Dive Safety Officer

Organization: Oregon Coast Aquarium (AZA Member)
Location: Newport , Oregon, United States
Job or Internship: Job

POSITION TITLE: Dive Safety Officer

REPORTS TO: Director of Husbandry

JOB SUMMARY: Under the general direction of the Director of Husbandry, the Dive Safety Officer modifies, develops, oversees, and enforces dive safety policies, following AAUS guidelines for all divers and dive activities under the auspices of the Aquarium. The Dive Safety Officer implements policies and procedures under the direction of the dive control board.


1. TEAMWORK: Cooperation, adaptability, flexibility, communication, dependability, supports team goals.

 Works collaboratively with the Public Programs Group to establish goals.

 Works collaboratively with all Aquarium departments.

 Establishes and maintains open communications to enhance team effort.

 Demonstrates flexibility in response to unexpected changes in work volume, emergencies, staffing and scheduling.

 Fulfills work schedule and commitments.

 Helps co-workers when assistance is requested and asks other co-workers for assistance when needed.

 Puts the good of the Aquarium before the good of the department.

2. RESPECT AND CARING: Compassion, customer relations, professional behavior, confidentiality, valuing diversity.

 Uses interpersonal skills, which convey a positive and supportive attitude.

 Uses discretion in discussions related to staffing or personal concerns.

 Gives constructive feedback in a non-blaming, positive and confidential manner.

 Makes continuous effort to identify opportunities to meet/exceed customer needs and expectations.

 Demonstrates commitment to understanding and valuing individual differences and fosters environment of acceptance, fairness and mutual respect.

 Establish a vision whereby the needs of customers, other employees, volunteers, Aquarium members, donors, vendors, and members of the community are handled by Aquarium employees in an informative, courteous and respectful manner.

3. EFFECTIVE USE OF RESOURCES: Effective use of time, people and supplies.

 Promotes and supports the effective use of people’s talents.

 Set priorities and schedules work to make the most efficient use of time and personnel.

 Maintains a clean work environment.

 Promotes cost effectiveness through the proper use and conservation of supplies and equipment.

 Identifies and shares cost saving measures.

4. SAFE WORK HABITS: Safe and attentive work practices.

 Works in a safe manner.

 Maintains a safe work environment.

 Reports needed repairs or potential hazards to the appropriate department as soon as identified.

 Reports all on-the-job injuries and seeks medical attention as appropriate.

 Stays current on emergency/crisis management procedures.

5. INITIATIVE: Self-motivation, takes on project willingly, acts on opportunities to improve, and contributes new ideas.

 Supports improvement and innovation in the workplace.

 Demonstrates awareness of and supports Oregon Coast Aquarium departmental and operating goals through daily work activities.

 Strives continually for quality improvement.

 Takes the initiative to identify problems and offer potential solutions.

 Pursues one’s own professional development and contributes to the professional growth of others.


1. Works toward the success of the Oregon Coast Aquarium as a whole while upholding the Aquariums core values, strategic pathways, mission and vision.

Regularly communicates and demonstrates through actions the norms, values and vision of the organization.

Function effectively with others to achieve Aquarium goals.

2. Ensures that internal and external customer expectations are met or exceeded through practices that use continuous quality improvement principles.

Consistently projects a customer service focus.

• Fosters awareness of customer expectations.

• Models responsiveness to customer requests.

• Resolves complaints to the customer’s satisfaction.

Continuously applies quality improvement principles.

• Demonstrates personal commitment to quality improvement.

• Builds quality improvement processes into departmental procedures.

3. Plans strategically and manages resources to produce results consistent with Aquarium plans and goals.

Develops and manages an effective plan within your area that supports for the future direction of the Aquarium.

Achieve results within budgetary parameters.

4. Builds and maintains a work environment that reflects a positive atmosphere, high employee satisfaction and competence and strong evidence of teamwork.

Makes high quality staffing decisions and effectively delegates work appropriate to staff capabilities.

Encourages successful team development by actively involving staff in planning, decision making and solving team conflicts.

Creates an environment in which diversity is encouraged and honored.

Understands, interprets and consistently applies Oregon Coast Aquarium policies and procedures.

Recognize employees for their positive contributions and accomplishments.

5. Communicates effectively.

Establishes and communicates clear expectations.

Practices open, clear, consistent communication.

Demonstrate effective listening.

Provide feedback in a constructive manner.

6. Takes responsibility for development of self and others.

Continues own education to strengthen knowledge to attain current and future goals. Assists staff in developing their skills and abilities.


1. Recommends programs and policies to the Director of Husbandry to ensure that the operations assigned are managed effectively and reflect current trends in dive safety and volunteer management. Those recommendations are reviewed and prioritized by the Director of Husbandryand forwarded to the Aquarium’s Senior Management.

2. Monitors and evaluates all Aquarium diving activities, both in-house and open water, to ensure compliance with the Aquarium’s Dive Safety Manual.

3. Provides direct supervision of on-site Aquarium dives.

4. Assures that all Aquarium divers are properly certified and that they comply with diving safety standards as determined by the DCB.

5. Maintains a strong knowledge base of diving industry standards, diving physiology, and diving equipment and techniques in order to assure Aquarium compliance with all relevant safety standards.

6. Provides for and supervises the maintenance of unobstructed and clean working dive areas.

7. Manages staff diving functions. Trains and supervises Aquarium divers in the following areas: exhibit maintenance, surface supplied diving and dive tending, open water diving for collection activities, dive cylinder filling, diving safety, and emergency procedures.

8. Assist with Volunteer Services to recruit and select volunteer divers.

9. Trains volunteer divers in the following areas: exhibit maintenance, surface supplied diving and dive tending, diving safety, and emergency procedures

10. Edits and updates the Aquarium Diving Manual. Maintains updated materials and manuals relevant to the Aquarium dive program. Creates forms required for diving programs, equipment maintenance, diver management. Administers all procedures set forth in the Diving Manual.

11. Serves as the Aquarium’s representative to outside agencies involved in diving safety and regulations, including, but not limited to the American Academy of Underwater Sciences, the Divers Alert Network, and similar agencies.

12. Provides specialized diver training to staff and volunteer divers in order to enhance diver safety capabilities such as diver rescue and advanced diving.

13. Conducts CPR, rescue, oxygen first aid and First Aid training. Coordinates physical examinations and dive equipment inspections for Aquarium diver certifications.

14. Assists Curators with exhibit maintenance schedules .

15. Interfaces with other departmental representatives on diving-related activities.

16. Maintains and repairs SCUBA and diving related equipment and updates the appropriate equipment logs concerning this maintenance and repairs.

17. Ensures proper care and maintenance of the SCUBA air compressor and air fill station. Conducts breathing air analysis tests to ensure quality and purity of compressed air supplied to divers.

18. Prepares the annual operating budget for the diving program and submits to the Director of Husbandry for review and approval. Reviews and requests requisitions for supplies and services for the area within the approved budget. Maintains spending within monthly and yearly budget parameters.

19. Provides for, reviewing as appropriate, information for presentations to (and tours for) visitors, media and staff concerning diving and related activities.

20. Prepares written and oral reports as needed.

21. Works in consort with all departments and staff to promote and uphold the approved diving operations for the Aquarium.

22. Performs other duties as assigned.

The above accountabilities represent work performed by this position and is not all-inclusive. The omission of a specific accountability will not preclude it from the position if the work is similar, related or a logical extension of the position.


Supervisor to the volunteer divers and staff divers in all aspects of diving and diving safety.


A degree in biology or zoology related field is preferred. Incumbent must have experience working with captive aquatic animals or fisheries biology. Life experience may be substituted.

Nationally recognized certification as an active Open Water SCUBA Instructor, as well as CPR, First Aid, Oxygen First Aid provider and water rescue is required. A minimum of 500 open water dives, including 60 dives in a captive marine animal or aquarium environment, are required. Incumbent must be or be able to become AAUS (American Academy of Underwater Sciences) scientific diver within six months of hire; this status must be maintained throughout employment with the Aquarium. Cold water diving experience is desirable. Knowledge of and demonstrated skills in handling small boats are required

Knowledge of and ability to use computers and standard, commonly accepted computer programs is required. The ability to work under limited supervision, both independently and in a team environment is required.

The incumbent must be able to gain and hold a valid Oregon driver’s license; truck or van experience is desirable.