Director of Coastal & Waterfront Engineering

Job Locations US-MA-Watertown
Regular Full-Time
Career Stage Type
# of Openings



Role/Responsibilities – Collaborate and partner with New England Market Leaders, Managing Directors, and the New England structures teams to increase our client base and grow coastal engineering services in New England.  

  • Developing and maintaining strong relationships and trust with coastal engineering and resiliency focused staff in New England and throughout VHB.
  • Developing and maintaining in-depth coastal market knowledge with a starting focus on client base within Massachusetts and expanding throughout the rest of VHB’s footprint. It is expected that the Director will bring significant client relationships and VHB’s leaders will work with the director to identify significant cross-selling opportunities.
  • Help drive the Strategic Initiative associated with building a coastal engineering and resiliency practice which will be a significant focus of VHB as part of the 2028 strategic plan.
  • Continue to develop VHB’s expertise in coastal engineering with the goal of creating a coastal engineering practice to deliver on that service. It is assumed that the Director will be responsible for identifying, pursuing and delivering coastal engineering work.  The Director will also play a significant role in identifying and recruiting candidates to build the practice.
  • Manage project teams responsible for delivering coastal engineering projects.
  • Perform project management responsibilities, including project scope development, client management, cost estimation, staff resource identification, implementation oversight, budget tracking, quality control and completion of administrative requirements.

Essential Traits – In order to be successful, it is expected that the Director will exhibit the following traits on a daily and ongoing basis: 

  • Advocates - Promoting others within the organization (their team, region, office, etc.) in a way that rewards others for a job well done and helps grow both the organization and individual careers
  • Open-Minded – Open to new ideas, technologies and work processes that optimize efficiency and better serve our clients
  • Well-Respected – Command respect throughout the organization, which provides a solid foundation to influence the development of the market
  • Forward Thinking and Innovative – Strategic, recognize value in innovative ideas, and passionately implement them
  • Collaborative – Work collaboratively in and outside of VHB to foster unity
  • Influential – Self-aware with leadership abilities that maximize their positive influence on the market
  • Excellent Communicator – Excellent communicator and keep VHBers apprised of critical information
  • Skilled Listener – Listen and empathize with clients and staff to understand and incorporate many different perspectives
  • Technically Proficient – Have a broad array of technical skills and professional mastery providing credibility to lead the coastal engineering services


The success of the Director of Coastal Engineering will be measured by:

  • Client Experience – as measured by client feedback, client retention, repeat assignments, referrals etc.
  • Revenue Growth – as measured by setting and meeting specific business plan targets established by the Strategic Plan and annual business plans
  • Market Visibility and Reputation Building – As measured by sustained team participation in New England professional and industry conferences, publications and speaking engagements; achieving Trusted Advisor status with key clients
  • Team Satisfaction – as measured by New England Managing Directors and the New England Regional Manager.

In the short term a major part of success will be measured by assistance with the development of the strategy and approach to growing the practice (as part of the Strategic Initiative Team in the SP28 Plan) and working collaboratively to drive the vision for the practice both locally and across the footprint.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • BS in civil engineering
  • 15+ years of civil or structural experience required 
  • PE licensure

Billability & Travel Expectations:

In order to be effective in the Director of Coastal Engineering role, the individual needs to have a strong technical focus and maintain a connection to the services performed by VHB with project work.  It is expected that we will work collectively on an appropriate billability target that allows appropriate time for strategy, business development and recruiting.  We expect that billability to mainly come from managing select projects, senior level consulting on project work across the region and quality control work on individual projects.


Additionally, it is anticipated that the Director of Coastal Engineering will be willing and able to travel as needed, primarily within New England, to effectively build a coastal engineering team and collaborate with VHB staff and with key clients.Job Description Banner (June 2023)

We are VHB! We’re an inspired and innovative team of engineers, scientists, planners, and designers who partner with clients in the transportation, real estate, institutional, and energy industries, as well as federal, state, and local governments. Our work helps improve mobility, enhance communities, and contribute to economic vitality. We do this while balancing development and infrastructure needs with stewardship of our environment. 


Our people make us great! VHB provides a differentiating employee experience, which includes: 

  • Diverse and inclusive culture of collaboration and innovation
  • Opportunity to work on complex, transformational projects
  • Community and social responsibility as sustainable stewards
  • Focus on learning, development, and career growth
  • Best-in-class benefits, including flexible, hybrid workplace  

We are consistently rated one of the top AEC firms to work for across our 30+ offices on the East Coast. We’re growing, and we hope you’ll join us! 


VHB is a proud Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Employer. Since our founding, we have intentionally fostered a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion—supported by deep-rooted core values, one of which is diversity. All individuals receive consideration for employment based on their qualifications without discrimination for race/ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, national origin, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, pregnancy, marital status, or any other basis protected by law.




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