Recruitment #2011-5825-001



The Operations Division Director is appointed by and serves at the pleasure of the Commissioner of Public Works.

The City of Milwaukee is proud to employ a diverse workforce that is committed to providing exemplary service to the City’s residents. If you have a passion for being a part of an inclusive team of public servants, please consider the following opportunity.

What Milwaukee can offer YOU

Located on the western shore of Lake Michigan, Milwaukee is an urban hub bursting with energy. Milwaukee provides a casual sophistication – big city appeal without the big-city hassles. We are accessible and affordable, and our residents are welcoming. Milwaukee has evolved through the years, bringing together its unsurpassed old world charm with a breathtaking Art Museum, top-flight arts and cultural attractions, vibrant neighborhoods, lakefront festivals, recreational opportunities and great restaurants.


The Operations Division Director oversees the City of Milwaukee snow and ice control operations for 1,472 miles of city streets (7000 lanes miles) as well as protected bike lanes, City owned sidewalks, and bus stops to meet the multimodal transportation needs of residents and visitors. The incumbent manages up to 450 employees during snow operations as well as multiple private contractors, deploying over 350 pieces of equipment to execute rapid and calculated responses to winter weather events.  

Additionally, the Operations Division Director leads and supports the four sections within the Operations Division, including  Sanitation (garbage and recycling collections, two drop-off centers, street sweeping program, and code compliance); Forestry (urban forest management, boulevard landscaping and maintenance, plant nursery operation, and code compliance); Fleet (procurement, repair and maintenance of over 4,000 vehicles and equipment); and Parking (7,000 parking metered spaces, 4 structures and 44 surface lots, parking enforcement and the Tow Lot).

Essential Functions

  • Lead the Snow and Ice Team to deliver safe, efficient, and effective snow and ice control operations.  Maintain safe and passable streets throughout the city in order to provide residents and visitors safe travel and to keep businesses open to facilitate the economic health of the city.
  • Provide timely communication with the Mayor and Common Council for each operation and communicate the City of Milwaukee’s snow fighting efforts with the media in order to ensure that residents are aware of efforts to manage the storm.
  • Manage the snow and ice control operations by advance planning, review, procurement and implementation of equipment, supplies, materials and staffing: coordinate with the weather service to ensure the operation has the most accurate and timely information. Ensure quality and timely training and communication for managers, supervisors, drivers, patrol, route monitors and coordinators.
  • Develop, maintain and update standard operating procedures for all aspects of the operation.
  • Foster, promote and expect professionalism, customer service, efficiency, and standard operating procedures for consistent application of best management practices.
  • Direct the Parking Services enterprise Transportation Fund operation by providing leadership and counsel for the management team; serve as the liaison to the elected officials regarding parking matters and regulations.
  • Partner with the Budget office, DPW budget staff  and Section Managers to ensure a cooperative, collaborative and timely development and submittal of the Operation budget.
  • Develop and ensure the implementation of polices and procedures; review outcomes to ensure effective and efficient services to customers.
  • Direct staff in all matters, including those involving personnel, budgeting, and public relations.
  • Coach, support, and assess managers to help them achieve organizational and professional improvement goals.
  • Serve as the Department’s representative at Common Council Committee meetings and with internal and external organizations. 
  • Champion a diverse and inclusive work culture and regularly monitor the organization for opportunities to provide an environment of clarity and trust.
  • Identify and implement measures of accountability, innovation, efficiency and success.
  • Create and promote leadership development and succession planning opportunities.   

We welcome qualified individuals with disabilities who are interested in employment and will make reasonable accommodations during the hiring process in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, as amended by the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008.

Conditions of Employment

  • Must be able to work long hours for extended periods of time.
  • Must be able to be present and available throughout the winter season to lead and manage the City of Milwaukee snow and ice control efforts.

Minimum Requirements

  1. Bachelor’s degree in public administration, environmental studies, economics, engineering or a related field from an accredited college or university.
  2. Five years of management-level experience in fleet, sanitation, forestry, parking services or other related organizational work unit. Management experience must include strategic planning, the development of programming and budgets, supervision of staff and the creation and implementation of policies and procedures.
  3. Valid driver's license at time of appointment and throughout employment.

Equivalent combinations of education and professional experience will be considered.

IMPORTANT NOTE: College transcripts are required and must be received by the application period closing date. Transcripts should be emailed to Human Resources Representative, Nola Nelson at nnelson@milwaukee.gov- Student/unofficial copies are acceptable; however, your transcript must be legible and include your college/university name, your name, the degree completed (if applicable) and the date completed.

Desirable Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in public administration, environmental studies, economics or a closely related field from an accredited college or university.

Knowledges, Skills, Abilities & Other Characteristics

  • Knowledge of federal and state regulatory requirements related to clean air, waterways, garbage landfills operations and recycling operations.
  • Thorough knowledge and understanding of snow and ice control operations to maintain safe and passable streets in a manner consistent with the regulations of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
  • Ability to learn and apply the City Service Commission rules, City policies and procedures, organizational and political structure of the City of Milwaukee.
  • Ability to learn and apply City of Milwaukee City Ordinances and State Statues and regulations in order to protect surface water ways and the environment. 
  • Ability to lead and facilitate effective meetings, develop action plans, monitor progress and ensure timely implementation of desired outcomes.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Ability to set policies and procedures to maintain a high quality and effective, professional work culture of the organization that meets the needs of elected officials and residents, business and visitors to the City of Milwaukee.
  • Ability to manage under pressure and through emergency operations and conditions to lead the organization for the safety and wellbeing of the community at large.
  • Committed professional dedicated to complete integrity.
  • Ability to communicate effectively and with diplomacy with staff, CPW, elected officials, the Mayor’s office, etc., during normal business and under stressful or emergency conditions. 
  • Ability to handle criticism and use feedback for continual process improvement.
  • Ability to respond to emergency conditions and events in a calm, collected manner and report quickly to lead the operation.
  • Ability to foster an environment of inclusion wherein all employees are treated respectfully, are valued for their strengths, and feel that they can safely express themselves.

Current Salary

The current salary range (1OX) is $110,689-$147,336 annually, and the resident incentive salary range for City of Milwaukee residents is $114,009-$147,336. Appointment above the minimum is possible based upon level of experience and other qualifications and is subject to approval.

The City of Milwaukee provides a comprehensive benefit program that includes the following:

  • Defined Benefit Pension Plan
  • 457 Deferred Compensation Plan
  • Health and Dental Insurance
  • Comprehensive Wellness Program
  • Onsite Clinic Services
  • Onsite Employee Assistance Program
  • Alternative Work Schedules
  • Long Term Disability Insurance
  • Group Life Insurance
  • Tuition Benefits
  • Paid Vacation
  • 11 Paid Holidays
  • Paid Sick Leave and other paid leaves
  • Flexible Spending Arrangement
  • Commuter Value Pass

For full details of the benefits offered by the City of Milwaukee, please visit https://city.milwaukee.gov/der/benefits.

Selection Process

Screening for this position will be based on an evaluation of each applicant’s education, experience, and professional accomplishments, which should be detailed in a cover letter, and resume. Additionally, academic transcripts are required by the application deadline. Please submit a resume, cover letter and academic transcripts via email to nnelson@milwaukee.gov

  • Please indicate “Operations Division Director” in the subject line.
  • Questions relative to the selection process may be directed to Nola Nelson at 414.286.5066 or via email at nnelson@milwaukee.gov.
  • The City of Milwaukee reserves the right to invite only the most qualified applicants to participate in the selection process.


The City of Milwaukee values and encourages diversity and is an equal opportunity employer.