Principal Data Engineer

About Us

The Exemption Project | | TrueRoll™

The Exemption Project is a software startup with the goal of introducing modern data science and artificial intelligence principles to governments. Our vision is to drive adoption of predictive solutions into core government operations that empower states, cities, and counties to create efficiencies, social equity, and savings for both staff and citizens.

The founding team at The Exemption Project has over twenty years of experience working with governments and is passionate about understanding the nuances of operational challenges as well as building and delivering modern AI-powered solutions.,, We come from both software startup and academic backgrounds, have led and grown successful technical and sales teams, won venture challenges, published academic papers in prominent venues, and helped build SaaS businesses to successful exits. We take pride in being empathetic leaders, mentors, and peers for everyone in our org. We’re a veteran- and disabled-owned business that champions diversity and is striving to build a rich and rewarding culture within its core team.

To date, we’ve raised funding from prominent Silicon Valley angel investors and venture firms, built a maturing set of capabilities, and signed some of the nation’s most progressive counties as customers. Our proven platform, written in Python, orchestrated by Airflow, and running on AWS, has already processed billions of records in total, and reprocesses those records monthly.

We’ve laid the asphalt for the launching pad, and now we need help building rockets (read: data systems) that will launch us to the next stage!  

About You

You’re an intellectually curious data specialist with a desire to flex your skills at the foundational level of a business’s formation. You’re excited about having very little technical debt to deal with and are looking forward to applying your knowledge to create an efficient data infrastructure built on modern tools and best practices.

You have experience in transforming business vision/requirements into the technical components that make them sing: flexible data models, robust orchestrated ETL processes, scalable cloud infrastructure, monitoring/alerting capabilities.

You understand the value in building robust architectures that scale, but also the leverage that comes from using a quick prototype or a hack to demonstrate a new idea, or to try something that has never been done before.

You’re excited by the opportunity to see the direct impacts of your work, and work closely with your team and customers to solve problems without waiting months for your code to ship. You get especially excited when you see five hours of free time on your calendar to tackle a tough technical challenge on your own that takes the data pipeline to the next level.

You want to get to know the people who the things you build will benefit, and see the joy on their face when they use it for the first time.

You either have startup experience or are excited about the opportunity to work in a budding environment where your contributions create the culture. You’re tired of the restrictions of working in a corporate environment, and you want the freedom to focus on building something real. You want ownership in what you create, and you care less about defined processes, employee handbooks, official training, and organizational structure than you do about building and creating interesting things that serve purpose in the real world.

Job Title

Principal Data Engineer: Data Warehouse Engineering

Job Summary

Responsibilities and Duties

As a principal data engineer at The Exemption Project, you will be working on our data science pipeline, the core component of our intellectual property. The data science pipeline solves the difficult challenge of cleansing, normalizing, and standardizing data sourced from disparate locations and creating useful reference datasets that serve specific business use cases. 

As an example, for our homestead exemption audit solution (TrueRoll™), which identifies unqualified and unclaimed benefits within a county’s property tax roll, the data science pipeline’s job is to take datasets from various vendors, scrapes, and data requests to perform difficult person-and-parcel entity matching across the reference sets, with each data source having various matching and validation requirements.  

You’ll also be responsible for helping construct and fully automate the Airflow-orchestrated transformation path that our customers’ data goes through to ultimately create the value that The Exemption Project delivers. As an example, our clients submit tax roll datasets, we apply data pipeline **MAGIC**, and they receive a confidence-sorted dataset of properties that are receiving potentially fraudulent tax benefits. You’d help us build the MAGIC part.

Day-to-Day Activities Include

  • Daily remote standups with the core team, coordinated via Zoom/Trello/Slack

  • Prioritizing a pipeline of activities that you’ve identified to achieve business objectives and timelines

  • Writing ETLs, designing and documenting data models and data dictionaries, advising us on data warehouse best practices, and setting up data flow monitoring capabilities

  • Coordinating activities, code commits, and deployments with affected parties remotely via Zoom/Trello/Slack

  • Liaising with our CEO (cofounder), Chief Data Scientist (cofounder), CTO (<<reporting to), and Data Analysts

Qualifications and Skills

  • Experience leading the development of automated data pipelines for a variety of use cases, starting from raw, frequently updated, disparate data sources to achieving specific business objectives. 

  • Experience building abstracted, reusable service layers so that the underlying infrastructure can be configured (instead of rebuilt) to serve multiple, expanding business purposes

  • 4-6 years building data pipelines << -- just an estimate; don’t disqualify yourself if you have less exp points.

  • Must have strengths in

    • Python

    • AWS

    • postgres

    • Airflow 

    • GitHub

    • Messaging and event frameworks

  • Nice-to-haves: 

    • Experience with distributed computing

    • Development experience with redis, mongodb, or other NoSQL

    • Familiarity with Vault and PKI

    • Comfort with developer automation scripting


  • We're building a fully remote team and thus are remote work friendly. But we hope you'll come visit us frequently in Chicago for some deep dish in the city that we love and where the 2 co-founders reside.

  • Competitive compensation, options packages, healthcare benefits

  • Our first data engineer is a super key hire for us. We leverage six-month probation periods for all new hires to ensure a strong mutual fit. We have specifically defined goals for this period, and clarity will be the highest priority to ensure everyone knows what’s expected of them during those six months.


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