Planner - Associate or Assistant

Thurston Regional Planning Council (TRPC) is seeking a planner at either the Associate or Assistant level to work on a variety of local and regional projects related to transportation, land use, and environmental planning. Under general supervision of the Planning Manager, tasks may include technical analysis and research, community outreach, and development of plans and reports, with the level of responsibility dependent on placement in the Planner series.  

TRPC believes in fostering a supportive work environment for staff, which values diverse points of view, inclusion, belonging, and autonomy.  We are dedicated in developing a diverse workforce who value their work and are committed to TRPC’s mission and core values. For more information visit or phone (360) 956-7575. This position will remain open until filled. Applicants are encouraged to submit their application by October 27, 2023. 

Please specify the position title, Assistant or Associate Planner, you are applying for in your application materials.


TRPC is a Regional Transportation Planning Organization and Metropolitan Planning Organization governed by a 23-member intergovernmental board. Located in Olympia, Washington, TRPC is approximately 60 miles south of Seattle and 120 miles north of Portland, Oregon. Residents of the region enjoy a high quality of life and reasonable cost of living amid beautiful natural surroundings. With a current county-wide population of around 303,400, we are one of the fastest growing regions in Washington, making our area an exciting place for regional planning. 


We encourage potential applicants to apply even though they may not satisfy every qualification listed. TRPC is dedicated in finding the right candidate for the job. If you meet the minimum requirements and have a real interest in planning, please submit your application.     

The ideal candidate will have: 

  • Knowledge of planning practices, regulations, and principles  
  • Knowledge of research methods and practices
  • Strong written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills
  • Experience in public engagement working with multiple partners and diverse stakeholders
  • Ability to collaborate with team members and adaptable to change
  • Ability to problem solve and prioritize workload
  • A strong desire to serve the public interest

Additionally, for the Associate Planner level, the ideal candidate will have:

  • Demonstrated project management experience
  • Experience working directly with committees, boards, and/or councils


For the position of Assistant Planner, the candidate will have at a minimum:

  • A bachelor’s degree in planning, public administration, environmental studies, geography, political science, transportation, or a closely related field
  • One to three years of experience in planning  

For the position of Associate Planner, the candidate will have at a minimum:

  • A bachelor’s degree in planning, public administration, environmental studies, geography, political science, transportation, or a closely related field
  • Three or more years of experience in planning
  • One or more years of project management experience


  • Any demonstrated combination of experience and education, which provides the applicant with the required knowledge and abilities.


The successful candidate will work within our team structure to manage and support a variety of projects related to regional land use and transportation planning. Examples include:

  • Multimodal (bike, pedestrian, rail, transit) planning
  • Regional transportation safety and freight planning
  • Flood and natural hazard planning

A successful candidate could expect to:

  • Work under minimal supervision 
  • Serve as a working project manager and/or working technical specialist. Candidates hired at the Assistant Planner level would support projects or manage non-complex projects.
  • Work within a team environment
  • Juggle multiple tasks and competing deadlines
  • Communicate and interact with staff at public, private, and non-profit organizations and the public 


Salary range and placement for the Assistant/Associate Planner position will depend on qualifications.

  • Associate Planner salary range $6,161 – $7,695 
  • Assistant Planner salary range $5,446 - $6,801


TRPC offers a full benefits package which includes: 

  • Work-Life Balance: supports flexible work schedules, telecommuting, membership to Employee Assistance Program     
  • Retirement: employees are participants in the Washington State PERS system and Deferred Compensation Plan
  • Health Insurance: employer paid health insurance for individuals and generous coverage for dependents through Washington State’s Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB)
  • Paid Leave: a minimum of 12 hours per month, 11 paid holidays, including 1 floating holiday 


Find full application information and materials on the agency’s website at, or phone Thurston Regional Planning Council at (360) 956-7575. Email application materials to Thurston Regional Planning Council is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages diversity throughout the organization. If special accommodations to apply for this position are needed, please telephone and ask for our ADA Coordinator. For TDD users, please use the State’s toll-free relay service by calling (800) 833-6388 and ask the operator to dial (360) 956-7575.

To be considered, applicants must submit all the following:

  1. Letter of interest that addresses how your education, experience, knowledge, and abilities make you an ideal candidate for the position.
  2. Resume
  3. Completed TRPC application

During the recruitment process, applicants may make inquiries by e mail to The most qualified applicants will be invited to take part in an interview process.

Reference checks are part of TRPC’s recruitment process, subject to state law.