Los Angeles County has an ambitious sustainability agenda to transform itself into a thriving region that provides equitable opportunities for all, is resilient in the face of a changing climate, and is powered by sustainable energy sources. Sustainable infrastructure projects, for which state and federal funding is available, are essential to implementing this sustainability agenda. The Executive Fellow will work across departments and with community stakeholders to align infrastructure initiatives with the County’s sustainability plan.
Fellowship Dates: October 23, 2023 – October 21, 2024
Salary: Executive Fellows are FUSE employees and receive an annual base salary of $80,000. Fellows can also access various health, dental, and vision insurance benefits. Compensation for this year of public service is not intended to represent market-rate compensation for the experienced professionals in our program.
ABOUT THE FUSE EXECUTIVE FELLOWSHIP
FUSE is a national nonprofit working to expand social and economic opportunities, particularly for communities that have been limited by a history of systemic and institutionalized racism. FUSE partners with local governments and communities to more effectively address pressing challenges by placing experienced professionals within city and county agencies. These FUSE Executive Fellows lead strategic projects designed to advance racial equity and accelerate systems change. Since 2012, FUSE has led over 250 projects in 40 governments across 20 states, impacting the lives of 25 million people.
When designing each fellowship project, FUSE works closely with government partners and local stakeholders to define a scope of work that will achieve substantive progress toward regional priorities. FUSE then conducts an individualized search for each project to ensure that the selected candidate has at least 15 years of professional experience, the required competencies for the role, and deep connections to the communities being served. They are data-driven and results-oriented and able to effectively manage complex projects by developing actionable roadmaps and monitoring progress to completion.
Executive Fellows are hired as FUSE employees and embedded in government agencies for at least one year of full-time work. Throughout their fellowships, they receive training, coaching, and professional support from FUSE to help achieve their project goals. FUSE Executive Fellows bring diverse perspectives and new approaches to their projects. They build strong relationships with diverse arrays of stakeholders, foster alignment within and across various layers of government, and build partnerships between governments and communities.
Los Angeles County is one of the largest urbanized areas in the country with a population of nearly 10 million people. In 2016 the County established the Chief Sustainability Office (CSO) and appointed a Chief Sustainability Officer to lead and coordinate efforts across County government and the region to create a more sustainable community for all residents. In 2019, the County Board of Supervisors adopted its first OurCounty Sustainability Plan, the most ambitious such plan in the country. The plan envisions a future Los Angeles County that is safe, healthy and just for everyone and whose economy runs on renewable energy.
The CSO, in collaboration with partners across the County, has an important role to play to ensure that there is alignment across individual infrastructure projects and the overall vision. To this end, the Chief Sustainability Officer as well as a leader from the CSO and from the Department of Public Works will lead The Environmental, Sustainability, & Resilience Committee of InfrastructureLA. InfrastructureLA is an effort to maximize the grant funding the Los Angeles County region, including regional partners, receives for infrastructure projects. Significant funding is available for sustainable infrastructure projects from state and federal sources. Community engagement, broad and diverse stakeholder input, and transparency are key elements to ensure that infrastructure projects advance the OurCounty plan.
Los Angeles County will partner with FUSE to pursue funding for infrastructure projects that advance the County’s vision for a sustainable future. The FUSE Executive Fellow will help manage the work of the Environmental, Sustainability, & Resilience Committee, aid in matching funding opportunities to sustainable infrastructure projects that meet community needs, and move the OurCounty sustainability plan forward. The project is critical to achieving the ambitious sustainability agenda of one of the country’s largest, urban regions.
PROJECT SUMMARY & POTENTIAL DELIVERABLES
The following provides a general overview of the proposed fellowship project. This project summary and the potential deliverables will be collaboratively revisited by the host agency, the fellow, and FUSE staff during the first few months of the fellowship.
The Executive Fellow will work within the Chief Sustainability Office, collaborate closely with other County departments, and engage with community members and stakeholders to support efforts to create a more sustainable future for Los Angeles County through infrastructure improvements.
The Executive Fellow’s role will include:
- Strategically facilitating the work of InfrastructureLA’s Environmental, Sustainability, and Resiliency Committee. This is likely to include leading the development of a charter for the Committee, ensuring appropriate stakeholders are engaged in Committee meetings and initiatives, and helping set an agenda for the Committee’s work.
- Supporting implementation of two sustainability grants the County is pursuing. One is to work with other local governments in and around Los Angeles County and Orange County to create a regional climate action plan. The other is to work with community stakeholders to develop plans to address urgent sustainable infrastructure challenges in unincorporated areas of the county.
- Supporting work to leverage federal and state grant opportunities to focus on climate-resilient infrastructure across the County. This includes matching potential projects with state and federal grant sources and ensuring that grant applications explicitly align with sustainability priorities identified in the OurCounty plan and by the Environment, Sustainability, and Resilience Committee.
The County has other resources — staff and funds for consultants — to carry out these efforts. The Executive Fellow’s role will be to facilitate participation of key county government stakeholders and manage the overall process to ensure the outcomes of these deliverables advance the County’s long-term vision for a sustainable future.
- Executive Sponsor – Rita Kampalath, Acting Chief Sustainability Officer; Chief Sustainability Office
- Project Supervisor – Rebecca Ferdman, Sustainability Policy Advisor; Chief Sustainability Office
In addition to the qualifications listed below, a background in climate and climate resilience issues is strongly preferred for this project.
- Synthesizes complex information into clear and concise recommendations and action-oriented implementation plans.
- Develops and effectively implements both strategic and operational project management plans.
- Generates innovative, data-driven, and result-oriented solutions to difficult challenges.
- Responds quickly to changing ideas, responsibilities, expectations, trends, strategies and other processes.
- Communicates effectively both verbally and in writing, and excels in both active listening and conversing.
- Fosters collaboration across multiple constituencies in order to support more effective decision making.
- Establishes and maintains strong relationships with a diverse array of stakeholders, both inside and outside of government, and particularly including community-based relationships.
- Embraces differing viewpoints and implements strategies to find common ground.
- Demonstrates confidence and professional diplomacy, while effectively interacting with individuals at all levels of various organizations.
FUSE is an equal opportunity employer with core values of diversity, equity, and inclusion. We encourage candidates from all backgrounds to apply for this position.