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Ocean Modeling Programmer

Closing Date: Open until filled.

The Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission’s (CRITFC) Coastal Margin Observation and Prediction (CMOP) program is seeking a full-time experienced python/linux programmer/modeler to support continued development of SCHISM models for the Columbia River Basin (river, estuary and coastal ocean) and for the Pacific Ocean Basin. This position will work with an experienced SCHISM modeler and fish scientists and managers to integrate numerical hydrodynamic modeling into conservation and management programs for critical fish species and stocks in the Columbia River, focusing on Upper Columbia summer and fall chinook and Snake River fall chinook, but including other salmonid species, lamprey, and sturgeon. Work may include developing modeling frameworks, acquiring and processing model inputs, and running and processing SCHISM simulations that incorporate high resolution wetland modeling, water control structures, and aquatic vegetation modeling into the existing CMOP SCHISM model and continue development of individual based modeling of juvenile salmon. This position may also participate in production of peer reviewed articles, technical reports, and grant proposals.

Position Details

  • Department: Watershed Department
  • Classification: Regular, Full-time, Exempt
  • Salary/Wage Range: $78,073- $83,279
  • Location: Portland, Oregon

Essential Job Functions

  1. Prepare, manage and post-process SCHISM simulations, support data analysis, and assist in preparing reports, publications and oral presentations as needed.
  2. Support the operation and advancement of existing hydrodynamic ocean models, such as the CMOP Virtual Columbia River SCHISM model, through appropriate programming.
  3. Assist with numerical modeling, analyses, and assessments to support CRITFC ecological objectives for the protection and recovery of Upper Columbia summer and fall chinook salmon and Snake River fall chinook salmon, other salmonid species, and lamprey and sturgeon.
  4. Acquire and prepare forcings (atmospheric, river discharge, river temperature) representing climate change and hydro-power management and use them as model inputs to support predicting changes in estuary and ocean conditions and resulting changes in salmon habitat.
  5. Assist with conduct modeling using appropriate scientific methods, in collaboration with other regional entities, to estimate changes from improved management of mainstem Columbia River operations to benefit tribal trust resources.

Job Requirements/Qualifications

  1. B.S. degree in oceanography, coastal, ocean, environmental, and civil engineering, or a related geosciences field.
  2. At least four years of direct work experience with numerical modeling, including experience with simulation management. Advanced education may substitute for work experience.
  3. At least four years of direct work experience working with Python and Linux shell script. An advanced degree may substitute for some work experience.

In addition, the following qualifications are desired:

  1. Experience with running and debugging parallelized Fortran codes in a Linux environment.
  2. Experience with Ocean modeling using unstructured mesh models such as SCHISM, FVCOM, or ADCIRC.
  3. Experience with machine learning or spatial statistical analysis techniques.
  4. Familiarity with climate change science and adaptation planning.


  • Supervision Received: Supervised by the CMOP Program Coordinator.
  • Supervision Given: This position has no supervisory responsibilities.

Working Conditions

The work is primarily sedentary with a routine work schedule of Monday-Friday. Work assignments are often multiple and performed, at times, under time constraints. There will be potential to work remotely.

CRITFC Motor Vehicle Policy

The driver operating a CRITFC vehicle or their own private vehicle for business related purposes shall be in possession of a valid, unrestricted current driver’s license, or other operator’s license, as required by law; and be eligible for coverage under CRITFC’s Motor Vehicle insurance policy. Upon request, CRITFC’s Motor Vehicle policy is available to applicants to review the required criteria.

Application Procedure

The Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) requires all new employees be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to the first day of employment.

To apply, submit a completed CRITFC job application form. click here to download

Submit by email to and indicate job title in the subject line. We will confirm receipt of your submission.

Submit by mail:
Attn: Human Resources
700 NE Multnomah Street, Suite 1200
Portland, OR 97232

Hiring preference:
Hiring preference will be given to qualified enrolled members of the four CRITFC member tribes (Warm Springs, Yakama, Umatilla, and Nez Perce) and other federally recognized tribes and Alaskan Natives. Veterans will also be given preference.

CRITFC is committed to building a culturally inclusive community and a work environment that respects and inspires every person. Members of historically marginalized groups including women, people of color, those with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, those who have served in the military, and members of other underrepresented communities are invited to apply.

*Please note: the term “Commission” as used in this description refers to CRITFC’s governing body. CRITFC is a tribal organization that is wholly owned and governed by the Nez Perce Tribe, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, The Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation. As a tribal organization, CRITFC is subject to a unique blend of policies and laws.