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Data Engineer

First Street Foundation

First Street Foundation

Software Engineering, Data Science
Brooklyn, NY, USA
Posted on Friday, May 12, 2023

If you’re looking to make an impact on climate change, look no further.

Climate-based disasters already cost the US billions in property damage each year and impact the quality of life of many Americans. Without the right policies and investments to mitigate and adapt to climate change these problems will only get worse.

Our mission at First Street Foundation is to make climate risk data accessible, easy to understand and actionable for individuals, governments, and industry.

First Street started seven years ago working with the world’s leading climate scientists to create groundbreaking, climate-adjusted models for Flood, Wildfire, Extreme Heat, and Hurricane Wind. Our models are sensitive down to the local property and building structure.

Our models are used by federal government agencies like Fannie Mae, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the U.S. Departments of Treasury, the Department of Commerce, and others in their assessment of climate risk to the U.S. economy.

While we work with the top federal agencies and banks, we also ensure every American homeowner, home buyer, real estate agent, business, and community has access to these models through Risk Factor (riskfactor.com) and integrations with sites like Redfin and Realtor.com.

As a non-profit, we have a unique ability to always put our mission first. To fund our mission we’ve begun licensing our data to the government, institutions, companies, and individuals with amazing success.

The Opportunity

We have started a revolution in climate risk data, we have proven product market fit, and we have millions in ARR while still staying true to our non-profit climate mission. We are trailblazing a path to create a new philanthropic model that moves away from donors and is entirely self-sustaining ensuring predictable revenue and continued growth and impact. It is with this foundation that we want to supercharge growth. To do this, we are looking for an expert Data Engineer to join our team.

The Role

The successful candidate will be someone who deeply cares about the environment, loves information technology, and appreciates the importance of data for the success of the First Street mission. They will lead the ingestion of climate risk and ancillary data from First Street modeling and data partners, develop data pipelines, manage geospatial databases, calculate applicable statistics, implement Quality Assurance and Quality Control processes, utilize geographical imagery, and ensure that the Data Team’s databases and pipelines are coordinated and synchronized with the Software Engineering Team’s databases, APIs, and web services. This individual will be responsible for developing data operations across the Data Team, and through their expertise and leadership generally enabling all members of the Data Team to be successful in their roles.

What’s in it for you?

For your hard work you will be rewarded with a competitive salary, bonuses based on company growth goals, generous paid time off, a stipend to deck out your home workstation and the opportunity to work for the most trafficked climate risk website in the country.

Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Provide technical leadership in the processing, analysis, and interpretation of geospatial observations and modeling data.
  • Process large volumes of flood and wildfire risk prediction data to improve risk assessment quality and accuracy.
  • Plan, execute and direct UNIX-based workflows on local and cloud-based clusters, using GDAL, PostgreSQL, Python, QGIS, Matlab, and R.
  • Analyze raster and vector data at scale to improve model accuracy, identify quality control issues, and develop suggested remedies for identified issues.
  • Perform statistical analysis to validate hazard model predictions and assess model uncertainties.
  • Implement quality assurance checks on the climate risk data and derived statistics
  • Provide technical leadership on data operations, geospatial programming, databases and statistics, including but not limited to devising risk score methodologies and metrics, community risk assessments, property vulnerability measures, and novel approaches to the derivation of new First Street climate risk information products.

Experience / Competencies

  • Data operations: Expertise with the design, maintenance, and use of geospatial databases, such as PostgreSQL
  • GIS knowledge: Expertise with working with spatial data and GIS software such as QGIS
  • Programming: Proficiency with SQL queries to efficiently and reproducibly analyze complex datasets preferred. Additional languages like Python or R also required
  • Strong understanding of probability and statistics as applied to spatial data
  • Expertise using scripted languages to build data pipelines on both local and cloud-based systems
  • Expertise with big data analysis, parallel processing, and batch/spot workflows on cloud platforms including AWS, GCP, and/or Azure
  • Proficiency with source control platforms such as Git
  • A science-based approach with a high degree of concern for reliability, accuracy and reproducibility
  • Experience in GIS and/or geospatial statistical analysis
  • 2+ years of experience
  • Bachelor’s degree; Master’s preferred

Compensation & Benefits

  • Competitive salary commensurate with experience
  • Bi-annual bonus of up to 20% of salary
  • Medical, dental and vision plans
  • Voluntary 401K plan and life insurance
  • Generous paid time off, holidays and sick leave
  • 12 weeks of fully paid parental leave
  • Professional development budget
  • Tech startup environment and a new (dog-friendly) office space filled with cold brew and snacks
  • Working on the world’s biggest issue with other passionate professionals

Our Values

  • Passion: We are driven by our shared goal to fight climate change
  • Inclusion: We believe the best decisions consider many points of view
  • Impact: We only focus on things that move the needle
  • Urgency: We move quickly because the world depends on it
  • Integrity: We use open science and operate transparently
  • Positivity: We are optimistic and enthusiastic in all that we do

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.