Chief of Airport Planning

Los Angeles World Airports

Los Angeles World Airports
Emergency Appointment Opportunity


Chief of Airport Planning
Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA)

LAWA is a proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles with over 3,600 employees. The department operates, maintains, and develops Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Van Nuys Airport (VNY) and Palmdale Landholdings (PMD).  LAWA is governed by the Board of Airport Commissioners, a seven-member Commission appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Los Angeles City Council.  LAX served more than 88 million passengers in 2019.


LAX is undergoing one of the greatest airport transformations in the country and is embarking upon a major capital improvement program, which will improve the traveling experience and enhance access to the airport.  Projects include  runway and airfield improvements, terminal renovations, construction of a new automated people mover system, and a consolidated car rental facility. In conjunction with this airport modernization, the implementation of the airport’s Sustainability Action Plan is a high priority for LAWA.


The Opportunity

LAWA seeks a talented, energetic, and a committed individual who will work collaboratively in a results-oriented organization to serve as an Emergency Appointed Chief of Airport Planning. The Chief of Airport Planning will effectively lead and manage the Environmental Sustainability and Compliance Group within the Environmental Programs Division. Under the direction of the Chief Sustainability and Revenue Management Officer, this position will manage the unit charged with implementing LAWA’s vision, short and long term goals and strategies pertaining to sustainability and environmental compliance at LAWA. This position will lead the implementation of the Sustainability Action Plan, work collaboratively with other divisions on environmental compliance issues and to conduct planning, audits and other studies pertaining to resiliency and sustainability at LAWA.

The Position
This position supervises and performs duties that require higher-level technical expertise in the areas of sustainability, regulatory compliance, and planning. Duties include interface with other LAWA divisions, agency coordination, policy development and stakeholder engagement and outreach.

Work also includes preparing Board reports and presentations, advising Executive Management and divisions, such as Maintenance Services on water and energy conservation, recycling, clean fleets and maintenance of the LAX/El Segundo Dunes, the Development Group on building design and construction and Airport Operations, on compliance and sustainability best practices, protocols, regulations and implementation strategies. The position will also manage the Airport Carbon Accreditation applications for LAX and VNY, work closely with AQMD on the implementation of the Air Quality Implementation Program and MOU, manage greenhouse gas and other emissions reductions programs, work with major stakeholders on issues such as Ground Service Equipment, Renewable Energy, Alternative Fuel Vehicle Requirements, waste reduction, water and air quality programs, petroleum storage tank, stormwater and hazardous material programs as well the Title V permit.

Duties also include organizing and supervising staff, reviewing and coordinating comprehensive planning efforts, budget development and administration. A main component of this position will be to coordinate and collaborate with a variety of stakeholders, including groups within LAWA, other City departments, external agencies, political offices, community groups and various committees that interact with LAWA.


Candidates should be familiar with the development of Requests for Proposals, Requests for Qualifications, Requests for Information, consultant and contractor selection, development of cooperative agreements, memorandums of understanding or other agreements. This position will represent staff at meetings, both internal and external, and will coordinate and disseminate information to various departments and stakeholders. Candidate will work with executives and staff to advance project approvals, represent LAWA on key external committees pertaining to sustainability and environmental compliance and at meetings, forums and venues in the region.

Ideal Candidate

·         Have the skills necessary to inspire teamwork and adapt to rapidly changing environments and issues

·         Demonstrate strong leadership abilities and interpersonal skills

·         Possess a passion for and commitment to sustainability and environmental compliance

·         Have excellent verbal and written communication skills

·         Have excellent problem-solving skills, coupled with analytical skills to compile and analyze complex data

·         Have strong planning and conceptual skills

·         Be highly collaborative and have an open and adaptive management style

·         Demonstrate and motivate staff to provide high levels of customer service to stakeholders (internal and external)

·         Understanding of applicable laws, rules and regulations governing sustainability, environmental regulation and compliance

·         Be able to make presentations before the public, government bodies, and other agencies

Position Requirements

This position requires five years of full time paid senior-level managerial experience in the development, implementation, and management of sustainability programs and policies, regional and cross-jurisdictional sustainability planning and compliance; coordination and interface experience with stakeholders and agency partners. Experience in the industry could include environmental agency, planning agency, elected office (with focus on transportation policy), private environmental, engineering or planning firm, or non-profit group. Should have familiarity with roles and responsibilities of regional environmental agencies, and local stakeholders.


A valid California driver’s license is required, and full proof of COVID-19 vaccination or proof of exemption is required for employment.


NOTICE REGARDING EMERGENCY APPOINTMENT:  When a civil service eligible list does not exist for a class, a Department can fill the vacancy by “Emergency Appointment.” A candidate selected for emergency appointment will not gain civil service status rights to the class or position. An emergency appointment is not a regular  appointment.  It  is  a  temporary  appointment,  which  does  not  require  that  you successfully  compete  in  the  Civil  Service  examination  process.  Emergency  appointments are  subject  to  the  approval  of  the  Personnel  Department.  The  length  of  an  emergency appointment  is  a  maximum  of  one  year,  or  until  the  establishment  of  an  eligible  list, whichever  comes  first,  and  shall  be  terminated  immediately  when  a  regular  appointment can be made (City Charter Section 1013). Once the civil service announcement is made, all employees  interested  in  the  position,  including  the  individual  selected  for  the  emergency appointment, must compete for the position. An emergency appointment does not guarantee selection to fill a permanent/regular position.



The salary range for this position is $130,207 – $200,740 annually, depending on qualifications and depth of experience.


To Be Considered

Screening will be conducted to select the most qualified candidates for interview. To be considered, interested candidates should submit a cover letter and resume to:, with the subject line: Chief of Airport Planning, no later than November 22, 2021. Attention: Ken Phan


To learn more about LAWA visit us online at


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