Job Information

City and County of San Francisco Arborist Technician (3434) - SF Recreation & Parks - (147666) Temporary Provisional in San Francisco, California

Application Open: June 10, 2024

Application Deadline: Apply Immediately. Application filing will be open at least through June 24, 2024 and will close any time thereafter.

Compensation: $100,672 - $113,490 Annually

Contact: Ian Talley at

Appointment Type: Temporary Provisional (TPV) Appointment. Appointee must participate and be successful in a Civil Service Examination process for this classification and be selected through an open competitive process in order to be considered for a permanent appointment. Provisional appointments may not exceed three (3) years.

Amid a dynamic and ever-evolving urban landscape, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department (  stewards one of the premier urban park systems in America.  San Francisco recently became the first city in the United States for which 100% of its residents live within a ten-minute walk of a park.  Considered by San Franciscans to be one of the City’s most popular and effective public agencies, our Department manages and maintains more than 225 parks, playgrounds, and open spaces in San Francisco, including two outside of city limits: Sharp Park in Pacifica and Camp Mather in the High Sierras. Our 4,100- acre system includes 25 recreation centers, 9 swimming pools, 5 golf courses and numerous athletic facilities, including sports courts, ball diamonds, soccer fields and gymnasiums. Included in the department’s responsibilities are Golden Gate Park, Coit Tower, the Marina Yacht Harbor, the Palace of Fine Arts, and TPC Harding Park golf course.

More than 2,000 talented individuals are part of our team, from gardeners, foresters, and recreation leaders to park rangers, custodians, electricians, painters and more. Our core mission, as it has been throughout our history, is to provide opportunities for San Francisco residents and visitors alike to gather, play, learn, relax, and enjoy nature in the city.

Urban Forestry Section

The Urban Forestry Section consists primarily of Arborist Technician, Gardeners and General Laborers responsible for maintaining over 131,000 trees on 4,196 acres of public parkland in City parks, identified Natural Areas and public golf courses. Major sites include Golden Gate Park and Stern Grove.

Under general supervision, the Arborist Technician (3434) performs duties involving the maintenance and removal of trees and other vegetation. The essential functions of this position include, but are not limited to:

  • Assesses and evaluates condition of trees and other vegetation; maintains tree inventories;

  • Climbs up trees and/or using aerial lift equipment to reach dead, damaged or unwanted limbs or tree tops for removal and pruning, or for purposes of complete tree removal;

  • Performs various types of rigging in connection with this work; operates chain and hand saws, aerial ladder truck, chipper, and other equipment. with cranes, skitters, tractors and other heavy equipment;

  • Prepares brush for disposal, operating chipper and driving aerial lift equipment vehicles, heavy loader trucks or other required vehicles;

  • Drives heavy equipment; and

  • Performs related duties as assigned.

Nature of the work: This position involves exposure to a high risk of physical injury to the employee and constant vigilance to public safety. Positions in this job code require considerable physical demands, manual dexterity with frequent exposure to arduous and disagreeable working conditions, including inclement weather.

Camp Mather Assignment Requirement: This position will be required to temporarily live and perform duties at Camp Mather, a campground operated by the Recreation and Parks Department, located in the Sierra Mountains near Yosemite. Camp Mather work crew assignments typically lasts between two (2) and eight (8) weeks, twice a year, during the spring and fall seasons before and after Camp Mather season. Additional work periods at Camp Mather may be required. Room and board is provided at Camp Mather and a REC vehicle is supplied.

Experience: Three (3) years of verified journey-level experience as a tree work professional. Duties must have included climbing trees of considerable height for the purpose of removing tree limbs, treetops or entire tree in accordance with safety standards. Experience in pruning trees from a ladder is not qualifying experience.

Education: Possession of a high school diploma or equivalent (GED or High School Proficiency Examination).

License and Certification:

Possession of a valid California Class C driver’s license at the time of application; AND

Possession of a valid California Class B driver’s license with no air brakes restriction is required upon completion of the probationary period.

Substitution: Successful completion of an Arborist Technician Apprenticeship Program approved and registered with the California Division of Apprenticeship Standards.

Note: The above minimum qualifications are under review by the Civil Service Commission and may differ for subsequent job announcements posted for this classification.

Desirable Qualifications:

The stated desirable qualifications below may be considered at the end of the selection process when candidates are referred for hiring

  • Possession of a Certified Arborist certificate; and

  • Completion of an accredited Arborist training program

Verification of Education and Experience:

Every application is reviewed to ensure that you meet the minimum qualifications as listed in the job ad. Please review our articles on Employment Application and Minimum Qualifications ( and Verification of Experience and/or Education ( for considerations taken when reviewing applications. 

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco.

Selection Procedure

The selection process will include evaluation of applications in relation to minimum requirements. Depending on the number of applicants, the Department may establish and implement additional screening mechanisms to comparatively evaluate qualifications of candidates. If this becomes necessary, only those applicants whose qualifications most closely meet the needs of the Department will be invited for an interview.

Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications are not guaranteed to advance through all of the steps in the selection process.

Additional Information Regarding Employment with the City and County of San Francisco:

  • Information About the Hiring Process (

  • Conviction History

  • Employee Benefits Overview  (  

  • Equal Employment Opportunity (  

  • Disaster Service Worker (

  • ADA Accommodation

  • Veterans Preference (

  • Seniority Credit in Promotional Exams

  • Right to Work (

  • Copies of Application Documents

  • Diversity Statement (

Drug Test Requirement

Applicants for positions in this classification who are not currently employed by the City and County of San Francisco in a safety-sensitive position represented by Local 261 are required to pass pre-employment drug (including marijuana) and alcohol testing upon reasonable suspicion or after-work related accident. Applicants with positive result from pre-employment drug test will be restricted from hire in safety-sensitive positions for six months after the date of the positive test.

Race and Social Equity Statement

We believe that parks and open space in San Francisco provides the opportunity to model equitable access for all.  With this belief, San Francisco became the first city in the United States for which 100% of its residents live within a ten-minute walk of a park. The Recreation and Park Department’s goal is to close the gaps and improve equity and access to quality parks and open space, and recreation activities for historically marginalized communities.  

We envision a department that proactively infuses racial and social equity in its internal operations.  With a multi-disciplinary team of talented individuals - gardeners, recreation leaders, park rangers, custodians, craft shop personnel, park and recreation managers and more, the department is committed to doing its part to provide equitable access to parks and programs for all the communities we serve to enjoy, as well as foster a work environment where our differences are celebrated, and everyone has what they need to thrive regardless of their race, age, ability, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or country of origin.

Applicants will receive a confirmation email from that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file. Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records. Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.

The City and County of San Francisco encourages women, minorities and persons with disabilities to apply. Applicants will be considered regardless of their sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (associated with cancer, a history of cancer, or genetic characteristics), HIV/AIDS status, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, military and veteran status, or other protected category under the law.