Chief Accountant

King County   Seattle, WA   Full-time     Accounting
Posted on September 8, 2022
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King County  is searching for an exceptional leader and accounting professional to serve as the County’s Chief Accountant. The Chief Accountant is responsible for the county’s centralized accounting operations and financial reporting requirements. This position serves as a key advisor to executive-level management and county agencies in setting policies and best practices necessary for accounting practices, internal controls and financial reporting.  The position also serves as the executive-level liaison with external auditors.

ABOUT FINANCE AND BUSINESS OPERATIONS DIVISION (FBOD) The Finance and Business Operations Division (FBOD) of Department of Executive Services (DES) provides exceptional customer value for accounting, procurement, treasury, and small business services. FBOD primarily provides services to other King County agencies and has some services provided directly to businesses and the public. FBOD includes about 170 employees and is comprised of five sections: Financial Management (central accounting); Treasury Operations; Procurement and Payables; Business Development and Contract Compliance; and the Director’s Office team. To learn more about FBOD and the Financial Management Section, please visit the website at:

COMMITMENT TO EQUITY & SOCIAL JUSTICE As the only county in the United States named after one of the most influential civil rights leaders in our nation’s history, Martin Luther King, Jr. County is a vibrant international community with residents that represent countries from around the world. It is a region with increasing diversity that cherishes the artistic and social traditions of many cultures. King County has a deep commitment to equity and social justice and is seeking a Chief Accountant who understands that as public servants, we are the gatekeepers of our county’s policies and services and have a direct impact on whether they are equitable and just in practice. The Chief Accountant will have the opportunity to lead employees and advance King County’s pro-equity agenda for regional change. To learn more about King County’s Equity and Social Justice Initiative please, visit the website at:

ABOUT KING COUNTY (GREATER SEATTLE METRO AREA) King County has a very strong and resilient economy and an environment where people and businesses can thrive. Located on Puget Sound in Washington State, and covering 2,134 square miles, King County is nearly twice as large as the average county in the United States. With more than 2 million people, it also ranks as the 13th most populous county in the nation. King County is comprised of 39 cities and is truly an international destination, with over 100languages spoken in the region and 30 million visitors annually. King County is home to the City of Seattle, suburban cities, small towns, islands, and rural communities, as well as forests, bodies of water, and farmlands. Cities within King County frequently appear on “Best Places to Live” lists and it is #4 on the Forbes “The Best Places for Business and Careers” List. Many King County communities have highly rated schools, nationally recognized restaurants, vibrant recreation, and numerous cultural opportunities. Housing options range from easy-to-access islands, downtown high-rises, and distinct Seattle neighborhoods to suburban developments that boast walkable amenities.

KEY DELIVERABLES AND EXPECTATIONS Reporting directly to the Director of the Finance and Business Operations Division, the Chief Accountant is serves as the County’s primary accounting advisor, manages the Financial Management Section and serves as a member of the Division’s management team. This role also:

  • Oversees the day-to-day operations of approximately 35 employees in the Financial Management Section divided into the following units:   financial accounting; financial systems and support; grants compliance; and accounts receivable.
  • Promotes an organizational culture of learning and continuous improvement (LEAN) and embraces equity and social justice for employees and customers.
  • Directs the development and implementation of vision, strategic goals, multi-year business plans, annual implementation plans and budgets.
  • Leverages the County’s technology systems and business processes to drive operational excellence and standardization, with a focus on results, measurement, and accountability.
  • Ensures compliance with government accounting standards, financial reporting requirement and internal controls, while also providing outstanding customer service.
  • Serves as the County’s subject matter expert for government accounting policies and practices.
  • Serves as the County’s main liaison with external auditors.
  • Models the way for others, especially involving everyday actions and behaviors that are consistent with King County’s values.
Ideal candidates for this role will be an innovator and change agent who is able to lead an agency with a keen focus on continuous improvement and delivering great value to internal and external customers. To be successful, you will have a high level of technical accounting expertise combined with excellent interpersonal, political, and people management skills.  You must also be able to manage with purpose and vision and be a driver for results.

  • Have a deep, progressively responsible background in managing centralized financial accounting and reporting functions in a large government agency or corporation, or any combination of education and experience that clearly demonstrates the ability and skill to perform the scope of job duties of the position. 
  • Have had responsibility for producing and/or auditing timely financial statements and reporting in accordance with GAAP or GASB accounting standards. A licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is highly desirable.  Other certifications such as Certified Public Financial Officer (CPF0), Certified Government Finance Manager (CGFM), or Certified Management Accountant,   would be a plus.
  • Have the ability to develop and implement complex accounting processes and practices within highly customizable ERP systems. (The County uses Oracle EBS)
  • Be a champion for LEAN processes and Equity & Social Justice. 
  • Bring a strong people leadership experience  to multi-faceted organizations, including building cohesive teams and working collaboratively at all levels.
  • Have an exceptional record of successfully managing, developing, and/or implementing strategic initiatives, policies, and systems to achieve outcomes. 
  • Be customer-focused and comfortable advising and partnering with senior and executive-level management about complex initiatives, polices, and issues.
  • Understand how to manage complex projects including scoping and organizing resources, developing work programs, and facilitating multi-disciplinary teams.
  • Have strategies and ideas to continue reinforcing a culture of employee engagement which supports the development, learning, coaching, and team-building necessary for the workforce of the future.
  • Be able to persevere and adapt as required, while working in a multi-faceted and sometimes ambiguous environment.
This exciting opportunity to join County government is open to all applicants and will remain open until filled. Applicants that apply by September 5, 2022will receive first consideration.  A King County application (paper or electronic) is required. We highly recommend you submit a resume and a cover letter, detailing your interest with your application materials.  If you have any questions, please contact Brittney Marzest at or 206-477-8104.

Supplemental Information

Forbes recently named King County as one of Washington State's best employers.

Together, with leadership and our employees, we're changing the way government delivers service and winning national recognition as a model of excellence. Are you ready to make a difference? Come join the team dedicated to serving one of the nation's best places to live, work and play.

Guided by our "True North", we are making King County a welcoming community where every person can thrive. We value diversity, inclusion and belonging in our workplace and workforce. To reach this goal we are committed to workforce equity. Equitable recruiting, support, and retention is how we will obtain the highest quality workforce in our region; a workforce that shares and will help advance our guiding principles--we are one team; we solve problems; we focus on the customer; we drive for results; we are racially just; we respect all people; we lead the way; and we are responsible stewards. We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans.

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement

King County Executive Branch employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If you are the successful candidate for the position you applied for, the County will send you a conditional offer letter.

As a condition of employment, prior to a final offer of employment, you will be required to:

  • submit proof of vaccination, or
  • have an approved request for medical or religious exemption and an approved accommodation. Philosophical, political, scientific, or sociological objections to vaccination will not be considered for an exemption or accommodation.

People are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 two weeks after receiving the final dose of a vaccination approved by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The Executive Branch includes employees in the Executive branch, the Assessor's Office, Elections, the King County Sheriff's Office, and the Executive Office.

King County is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer

No person is unlawfully excluded from employment opportunities based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation and pregnancy), age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or other protected class. Our EEO policy applies to all employment actions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, selection for training, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation.

To Apply

If you are interested in pursuing this position, please follow the application instructions carefully. If you need this announcement in an alternate language or format, would like to request accommodation or assistance in the application or assessment process or if you have questions please contact the recruiter listed on this job announcement.

King County offers a highly-competitive compensation and benefits package designed to meet the diverse needs of our employees and support our employees' health and well-being.  Eligible positions receive the following benefits and have access to the following programs:

  • Medical, dental, and vision coverage: King County pays 100% of the premiums for eligible employees and family members
  • Life and disability insurance: employees are provided basic coverage and given the opportunity to purchase additional insurance for both the employee and eligible dependents
  • Retirement: King County employees are eligible to participate in a pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems and a 457(b) deferred-compensation plan
  • Transportation program and ORCA transit pass
  • 10 paid holidays each year (plus 2 personal holidays)
  • Generous vacation and paid sick leave
  • Paid parental leave, family and medical leaves, and volunteer leave
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Wellness programs
  • Onsite gyms and activity centers
  • Employee giving program
  • Employee assistance programs
  • Flexible schedules and telecommuting options, depending on position
  • Training and career development programs
For additional information about employee benefits please visit our Benefits, Payroll, and Retirement Page.

This is a general description of the benefits offered to eligible King County employees, and every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy.  If any information on this document conflicts with the provisions of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), the CBA prevails.  Also, in the event of any incorrect information in this document, applicable laws, policies, rules, CBAs, or official plan documents will prevail.
NOTE:  Benefits for Term Limited Temporary (TLT) or Short Term Temporary (STT) positions, including leave eligibility and/or participation in the pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems, will vary based upon the terms and details of the position. Short Term Temporary positions are not eligible for an ORCA transit pass.
For inquiries about the specifics of this position, please contact the recruiter identified on this job posting.

Are you applying to this position as an eligible current or previous King County Employee Priority Placement Program Participant? Is this position the same or lower percentage of full-time when compared to the position held at the point of the notification of layoff? Do you possess the skills and abilities to qualify for this position?
  • Yes, I was given a layoff notice from my role at King County and I am within two years of the effective date of my layoff. Additionally, the position I was laid off from was the same or a higher percentage of FT status when compared to this one.
  • No.
If you answered yes to the question above and you are applying for this position as a Priority Placement Participant, to be considered, you must provide the following three pieces of information in the space provided: 1. The title you held when you received your layoff notice 2. The department you worked in 3. The effective date of your layoff

Required Question