Behavioral Health Clinical Specialist

  • Sonoma County, CA
  • Santa Rosa, California
  • Dec 17, 2023
Full Time Public Health
  • Salary: $101,496.65 - $123,348.79 Annually USD

Job Description

Position Information

Bring your passion for improving mental health and making a positive impact in the lives of individuals and communities to the County of Sonoma Department of Health Services (DHS) as a Behavioral Health Clinical Specialist!

Starting salary up to $59.10/hour ($123,348/year), a competitive total compensation package* PLUS a $15,000 Signing Bonus!^

About the Positions

Behavioral Health Clinical Specialists play a pivotal role in providing expert clinical support and interventions to individuals facing behavioral health challenges. They work closely with our multidisciplinary teams to assess, diagnose, and develop treatment plans to promote mental and emotional well-being. As a Clinical Specialist, you will be responsible for providing oversight of clinical services, clinical supervision, staff training, and direct services to adults, youth, and families receiving services through County programs. Additional responsibilities include:

  • Consulting staff on crisis situations
  • Providing clinical supervision to staff in pursuit of hours for licensure
  • Monitoring the daily workflow of the program, and assigning daily work assignments to staff
  • Supervising student interns working within the program
  • Facilitating meetings with staff, partner agencies, and schools
The ideal candidates will be highly flexible, organized, and skilled in interacting with diverse individuals and groups. Additionally, ideal candidates will possess:

  • Experience conducting clinical and crisis assessments for children and youth with serious mental health needs
  • The ability to work well in a fast-paced environment
  • A commitment to continual quality improvement
  • Certification in Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS)
  • Completion of the Board of Behavioral Sciences approved course on providing clinical supervision is desirable, not required

About the Programs

  • Partnering with Sonoma County Office of Education (SCOE) to provide services such as crisis response and linkage to community mental health resources and treatment services. The Clinical Specialist will assist schools and SCOE staff and families in connecting students to needed mental health services in the community
  • Outreach and engagement and outpatient specialty mental health treatment for clients living with dual diagnosis. These clients need assistance with a variety of issues such as case management, search for housing, applications for benefits, advocacy for medical services, and coordination of care with other providers. Most of our services are provided with a harm-reduction philosophy
For information on the Behavioral Health Division programs, we encourage you to visit our website.

^Hiring Incentives
The Department of Health Services is currently offering a $15,000 signing bonus paid over three installments during the first two years of service.

Other incentives which may be offered, if applicable, include:

  • Advanced paid vacation and/or sick leave (up to 24 hours per leave type)
  • Relocation reimbursement up to $5,000

What We Offer
Working at the County of Sonoma offers expansive opportunities for growth an d development, the ability to be a part of a challenging and rewarding work environment, and the satisfaction of knowing you're working to better our communities. You can also look forward to flexible work arrangements and excellent benefits* including:

  • Hybrid Telework - A schedule that meets the needs of our staff, department operations, and the communities we serve may be available depending on the assignment
  • Salary Advancement - A salary increase after 1,040 hours (6 months when working full-time) for good work performance; eligibility for a salary increase for good performance every year thereafter, until reaching the top of the salary range
  • Paid Time Off - Competitive vacation and sick leave accruals, 12 paid holidays, and an additional 8 floating holiday hours per year
  • County Paid Health Premium Contributions - 100% premium contribution for the majority of employee-only and employee + family health plan options
  • Staff Development/Wellness Pay - Annual benefit allowances of up to $850 and ongoing education/training opportunities
  • Post-Retirement Health Reimbursement Arrangement - County contributions to help fund post-retirement employee health insurance/benefits
  • Retirement - A pension fully integrated with Social Security
  • Paid Parental Leave - May be eligible for up to 8 weeks (320 hours) after 12 months of County employment
*Salary is negotiable within the established range. Benefits described herein do not represent a contract and may be changed without notice. Additional information can be found in the Engineers and Scientists of California Union Local 20 Memorandum of Understanding (ESC MOU) and our Employee Benefits directory.

This recruitment is being conducted to fill two full-time Behavioral Health Clinical Specialist positions in the Department of Health Services. This employment list may also be used to fill future full-time, part-time, or extra-help vacancies as they occur during the active status of the list. County employees who wish to be considered for future vacancies should consider applying to this recruitment.


Minimum Qualifications

Education and Experience: Any combination of education, training, and experience which would likely provide the knowledge and abilities listed. Normally, this would include a Master's Degree or higher in social work, counseling, psychology, or a related field from an accredited college or university; and two years of related experience as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, licensed Psychologist, OR a successor licensure recognized as equivalent by the State of California.

Special Requirement: Possession of either a valid, current Licensed Clinical Social Worker license, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist license, OR Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor license, issued by the Board of Behavioral Science Examiners, State of California; OR possession of a valid, current license as a Psychologist issued by the State of California, Board of Medical Quality Assurance, Psychology Examining Committee; OR possession of a successor licensure recognized as equivalent by the State of California.

License: Possession of a valid driver’s license at the appropriate level including special endorsements, as required by the State of California, may be required depending upon assignment to perform the essential job functions of the position.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

Considerable knowledge of: prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation techniques used in the identification and treatment of mental illness and emotional disorders; federal, state, and local laws, ordinances, rules, and regulations associated with mental health treatment and education programs; the social, psychological, and physiological effects of mental disorders; principles, methods, and techniques used to develop formal and informal training programs associated with assigned specialty areas; methods and techniques used to develop community information and education programs; the scope and activities of community based agencies involved in the education and treatment of mental health, including wellness and recovery, and strength based approaches with clients and their families.

Knowledge of: modern methods and techniques used to lead, plan, and control the work of others.

Ability to: plan, assign, supervise, review, and evaluate the work of staff; plan, organize, conduct, and evaluate the effectiveness of training and education programs, including training staff in clinical casework techniques and methodologies; provide lead direction to a multi-disciplinary mental health treatment team; use community resources to establish and maintain effective community programs to assist in the care, prevention, education, and treatment of mental health clients and their families; assess situations, identify problems, develop acceptable problem-solving options, anticipate possible risks associated with each option, and determine appropriate course of action; work effectively with a multicultural client and family population with diverse background and needs; establish and maintain effective working relationships on a multi-disciplinary team with peers, supervisors, subordinates, members of the public, other County employees, community agency staff, and others who have an interest in mental health prevention and treatment; supervise individual and group behavior and provide necessary support; prepare clear and concise oral and written reports; lead, plan, and control the work of others.

Selection Procedure & Some Helpful Tips When Applying

  • Your application information and your responses to the supplemental questions are evaluated and taken into consideration throughout the entire selection process.
  • You should list all employers and positions held within the last ten years in the work history section of your application. Be as thorough as possible when responding to the supplemental questions.
  • You may include history beyond ten years if related to the position for which you are applying. If you held multiple positions with one employer, list out each position separately.
  • Failure to follow these instructions may impact your competitiveness in this process or may result in disqualification.

Please visit Getting a Job with the County of Sonoma to review more detailed information about the hiring process, including the application process, examination steps, and department selection process.


Responses to supplemental questions will be used in assessing minimum qualifications. Please provide specific and detailed responses of a reasonable length to allow for a thorough assessment of your qualifications. Responses that state, "See Resume" or "See Application" may be considered insufficient.

The selection procedure will consist of the following examination:

An Application & Supplemental Questionnaire Appraisal Examination (weight 100%). Each application and supplemental questionnaire will be thoroughly evaluated for satisfaction of minimum qualifications and relevance of educational coursework, training, experience, knowledge, and abilities that relate to this position. Candidates possessing the most appropriate job-related qualifications will be placed on an employment list and referred to the department for selection interviews.


A background investigation is required prior to employment. Candidates referred to departments for a selection interview are typically required to sign authorization and release forms enabling such an investigation. Failure to sign prescribed forms will result in the candidate not being considered further for that vacancy. Reference information will not be made available to applicants.

Additional requirements, such as successful completion of a physical exam, drug screen, etc., may apply, depending on the duties and responsibilities of the position. If you receive a conditional job offer for the position, the requirements upon which the offer is contingent will be outlined in the conditional job letter. You may also review the Job Classification Screening Schedule to determine the requirements for this position.


Applications are accepted online at . Paper applications may be submitted by person, fax (707-565-3770), email, or through the mail. All applications and appropriate supplemental information as outlined in the job bulletin must be RECEIVED by the time and date specified on the first page of this job announcement. Continuous recruitments may close without notice at any time that a sufficient number of qualified applications have been received. Applications received after the recruitment closes will not be accepted.

The County of Sonoma values diversity and is dedicated to creating a workplace environment that provides individuals with a sense of belonging. We are committed to having a diverse workforce that is representative of the communities we serve. The County is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer where all aspects of employment are based on merit, competence, performance, and business need.

HR Analyst: BH
HR Technician: RR

IMPORTANT NOTE: Benefits described herein do not apply to Extra Help positions.


These are some of the excellent benefits the County offers:

Paid Time Off : Competitive vacation and sick leave accruals; 12 paid holidays, and an additional 8 floating holiday hours per year; and may be eligible for up to 8 weeks (320 hours) of Paid Parental Leave after 12 months of County employment.

Health Plan : Choice of five health plans (a PPO, EPO, HMO, and two deductible HMOs) with a County contribution towards the premium (the contribution amount varies by bargaining unit.For specific details, please refer to the applicable MOU).A County contribution to a Health Reimbursement Arrangement is available for some bargaining units.

Retirement :Fully integrated with Social Security.For more information regarding eligibility, retirement contributions, and reciprocity with prior public service, please visit .

IRS 457 Plan : Pre-tax employee contribution up to the IRS annual maximum.

Retiree Medical : County contribution to a Health Reimbursement Arrangement to help fund post-retirement employee health insurance/benefits.

Plus excellent dental, vision, disability, life insurance, professional development, and more.

For answers to specific questions regarding the employment process and more details about benefits or retirement, please contact Human Resources at (707) 565-2331.Additional details about benefit and compensation packages can be found in the MOUs located at . For specific information about health and welfare benefits including plan options, coverage, and premium amounts go to or, contact the Human Resources' Risk Management-Benefits Office at or (707) 565-2900.

*IMPORTANT NOTES: Benefits described herein do not represent a contract and may be changed without notice.

Closing Date/Time: Continuous

Base Pay


Job Address

Santa Rosa, California United States View Map