR employee, you'll work with the public's interest in mind as we manage more than 5 million acres of state-owned forest, range, commercial, agricultural and aquatic lands. But managing lands is only half of our story. We house the Washington Geological Survey, a dynamic program that is the primary source of geological products and services in support of decision making in Washington. We also protect other public resources such as fish, wildlife, water, and provide public access to outdoor recreation. Two of our largest and most important state-wide resource protection responsibilities are fire prevention and suppression, and overseeing forest practices.

We are nearly 1,500 employees strong and dedicated to making DNR a great place to work. Our mission is to serve Washington's lands and communities; build strong and healthy rural communities; enhance forest health and wildfire management; strengthen the health and resilience of our lands and waters; and increase public engagement and commitment to our public lands and resources. In partnership with citizens and governments, we provide innovative leadership and expertise to ensure environmental protection, public safety, perpetual funding for schools and communities, and a rich quality of life.  At DNR we approach our work through the lens of making Washington a better place environmentally, economically and socially for current and future generations.

The Location

One of the world's most scenic places, Washington State offers breathtaking discoveries for people who love natural beauty and outdoor recreation, from the Pacific Coast shores to the rugged Cascade Mountains to the rolling hills of the Palouse. Your office will be located Tumwater, WA from which this position will help guide the departments Wildland Fire Investigation program as the lead (Senior) fire investigator for Western WA.
What makes DNR a great place to work?
  • Transitioning to a modern work environment
  • Mobile work
  • Infants at work program
  • Commitment to organizational health and wellness
  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council
  • Leadership that empowers and supports employees
  • Work/life balance
  • Leadership development opportunities
  • Educational aid and career development stipends
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness Eligibility
  • Opportunities to participate in wildland fire suppression assignments
  • Opportunities to stretch your professional skills
  • A comprehensive benefit package that includes employer contributions toward health insurance, paid holidays, retirement plans, sick leave and vacation days. Visit for more information.
Why do people choose to work for DNR?
"I enjoy the clients I support and there are a ton of smart, fun, passionate people in this agency that I have the privilege of interacting with and learning from. DNR is a great place because of the people who are here. They are passionate, hard-working, loyal, intelligent, kind, and FUN! The aspects of the agency that speak to me are how diverse the work is that we do; from forests to grass lands, from mountain tops to under water, the composition of the agency made up by various different responsibilities makes it so interesting."
"The idea of managing the resources in perpetuity really speaks to me. I like that the work DNR does tries to strike a balance between business and conservation and that I don't have to compromise one for the other because I am expected to do both. We are expected to be good stewards of the resources and the decisions we make mean perpetuity." 
Who are we looking for?
Required Qualifications:

The right candidate has:
  • As an NWCG certified Wildland Fire Investigator (INVF) fully investigated the origin and cause of at least 50 wildland fires, covering all cause categories. OR, has three (3) years as a full-time detective with experience conducting criminal investigations with a city, county, state or federal law enforcement agency AND must successfully complete Wildland Fire Origin & Cause Determination (FI-210) training and task book within 6 months of hire.
  • Ability to maintain current fire line (red card) status as an INVF by successfully completing the DNR's annual Work Capacity Test (light) for the INVF series
  • Exceptional skills using computer programs such as Microsoft Suite and Windows 10 operating system.
  • Experience in the principles, methods, and techniques of wildland fire investigations, civil investigations, public relations, court rules and proceedings, and evidence collection handling and storage. 
  • Ability to work on uneven terrain in all weather conditions.
  • The incumbent in this position is required to travel.
  • Must have a valid driver's license and have three years of driving experience. This position requires driving as an essential function.  Employees who drive for state business, whether in a state or privately-owned vehicle, are required to possess a valid license as defined in policy PO02-006 and abide by all other driver responsibility requirements. Finalists and/or interview candidates will be asked to provide a driving record from all states in which they have held a license during the past three years.
  • Must be at least 18 years of age at the time of hire.
  • Must successfully pass criminal background check (to include polygraph exam, fingerprinting & drug test) and obtain Basic Enforcement Training certification.
Desirable Qualifications:

  • A Bachelor's degree with a major in Criminal Justice, Law Enforcement, Natural Resources Management, Fire Science, or closely related field.
  • Expert Witness as a Wildland Fire Origin and Cause Investigator.
  • Successful completion of the Fl-310 training or its equivalent.

To be considered you must apply online at (Click on the APPLY button above). You must complete the entire online application to be considered for the position.
  • You must attach the following:
    • A letter of interest describing how your experience and qualifications relate to the position profile, required and desired position qualifications, and special position requirements. 
    • A resume including the names of three to five professional references
Carefully review your application materials before submitting. If you fail to submit the required documents or complete the entire online application, you may no longer be considered for the position by the supervisor.

Application Status – once you submit your online application, you can check your status by logging into your account.  Finalists for the position will be contacted by the hiring managers directly. 
Questions?  Please contact Sgt. Gary Margheim at 509-925-0932, or e-mail us at
Washington State Department of Natural Resources is an Equal Opportunity Employer and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any kind.  We are committed to providing equal employment opportunities in a fair and impartial manner for all persons without regard to age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, creed, color, national origin, religion, pregnancy/parental status, genetic information, military status, political affiliation, criminal history or the presence of any sensory, mental or physical disability or the use of a trained service animal by a person with a disability.  Persons with a disability who need assistance during the screening process or those needing this announcement in an alternative format may contact DNR Recruiting staff (360) 902-1350 or (360) 902-1128.  DNR may be contacted using the Washington State Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) by dialing 711.