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Director of Facilities and Construction

The Buffalo Zoo is seeking a highly motivated, energetic, and highly articulate individual to serve as the Director of Facilities and Construction. The ideal candidate will possess skills and experience in the following core areas:
• leading skilled trades/engineers in all aspects of management of a multi-dimensional functioning public facing campus.
• oversight and management of all phases of construction and project management on a historic public facing campus.
• operating and capital construction project management, including budgets, bidding, oversight, etc.
• leadership skills and abilities to motivate, lead and hold accountable work groups.
• interface with a wide variety of other stakeholder groups (both internal and external).

Exemplary written and verbal communication skills are required for this position. Daily interactions with a wide variety of stakeholders of all skill levels and abilities is required. Candidate must be able to effectively communicate and work collaboratively with several different stakeholder groups within and outside of the Zoo to move projects and initiatives forward.

To apply, please send resume and cover letter no later than February 28, 2021 in Word document or PDF by email to: No telephone calls please. Position open until filled. For more information about the Buffalo Zoo, please visit our website by the following link:

The Buffalo Zoo
As one of the crown jewels of Western New York’s cultural and recreational attractions, the Buffalo Zoo welcomes 500,000 guests on an annual basis. The Zoo sits on 24 acres and includes a variety of buildings and habitats. Many of the components of the campus have historic significance. The Zoo is operated by the Zoological Society of Buffalo, Inc. under a lease agreement with the City of Buffalo. Since 2000, more than $50 million worth of capital improvements to exhibitry and infrastructure have been completed. In 2019, the Zoo’s five-year strategic plan was completed. Our mission of Building CommunityCreating ConnectionsSaving Wildlife is guiding our masterplan that is under development. This masterplan will guide the growth and development of the Zoo for the next twenty years.

Overview of Position:
As a member of the senior leadership team, the Director of Facilities and Construction plans, organizes, and directs the strategy and functions of the facilities, maintenance, and engineer teams. Through a team of skilled trades people and licensed stationary engineers, this position is responsible for the maintenance of the physical plant, HVAC, repair and appearance of all buildings, pathways, fences, vehicles, equipment, boilers, sewers, electrical, waterlines, and infrastructure of the Zoo. This position also provides oversight of the Zoo’s safety and security procedures and programs. A significant portion of this position’s time is serving as the Zoo’s lead project manager on all capital and other construction and improvement projects. As a member of the senior leadership team, this position serves as a key member helping set the strategy and direction of the Zoo as it moves into the future.

Essential Functions:
• Develops, implements and oversees the facilities maintenance strategies, including budget preparation/management, leadership of all facilities, maintenance, stationary engineer staff (either directly or through team leads/supervisors).
• As the owner’s representative, leads all capital project construction and major repair project planning, management and completion in line with regulatory standards and in partnership with other stakeholders.
• Oversees the Zoo’s safety and security programs, ensuring the campus is a safe environment for all animals, guests and staff. Assures compliance with OSHA and other safety standards.
• Assure proper maintenance of all equipment, supplies, blueprints, licensing, etc.
• In partnership with the Human Resources team – recruits, hires, evaluates, trains and manages maintenance and engineering staff as well as part-time and seasonal personnel.
• Participates in the overall planning and direction of the Buffalo Zoo serving as a member of the senior leadership team.
• Prepares and manages budget for the appropriate departments and accounts.
• Develops and oversees the Zoo’s asset management program.
• Contracts repair work when needed (roofs, sewer repairs, electrical, etc.)
• Actively and collaboratively works with Zoo staff, architects, engineers, regulatory officials and others to achieve success in all aspects of the Zoo’s facilities maintenance, exhibit and infrastructure improvements.
• Oversees the ordering, inventory of materials/supplies, work orders, and all record keeping of the department.
• Keeps records of gas, oil and electricity used.
• Inspects work progress and provides guidance as needed.
• Receives work request forms from all departments, prioritizes and distributes to appropriate staff. Maintains highest quality of work standards for all work performed by in-house and contracted staff.
• Directly or indirectly plans the work schedules and supervises the execution of work for the maintenance and engineering staff.
• Reviews problems of the Zoo plant daily and schedules repairs as they may be accomplished with minimum delay.
• Recommends purchases of vehicles and equipment.
• Provides oversight and serves as the Zoo’s primary contact for outsourced security services, assuring that standards for security operations and performance are maintained.
• Maintains and insures working condition of both fire and security alarm systems, and safety equipment.
• Keeps ongoing files of Safety Data Sheets in use at the Buffalo Zoo.
• Coordinates work of essential personnel onsite during inclement weather.
• Serves in an on-call capacity to oversee emergency response operations, as necessary.

Position Qualifications:

Education and Experience (Minimum Needed):
• Four-year degree in construction, engineering or facilities management, plus five years’ supervisory experience in a public facing environment.
– or –
• Two-year degree in construction or facilities management, plus seven years’ field and supervisory experience in a public facing environment.

Special Skills Required:
• Exceptional organization and project management skills.
• Ability to succeed in a continuous improvement mode in a fast-paced environment with competing priorities.
• Ability to communicate frequently and effectively with other Zoo departments, outside contractors, members of the public, government and regulatory officials.
• Thorough knowledge and understanding of facilities management principles and practices.
• Ability to work effectively and with flexibility in an environment where animal welfare and the safety of the animals, guests and staff are paramount.
• Ability to prepare, manage and interpret the departmental budget.
• Ability to lead the transformation of a department culture to achieve success.
• Ability to adapt and be flexible.
• Help promote the Buffalo Zoo’s core values to our internal team and external guests.
• Experience in construction project management such that projects are completed on time and in budget.
• Prefer experience in working with historic buildings and/or campus.
• Strong leadership skills to motivate and train staff.
• Experience working in a unionized environment.

• Must possess or be able to obtain within 30-days of employment a valid New York State driver’s license and have an average or better driving record based on the evaluation process of our insurance company. Retention of position is contingent upon maintaining required license. Must upgrade to classification appropriate to requirements (non-CDLC or CDL class).
• TB Test conducted annually.
• Must be able to work weekends, nights on occasion in emergencies, holidays and as necessary.

Physical Demands:
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to stand; walk; use hands; reach with hands and arms; stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl and talk or hear. Use computer hardware and software for extended periods of time (repetitive motion). Sitting for long periods of time. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.

Compensation and Benefits
This is a full-time, exempt position. Salary commensurate with experience. Benefits available include health plan, life insurance, dental, vision, 403B retirement plan, annual leave time, holiday time, and sick time. Benefits are available after the successful completion of an introductory probation period of 60 days of work.

The Buffalo Zoo is an At Will employer and all Buffalo Zoo employees are subject to employment eligibility and background security checks as well as testing for illegal substance use as allowed by law.

Equal Opportunity Employer

300 Parkside Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14214-1999