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Job Posting
The Cultural and Diversity Coordinator conducts outreach to foster strong relationships with underserved populations in South Dakota.
Open until filled.

Position Summary

The South Dakota Science and Technology Authority (SDSTA) owns and operates the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF). The Coordinator works closely alongside the departments within Outreach and Culture to support the incorporation of cultural and Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA) best practices into SDSTA’s public outreach and events. The Coordinator also supports Human Resources (HR) in their efforts to establish and maintain a diverse workforce.

The Cultural and Diversity Coordinator, in conjunction with the IDEA Program Lead, also conducts outreach to foster strong relationships with underserved populations in South Dakota, including the nine Tribal Nations sharing a geography with the state of South Dakota and the region surrounding SURF. This includes regular outreach and consultation with the tribes of the region to ensure SURF is undertaking its work in a manner that is aligned with the cultural requirements of the American Indian tribes who consider the Black Hills sacred.

Line of Authority

The Cultural and Diversity Coordinator reports directly to the Director of Outreach and Culture.

Functional Responsibilities

  • Develops mutually beneficial relationships and partnerships with community organizations with a shared interest in diversity initiatives.
  • Assist in improving engagement with diverse populations in South Dakota through regular outreach and communication.
  • Supports IDEA efforts to promote and establish internal educational opportunities in IDEA topics.
  • Works with the SLHVC to implement programming highlighting the culture, accomplishments, history and present-day actions of underrepresented groups in South Dakota.
  • Supports Education and Outreach, Communications, the Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center and SURF Foundation in establishing relationships with underrepresented local and regional cultural groups.
  • Provides advice and support to the Education and Outreach program on topics related to diversity.
  • Collaborates with HR in inclusion, diversity, equity and access efforts throughout the employee experience.
  • Conducts outreach efforts to build and maintain relationships with the nine Tribal Nations sharing a geography with South Dakota and other underrepresented local and regional cultural groups.
  • Work alongside the IDEA Program Lead to ensure any federal consultation requirements with the region’s Tribal Nations are followed.
  • Advances the development and implementation of plans and programs for the inclusion of underrepresented cultures in SURF’s development and operations.
  • Assists in the envisioning, development, fundraising, creation and use of the ethnobotanical garden.


The Cultural and Diversity Coordinator has the following accountabilities:

  • To the SDSTA staff for promoting an inclusive culture of collaboration and mutual respect. 
  • To the Director of Outreach and Culture for efforts to create and establish positive working relationships with underrepresented groups in South Dakota.


The Cultural and Diversity Coordinator has the following authorities:

  • To develop and facilitate diversity programs for staff.
  • To stop work upon recognition of a condition that presents imminent danger to the health and safety of staff, the public or the environment.



  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field supportive of the aforementioned functional responsibilities.



  • N/A.


  • Adaptability—Ability to effectively adjust to changing priorities and demands; must be able to work independently to solve problems and keep management informed of progress and status. Ability to accept criticism and to adjust plans as appropriate.
  • Collaboration—Commitment to work with constituent groups including staff, board members, scientists, partner institutions and community groups.
  • Communication—Communicates effectively and clearly with a wide range of audiences in both written and oral form. Superior writing and speaking skills.
  • Decision-making—Ability to assess situations, evaluate options, choose the most appropriate course of action and effectively communicate decisions to staff.
  • Influence—Ability to present and gain support for ideas, projects and solutions.
  • Integrity—Unquestioned ability to maintain confidential information.
  • Problem-solving—Demonstrated ability to research and analyze complex information and communicate it effectively and accurately.
  • Mentoring—Ability to advise and instruct staff in the development of their skills to assist in furthering their abilities as members of the team.
  • Organization—Ability to prioritize tasks, manage time and meet deadlines; coordination of priorities for department staff.
  • Relationship Building—Establishes rapport with a variety of constituents and maintains effective work relationships with the scientific and education communities as well as local, national and international media outlets. 
  • Safety—Ability to learn, understand and comply with SDSTA’s safety program. Willing to accept and enforce strict safety practices.
  • Team Building—Ability to build and lead a cohesive team that is committed to a common goal; provides focus and leadership to instill a strong team environment to successfully lead the department.
  • Work independently—Demonstrated ability to work independently.

Working Requirements

  • Proof of a valid driver’s license is required.
  • Comply with SDSTA’s safety program.
  • Act in accordance with SDSTA’s core values: Safety Focused, Care for Others, Professionalism and Being a Team Player.
  • Perform work in a typical office environment with prolonged periods of sitting at a desk and working on a computer.
  • Work in all types of environmental conditions (heat, humidity, wet, cold).
  • Perform work in the SURF underground environment at depths up to 5000 feet.
  • Perform limited physical labor and light lifting including walking up and down flights of stairs.
  • Work evenings and weekends as required.

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.