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Burns & McDonnell Staff Public Involvement Specialist - Environmental Services (Kansas City) in Kansas City, Missouri


Burns & McDonnell ( http://www.burnsmcd.com/ ) is seeking a staff-level public engagement/involvement professional with client management expertise and political savvy to lead the communication and community outreach in support of projects. The position will be based in our Kansas City, Mo office. Some travel will be required.

The candidate must have proven relationship-building and account management experience, the ability to think strategically, foresee and resolve potential issues, plan and facilitate client/stakeholder meetings, lead and mentor a team, have excellent project management and organizational skills, a proven ability to communicate professionally and interact effectively at all audience levels, have a flexible schedule, and be willing to work evenings and/or weekends, as needed.

Duties include:

  • Develop and implement stakeholder outreach and management plans to support projects through development, siting, permitting, construction, and closeout.

  • Work in conjunction with project managers to establish functional goals, strategies, and objectives and to execute the community outreach plans and processes accordingly.

  • Establish and maintain relationships with project stakeholders: public officials, residential and commercial property owners, grassroots organizations, and businesses affected by a large-scale transmission line, substation, and interconnect projects.

  • Complete public engagement risk assessments.

  • Guide sub-consultants to keep them on track in supporting project objectives (schedule, community relations issues, etc.).

  • Prepare estimates to include public engagement costs, schedule, collateral, etc.

  • Manage the development and distribution of effective public information materials, such as brochures, handouts, newsletters, mailers, Q&As, website content, and other materials to project audiences. Internal white papers and executive presentations may also be required.

  • Plan, coordinate, perform and manage the implementation of public involvement activities and outreach for the project, such as public meetings, virtual meetings, information sessions, municipal leader briefings, open houses, door-to-door outreach and other special events.

  • Manage the documentation of questions, concerns, and requests from public officials, property owners and businesses using the Company’s internal database.

  • Monitor and report to internal and client project management on critical communications issues and activities.

  • De-escalate tensions with stakeholders and raise concerns with upper management to head off potential issues, as needed.

  • Provide guidance, training, and assistance to project management and other project team members in communicating project information to the public.

  • Assume special assignments, projects and other duties, as assigned.


  • Bachelor's degree in communications, public relations, journalism, marketing or a related field from an accredited program.

  • Minimum of 8 years strategic communication experience (10 years preferred) or an equivalent combination of education, training and experience. Completion of a master's degree in a related field may be substituted for one year of experience.

  • Previous experience with electric utility and/or large infrastructure improvement projects.

  • Previous experience successfully communicating complicated technical, political, public policy, and/or work issues to the public through a variety of channels, including TV, print, web and town hall meetings required.

  • Media-relations skills and previous experience working with media outlets to develop and deliver key messages and manage content (news, events, crises, etc.)

  • Experience in developing content for social media and news releases. Web design and coding (for both traditional and social media platforms) is a plus.

  • Database management experience, mailing lists knowledge, GIS/mapping, data analytics/metrics highly preferred (Direct Mail experience is a plus)

  • Proposal writing experience.

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and knowledge of AP style.

  • Ability to understand and assist with the management of large-scale permitting and construction projects, and the necessary communications processes associated with such an effort.

  • Photography and videography skills are a plus.

  • Bi-lingual a plus.

  • Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite.

  • Expert analytical and problem-solving skills.

  • Ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines.

  • Highly organized and self-sufficient.


Job Public Relations

Primary Location US-MO-Kansas City

Schedule: Full-time

Travel: Yes, 10 % of the Time

Req ID: 211121