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Open until filled. Provides expertise, leadership and training in anticipation, recognition, evaluation, and control of health/safety hazards and related compliance.

Open until filled.

Position Summary

The Senior Safety Specialist provides expertise, leadership and training in anticipation, recognition, evaluation, and control of health/safety hazards and related compliance at the Sanford Underground Research Facility.  The ideal candidate will have 10+ years of verifiable experience in providing safety leadership, with 5+ years of underground mining/construction and 5+ years of surface construction experience (or a reasonable facsimile).

The Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF), is located in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota.  Our team of highly skilled professionals provide the support for project construction, safety and training services, underground Mine maintenance and construction and a host of other activities that support State, National & International Science projects.

Functional Responsibilities (include but are not limited to)

  • Provides expertise and leadership in anticipation, recognition, evaluation, and control of health/safety hazards and related compliance at the site
  • Implements the Integrated Safety Management program
  • Works closely with operations and research groups to identify risks and proactively develops/implements control methodology for these risks
  • Provides Environment Health & Safety (EHS) training to employees and visitors
  • Actively participates in the H&S Assessment process and continual improvement
  • Implements and maintains safety policies/procedures at the facilities and facilitates the site's safety program driving continuous improvement
  • Serves as the technical expert with respect to the site's efforts in executing the EH&S Work Permit process including: energy control, confined space, hotwork, excavations, fall protection, lockout/tagout, and other safe work practices
  • Monitors and audits field related activities to ensure H&S programs are being adhered to
  • Provides field H&S support to underground operations
  • Leads and/or participates in H&S related training and knowledge sharing meetings
  • Facilitates incident investigations and reports
  • Manages worker’s compensation case management
  • Understands and effectively applies injury management should an injury occur
  • Applies creative ways to keep safety awareness high across all of the organization
  • Performs other responsibilities associated with this position as may be appropriate

Desired Qualifications

Experience & Skills

  • 10 plus years of progressive safety experience with strong emphasis in OSHA, MSHA, federal, state, and local regulations
  • Experience in mine and/or research facility such as DOE National Labs
  • Strong interpersonal and organizational skills
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Attention to detail and ability to prioritize tasks
  • Critical thinking skills and good judgment
  • Able to work independently to plan, create and implement safety programs and processes
  • Certified Mine Safety Professional (CMSP)
  • Certified Safety Professional (CSP) or Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) certifications
  • Process Safety Management element development and implementation support
  • Previous DOE lab experience 
  • Participation in OSHA VPP or similar programs
  • Construction safety
  • Underground (mining) operations


  • Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, Health and Safety field, or related degree


  • Attention to Detail - Ability to pay careful attention to details and complete tasks in an accurate, complete, and timely manner
  • Organization - Ability to prioritize tasks, manage time, keep order, and coordinate a variety of activities
  • Communication - Ability to convey information (in writing and orally) in a clear, understandable manner
  • Decision Making - Ability to assess situations, evaluate options, and choose most appropriate course of action
  • Initiative - Ability to persist despite difficult conditions and to make suggestions for improvements
  • Adaptability - Ability to effectively adjust to changing priorities and demands
  • Integrity -  Ability to maintain confidential information
  • Customer Service – Ability to interact courteously with customers and assess and address their needs
  • Motivation – Ability and strong desire to learn
  • Safety - Ability to learn, understand, and comply with the Sanford Laboratory's safety programs

Physical Requirements
Candidate must be able to complete the physical demands of the job, including but not limited to lifting, pulling, pushing and/or carrying up to 50 pounds, unassisted, on a regular basis; climbing into confined spaces; manipulating and handling objects: reaching, grasping, twisting, turning and manipulating equipment and tools within confined spaces, as well as walking, bending, stooping, sitting, standing or squatting for extended periods of time and ability to work at heights.

Work Requirements

Although the primary working environment will be in an office setting, successful applicant will be required at times to: 

  • Negotiate in, on and around underground facilities
  • Work in all types of conditions (heat, humidity, wet, cold)
  • Work in a shaft environment where depths reach 5000’
  • Work from ladders, scaffolding, and in confined places
  • Work underground
  • Working other than normal business hours may be required periodically
  • Provide proof of a valid driver’s license

The South Dakota Science & Technology Authority (SDSTA) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer committed to the development of a diverse workforce. Applicants are invited to self-identify as an individual with a disability or as a protected veteran. Forms are available on the website or upon request from Human Resources.