The Gulf Regional Planning Commission
Biloxi, Mississippi
To Apply:

Job Function

The Gulf Regional Planning Commission (GRPC) is seeking applicants for the position of executive director. GRPC is a governmental agency located in Biloxi, MS, representing the three coastal counties and twelve cities along the gulf coast. The agency was created under MS State Code 17-1-29, as a regional planning body for the purpose of advising the local governments on a wide range of issues. In 1972 the governor designated GRPC as the metropolitan planning organization (MPO) and since then much of the work performed by the agency has been related to transportation. There are currently 11 employees. The agency is governed by a board of commissioners that meet monthly. The executive director reports to the board.

As the executive director, the individual is expected to work with the staff to maintain a team building approach for productivity and high quality, professional workmanship. As the secretary to the board, the executive director prepares the annual budget, and reports on fiscal and administrative matters every month. The applicant will be expected to provide strong leadership of vision and direction, with a focus on developing new resources in service to the 15 jurisdictions of the MS Gulf Coast.

The position of executive director requires an individual with strong interpersonal skills to communicate with the board and staff, with elected officials, agency directors, and the general public. The applicant must have an aptitude for public speaking and writing, and possess leadership qualities to facilitate discussions and effectively manage meetings. The position requires an individual with education and experience in public administration, urban and regional planning methods, and financing under federal accounting regulations. Some out-of-town, overnight travel, and attendance at evening meetings and weekend events is required.

Essential Job Functions

  • Serves as secretary of the GRPC board of directors by preparing a monthly board packet, executive director report, and records the minutes of the meeting.
  • Develops and maintains knowledge of the concepts, enabling legislation, history, and philosophy of the structural framework of the GRPC.
  • Work with the GRPC board of directors to review and evaluate effective legislation, meet with legislators, and attend legislative committee meetings. Recommends continuation and/or modification to ensure complementary and supportive efforts by agency staff.
  • Maintains working relationship with the various divisions of the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) in order to:
    • Expedite project planning and development
    • Preserve the availability of transportation funding for local governments
    • Undertake projects of regional significance
  • Develops and maintains communication with governmental organizations (local, state, regional, national), and private sector organizations on behalf of the clientele, users, and cooperators of the GRPC.
    • Establishes and maintains relationships with key decision makers and leaders and communicates regularly with them to improve timelines, detail, and appropriateness of agency activities.
    • Positively promotes the agency’s mission and image by attending and participating in professional group meetings, staying abreast of new trends, keenly understanding and ensuring the GRPC is well positioned, well marketed and successfully attracting new clientele and specialties.
    • Reports regularly and advocates/negotiates for optimum combinations of human resources, funds, and materials to achieve agency objectives on a priority basis.
    • Review/evaluate/develop grant proposals for potential funding programs based on GRPC capacity to perform work, match requirements and timelines for submittal.
  • Identifies, supports, and encourages interjurisdictional relationships between GRPC member cities and counties by providing annual and occasional reports to local governing authorities on GRPC activities.
  • Encourages teamwork and promotes cooperation and joint programming, where appropriate, and makes maximum use of existing planning groups, and local regional, and state advisory councils to identify priorities and plan projects for the agency.
  • Produce and present an annual budget and expenditure recommendation on behalf of the agency to GRPC board of directors and MDOT in accordance with prescribed financial policies.
  • Provides planning, coordination, and support for obtaining goods and services needed for effective and efficient operation of the agency. Such services may include: official mail, space allocations, supplies, computer support and informational services, property control, and facilities maintenance.
  • Participates in agency staff meetings by reporting on and representing the core objectives of the GRPC.
  • Manages the employment process within the GRPC in accordance with the established board policies and procedures. This process includes: professional development; application recruitment and review; and candidate selection and recommendation (including terms of employment).
  • Responsible for annually evaluating and justifying the performance of GRPC personnel in cooperation with the board of directors. Consults with employees to resolve interpersonal staff or management issues affecting their job performance or agency objectives.

Minimum Qualifications:

Minimum–An earned Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited institution of higher learning in public administration, urban/regional planning, community development or a field of study determined by the GRPC to be closely related to Essential Job Functions; good communication skills; proficiency in the use of computers (Microsoft Office products, including Word, PowerPoint and Excel); the ability to read/interpret maps; and 10 years’ experience in the development and delivery of urban and regional planning projects. The level of salary will be commensurate with the individual’s qualifications, background, and experience.
Preferred–The minimum qualifications specified above and an earned Master’s Degree from an accredited institution of higher learning in public administration, urban/regional planning, community development or a field of study determined by the GRPC to be closely related to Essential Job Functions; previous experience working with local, state, or federal government agencies; and experience in the management of a similarly situated organization with knowledge of transportation planning and the responsibility of an MPO.

Physical Effort

Able to sit at a computer for extended periods of time without a break.
Able to load, unload, and transport program materials and audio-visual equipment.

Mental Effort

Be able to prioritize jobs and meet deadlines. Sufficient interpersonal skills to effectively deal with governmental officials, the general public, and co-workers within the GRPC. Be able to multi-task and adjust to short notice requests for information.