County Engineer

New Hanover County
May 16, 2023
230 Government Center Drive, Wilmington, NC
Billing Address
230 Government Center Drive
First Name
Last Name
Phone Number
New Hanover
Closing Date
open until filled


New Hanover County is seeking an experienced, licensed Professional Engineer to serve as County Engineer, providing leadership and direction of the operations and services within the Engineering department. The County Engineer serves as the department head and subject matter expert overseeing projects and activities of the department, compliance with ordinances, and completion of subdivision reviews, capital projects, and shore protection efforts.  The ideal candidate is knowledgeable about the needs and challenges of coastal areas, has demonstrated success in building and maintaining relationships with government leaders and officials, and has the ability to exercise sound judgment in analyzing situations and making decisions in a collaborative and transparent environment.

Duties include providing leadership and expertise to staff, presenting project proposals for review by the Board of County Commissioners, developing and coordinating projects to execute decisions made by the Board of Commissioners, developing and overseeing department and project budgets to effectively monitor expenditures and the availability of funds, ensuring projects meet county needs and specifications, serving a liaison to Cape Fear Public Utility Authority, working with developers to ensure water and sewer availability and capacity levels, overseeing department personnel management, and addressing concerns and inquiries of the public regarding department activities.  Hours are 8AM-5PM weekdays; must be available for evening meetings, special events, and during emergency situations.  

Operating with a $5M budget, the Engineering Department provides a range of engineering, shore protection, and project management services, both to the community and to other county departments. The Engineering department’s services include administration and implementation of the Stormwater and Drainage Ordinance, as well as the Sedimentation and Erosion Control Ordinance. The department also manages the Stormwater Services Program, which began in 2020, for the purpose of helping to ensure the continued upkeep of the stormwater management system throughout the unincorporated areas of the county, and relieving property owners of the responsibility of maintaining and cleaning ditches and pipes on their property.

As a local program office of the state, the department issues and enforces Sedimentation and Erosion Control Permits for all non-governmental land-disturbing activities within New Hanover County and the City of Wilmington and is also responsible for the maintenance of abandoned cemeteries within New Hanover County.  

New Hanover County government and this department are progressive leaders who are excited to take on new projects that benefit our community and take advantage of opportunities to better our community.  

Recent accomplishments include:

  • Redesigning the Stormwater Design Manual to greatly improve the stormwater permitting process to accompany the newly revised and approved Stormwater Ordinance.
  • Completing Coastal Storm Damage Reduction projects at Carolina Beach and Kure Beach utilizing an offshore borrow area for the first time for both projects.
  • Establishing procedures for electronic submission of permit documentation and completion of scanning of existing files into an approved digitized format.
  • Completion of 157 pipe replacement and grade setting stormwater projects to remove  vegetation and sediment and ensure flowing water in open channels.  Projects included 38.48 miles of maintenance work and 2,594 linear feet of pipe replacement.
  • Completing construction of four Stormwater Services capital projects and planning/design for five additional capital projects with the goal of improving drainage in targeted areas. 
  • Completion of three large scale capital projects associated with the Hurricane Florence Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) grant, where streambank stabilization and large pipe replacement was performed in identified areas.
  • Received grant funding of $263,000 for vegetation and sediment removal under the Streamflow Rehabilitation Assistance Program (StRAP) under the USDA, supplementing the county’s fee based stormwater services work.
  • Received $400,000 in grant funding from the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality Local Assistance for Stormwater Infrastructure Investments Program for stormwater planning projects in identified areas.
  • Designed a major culvert crossing under William Louis Drive to assist the residents with getting the road turned over to NCDOT.  The design and permitting of the culvert crossing were done by engineers within the Engineering Department and the Stormwater Services crews are currently completing the installation.


The current salary range for this position is $96,378 - $163,843.

The hiring range for this position is $96,378 - $140,000 plus a competitive benefits package. Salary is negotiable within the hiring range, depending on qualifications.  

New Hanover County offers:

  • Employer paid 401k contributions;
  • Retirement plan through the NC Retirement system;
  • Flex time availability, depending on your position;
  • Paid sick and personal leave + 13 paid holidays per year;
  • Paid parental leave;
  • Paid community services leave to give back to our community;
  • Education leave to obtain a degree within your line of work; 
  • Medical, dental, and vision insurance + many other insurance options; 
  • Onsite, employer-paid health and wellness center;
  • Professional development trainings & leadership initiatives; 
  • Opportunities to make a difference in your community;
  • And so much more!

Please check out our careers page at for more information on why New Hanover County is a great place to work.  


Required Education and Experience:
Bachelor’s Degree in a related Engineering field and seven (7) years of progressively responsible engineering experience, including three (3) years of management level experience; or an equivalent combination of education and experience sufficient to successfully perform the essential duties of the job such as those listed above.  

Must have valid driver's license and good driving record.  Must be willing to maintain residence in New Hanover County within 6 months.

Required Licenses and Certifications:

  • Valid NC Driver's License.
  • Valid Professional Engineer (PE) license
  • North Carolina Professional Surveyor’s License preferred

Special Requirements

Must obtain residency in New Hanover County within 6 months of employment.


How to Apply

A completed application must be submitted and received through the New Hanover County website.  Click here for a direct link to apply for this position.  Applicants are required to thoroughly complete this on-line application and are encouraged to attach a cover letter and resume in the "attachments" section.  

Deadline to Apply: This position is open until filled; however, priority consideration will be given to applications received through Thursday, May 18, 2023.

About New Hanover County 
At fewer than 200 square miles, New Hanover is the 2nd smallest of the 100 North Carolina counties, but one of the most densely populated.   With 235,000 residents, it has become the center of rapid urbanization in the southeast region of North Carolina.  In addition to being a great place to live, New Hanover County is a great place to do business.    New Hanover County is committed to progressive public policy, superior service, courteous contact, judicious exercise of authority, and sound fiscal management to meet the needs and concerns of our citizens today and tomorrow.

New Hanover County operates under a governing board/manager form of government where policy setting is the responsibility of the Board and policy execution is the responsibility of the Board appointed County Manager.  To serve the citizens of this progressive, regional urban center, the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners adopted a county-wide strategic plan, where its backdrop is framed by these vision and mission statements and a set of shared values that govern how the Board and staff make decisions. These shared values are professionalism, integrity, innovation, equity, stewardship, and accountability.

New Hanover County is dedicated to the recruitment and recognition of a talented and diverse workforce that is committed to public service. Our shared values guide the way we conduct ourselves and deliver services to our customers.  Supported by the work of our Office of Diversity and Equity, New Hanover County celebrates diversity in our employees’ backgrounds, beliefs, identities, and abilities, while supporting growth opportunities for all. Our talented team has a passion for providing care and services that effect change on the everyday lives of the residents they encounter. The differences that unite us are a reflection of the community we serve. If this sounds like an organization that models the values you uphold, we invite you to join our team at New Hanover County.