Job opening - State FMO

Kansas Forest Service is seeking a State FMO, after our prior was recruited for a national position he couldn’t pass up. Full details of the posting are below, but KFS is one of the smaller state fire programs in the country, but perhaps the fastest growing by percentage, with tremendous program growth in recent years. The new FMO will need to be able to represent and lead the program professionally in the national wildfire system, but also sit down at the local coffee shop with volunteers who are doing the best they can with minimal resources and relate to them. The fire program enjoys tremendous support from our administration, and solid partnerships with other state agencies, fed partners in the state and region, and fire departments around the state. It’s a great opportunity for the right candidate. Read on if that might be you.

About This Role:
Kansas Forest Service is hiring a regular, full-time position as the Fire Management Officer for their Fire Management Program. This position will provide leadership, coordination, technical, and educational support for fire staff and fire departments in meeting their needs through a full-service Fire Management Program. Success in the development of a balanced full-service Fire Management Program will meet the needs of the State’s fire services, emergency management, and natural resources clientele in a positive and professional manner. Responsibilities include leadership of a program that provides statewide services, fiscal and grant management, engaging and cooperating with our federal, state, and local partners, strategic fire management coordination, and providing leadership and support within KFS. The position is based out of the State Office in Manhattan, KS and is eligible to work remote in a hybrid/partial capacity.
Why Join Us:
The Kansas Forest Service is the 5th oldest state forestry agency in the country established in 1887 and is housed as an independent agency within K-State Research and Extension. The agency employs 37 full-time employees, and 45+ temporary and student positions, housed in Manhattan, KS and offices throughout the state. Our programs include Rural Forestry, Community Forestry, Fire Management, Conservation Tree Planting, Forest Health, and Marketing and Utilization.
For 50 years the Kansas Forest Service, Fire Management Program has provided vehicles and equipment to fire departments to enhance their fire suppression capacity. Current programs are the Excess Personal Property Program (FEPP), Fire Fighter Property (FFP) and the Equipment Donation Program (EDP). While some restrictions apply, FFP allows the departments to eventually own the equipment and to utilize it for prescribed and controlled burning as well as other civil emergencies.
Education opportunities are available at no cost for fire prevention education, suppression and prescribe burning. Some classes for land managers and fire fighters are specifically for use within the state, others qualify one to participate in incidents at the Federal level through the Incident Qualification System (Red Card).
Financial assistance for the Kansas Forest Service fire program is principally provided by the State Fire Assistance and Volunteer Fire Assistance Programs of the USDA Forest Service’s State and Private Forestry Division. State fire assistance funds, or SFA, provides funding for KFS fire staff to deliver services to rural fire districts and the citizens of Kansas with services such as training, wildfire preparedness and planning, suppression and response, as well as prescribed fire management. Volunteer fire assistance funds are pass-through funds to cooperating fire districts for ancillary products such as communications equipment, protective gear, hand tools, water pumps, and related items. Coupled to the above is long range planning assistance for Districts desiring a Community Wildfire Protection Plan, Fire Master Plan, or a Hazardous Fuel Assessment.
Incident support and resource management is made possible through funding from the Kansas Legislature. This allows KFS employees to be positioned through Kansas to respond when requested within 2 hours and enables KFS to pre-position wildland fire taskforces and assist local fire authorities with fire aviation.
Kansas State University offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes health insurance, life insurance, retirement plans, paid time off – vacation, sick, and holidays. To see what benefits are available, please visit:
We Support Diversity and Inclusion:
Kansas State University embraces diversity and inclusion. The university actively seeks individuals who foster a collegial environment and cooperative interactions with coworkers, students, and others. The University is dedicated to promoting the
Principles of Community.
Worksite Options:
This position is eligible for hybrid worksite. Work may be performed partially remote and partially on employer premises in Manhattan, KS.
What You’ll Need to Succeed:
Minimum Qualifications:
• Bachelor’s degree in Forestry, Fire Ecology, Fire Management, or other related field
• 5 years of relevant professional experience
• Familiarity with both the Rural/Volunteer Fire service as well as the Interagency (NWCG) wildland fire community
Preferred Qualifications:
• Master’s degree in relevant field
• Relevant fire service professional certifications such as Fire Officer, Incident Commander, ICS Section Chief, ICS Command Staff, etc.
• 5 years administrative experience which includes program administration experience and supervision of others.
Other Requirements:
• Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States at the time of employment.
How to Apply:
Please submit the following documents:

  1. Cover letter
  2. Resume
  3. Professional references
  4. Academic transcripts
    Screening of Applications Begins:
    Screening begins immediately and continues until position is filled. For best consideration, apply by November 17, 2023.
    Anticipated Hiring Pay Range:
    $91,000 - $95,000
    Equal Employment Opportunity:
    Kansas State University is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, national origin, disability or status as a protected veteran.
    Background Screening Statement:
    In connection with your application for employment, Kansas State University will procure a Background Screen on you as part of the process of considering your candidacy as an employee.