Job: City of Bellevue, Wash., Emergency Management Director

Not advertised as such, but think of the position as the director.

Most of you will know the drill. There is someone who holds the title "director" but the everyday work of the office is done by the lead person — who for outside of the organization, is called "the director." This is the case for a position for the city of Bellevue. Since the position is within the Fire Department, I'm guessing the fire chief is the city's emergency management director. 

See the advertisement below. Mike Letcher is the executive recruiter helping fill this position and his email is in the announcement below.

Some brief thoughts about the position. Bellevue is 5-10 miles due east of Seattle. It has its own urban center and is growing rapidly. I'm thinking that all new growth by Amazon in this region will be in Bellevue and not Seattle (the company is tired of the politics there). Bellevue is business-friendly and has a pretty diverse population. 

As I've said with all the Seattle positions I've advertised here, don't get enamored with the pay — the cost of living, especially housing, is very high in the region. The good news is that light rail is coming to the city very soon and that will help with commuting for someone wanting to live outside of Bellevue. Getting to Bellevue from the south, where I live, is a bear. If I had an 8 a.m. speaking engagement (13 years ago) in Bellevue I would allow two hours to drive there — from 40 miles south. 

There has been a number of Bellevue directors who have moved on to work at Seattle Emergency Management, the last four to be exact. I call it the "farm team" for Seattle. 

With that, it is an opportunity to excel! Announcement below:

City of Bellevue, Washington

Emergency Manager [Director]

Are you a leader that is committed to continuous improvement, innovation and working as the Emergency Manager in a world class city? Do you have a passion for public service? The City of Bellevue is looking for an Emergency Manager to join the city’s award-winning team.  Come and be part of a leadership team in one of the most innovative and forward thinking cities in the country.

The City of Bellevue, with a diverse population of more than 139,000 and more than 148,000 jobs, is known as a community with beautiful natural areas, a vibrant downtown, strong economy, with some of the nation’s best schools, and healthy neighborhoods.  The City’s Mission is to “provide exceptional customer service, uphold the public interest and advance the Community Vision”.   In Bellevue, this is achieved by a shared vision toward being a collaborative, innovative and future focused organization that is committed to excellence. 


  • Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with a degree in emergency management, communications, business or public administration or related field.
  • Five or more years in a lead or “potential” supervisory capacity.
  • Experience working in an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) during a complex incident.
  • OR any equivalent combination of education, experience, and training that provides the required knowledge, skills, and abilities.

  • Experience in a leadership role in a complex Emergency Operations Center (EOC) activation.
  • Certified Emergency Manager (CEM) by the International Association of Emergency Managers.
  • Completion of relevant emergency management courses such as the Professional Development Series, FEMA Independent Study courses, and appropriate ICS courses.
  • Skill in grant administration and experience with the Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP).
  • Knowledge of emergency management information systems (i.e. WebEOC) and alert and notification systems.
The salary range for this position is $95,168.52 - $131,306.52 depending on qualifications and experience. The City of Bellevue offers a number of retirement options and extends a full range of leave and benefits to employees.

A brochure, job description benefit summary and other information on the City are available at:

The City of Bellevue offers an unparalleled quality of life.

We look forward to you considering this great opportunity. If you are interested, please submit your resume and cover letter for the Emergency Manager position in Bellevue, Washington by email to  In addition to your resume and cover letter, a short 15 minute questionnaire has to be completed to fully evaluate your qualifications for the position.  The following is the link to the questionnaire:

Please complete the questionnaire and submit your resume and cover letter. The position is open until filled and review of candidates will start on Monday, March 15, 2021.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Mercer Group, Inc. Senior Vice President Mike Letcher

Eric Holdeman is a contributing writer for Emergency Management magazine and is the former director of the King County, Wash., Office of Emergency Management.