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Open position at Northwest Horticultural Council

Posted by Bernardita Sallato | December 11, 2018

Technical Issues Manager


The Northwest Horticultural Council (NHC) is a nonprofit trade association, based in Yakima, Washington, that represents the tree fruit (apple, pear, and cherry) industry of Idaho, Oregon, and Washington on federal and international policy and regulatory matters. The tree fruit growers, packers and shippers in our region produce approximately 76 percent of the fresh apples, 88 percent of the fresh pears, and 81 percent of the fresh cherries in the U.S.  Roughly a third of the production is exported each year.  Producers from the Pacific Northwest account for over 90 percent of the U.S. apple and pear exports and 83 percent of U.S. cherry exports.

With a staff of nine, the NHC is an advocacy group that engages with the private sector, academia, government, and nongovernmental bodies.  The technical issues manager will work on all manner of horticultural subjects, including plant pest and disease, research, crop protection, food safety, and other scientific needs requisite for domestic and international trade.  This position is responsible for collecting and communicating technical information under the direction of the NHC president and its vice presidents.  We are looking for an active problem-solver, someone who can work cooperatively on commercially-important projects.


A successful candidate will be an excellent communicator, able to interact with diverse communities and lead or follow depending on the team environment associated with a particular project or initiative.  This position will report to the NHC’s president and will require local and limited national travel.


Duties and Responsibilities

  • Work independently and/or collaboratively with staff, industry, and allied associations.
  • Represent the NHC and its interests in public or private meetings.
  • Work with researchers on projects of interest to safeguard and advance the tree fruit sector.
  • Develop plans, write reports, and generate public comments to support industry initiatives.
  • Assist in communicating regulatory requirements to growers, packers, and shippers to avoid noncompliance with governmental regulations in the domestic and international markets.
  • Update and maintain technical information on the NHC website.


Essential Job Requirements:

  • A Master of Science or Bachelor of Science in biology, chemistry, horticulture, or related subject.
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to organize and manage multiple projects simultaneously with attention to detail while responding to unforeseen circumstances and deadlines.
  • Five or more years of post-university work experience.
  • A drive to learn on the job and advocate for the tree fruit industry.


Preferred Job Requirements:

  • Experience with specialty crop horticultural practices, preferably with tree fruit.
  • Practical knowledge of pre-and postharvest physiology, entomology, plant pathology, Integrated Pest Management, and food safety practices for tree fruit is highly desirable.
  • Experience working with federal and state regulatory agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture or Washington State Department of Agriculture.
  • A strong understanding of pesticide practices including those involving workers/applicators and other pesticide label requirements.
  • Grant, research, or technical writing experience.


Interested candidates should submit letters of application to the NHC at 105 S. 18th Street, Suite 105, Yakima, WA, 98901 or to  Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.  Information on the Northwest Horticultural Council is available at

More information at:


Washington State University