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Bay Area Parks for People Program Director

The Trust for Public Land
San Francisco, California, US
Closing date
Aug 20, 2022

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Academic / Research
Informatics / GIS
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time

Quality parks and green spaces are a fundamental requirement for sustaining healthy, equitable, and resilient communities. Unfortunately, over 100 million people in the United States, including 28 million children, do not have a close-to-home park and miss out on the many public health, environmental and recreational benefits parks provide. That's why TPL works alongside communities to create, protect, and advance the nature-rich places that are vital to human well-being.

Come lead a multi-disciplinary, high functioning Bay Area Parks for People team as their new Program Director. In this position you will oversee the strategy, design, and implementation of a mix of new and existing programs to deliver on our mission of creating parks and protecting land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come.

Building off of TPL's goal to ensure everyone lives within a 10 minute walk of a quality park, the Program Director leads the Parks for People team in deploying our transformational community engagement process that delivers new parks, open space and schoolyards that reflect local interests, cultures, heritage, and aspirations.

The position will be based in San Francisco and work with communities throughout the Bay Area including our current programs in San Francisco, Richmond, Oakland and Hayward, including our Oakland Green Schoolyards Initiative. In addition, the Program Director will lead a cross functional team to provide technical assistance and support to communities in the Central Valley.


Program Development and Strategy:
  • Lead and build on a strategy to close the Bay Area's Park Equity gap through: coalition and local community power building, applied research, activation, and constructing ‘proof of concept' community driven park projects in the region.
  • Oversee program partnerships with local non-profits and community groups in support of park development, green schoolyards and stewardship goals.
  • Oversee and implement community engagement processes that ensure equity in participation and that all voices are heard and input is integrated into plans, designs, construction and stewardship.
  • Inspire local and regional decision makers to prioritize and fund park equity in the region. You will achieve this by working with our Government affairs team to develop and manage relations with local and State public agencies and elected officials. This includes local and State recreation and parks departments, school districts, California Natural Resources Agency, State Coastal Conservancy, etc. Leverage the national expertise in Park / Conservation Finance to identify, build support for and, if applicable, serve as local liaison for park funding measures.
  • Manage a multi-year program budget (of $3.5M) in support of funding goals and annual expenditure forecasts.

Philanthropy and Marketing:
  • Work closely with the State Director, philanthropy staff and public grants manager in efforts to raise public and private funds for the program. Support all aspects of the program's fundraising efforts including identification of funding opportunities, preparing grant applications, executing funding agreements, developing of fundraising materials and proposals for foundations, corporations, and individual donors, and participating in meetings with potential funders to provide information about the programs.
  • Work with the TPL marketing team and the State Director to promote program visibility and funding support. This includes representing the parks program internally and externally including engaging with our Advisory Board, internal intranet platform Canopy, and external partners through forums and conferences.

  • Work with TPL colleagues across the state and nation to deliver award winning, high quality, community driven and centered projects that demonstrate our commitment to community, access and equity. Share and drive best-practice work.
  • Lead, mentor and support a team of experienced program staff to deliver high quality projects with inclusive and meaningful community engagement. Strategize team growth and promotion. Support staff in achieving professional goals in alignment with mission delivery and long term planning.

  • Proven ability to both manage complex projects, programs, staff, and budgets and to create a strategic and coherent vision for long-term leadership in building and/or renovating parks, trails, schoolyards, playgrounds and public spaces.
  • Familiarity with urban planning and construction processes, particularly park planning, landscape architecture and capital improvements and an understanding of urban environmental quality of life issues including parks and trails, environmental justice, brownfields, walkability, climate change, community development, and housing.
  • Familiarity with advocacy and government relations needed to impact policy and funding.
  • Excellent leadership, meeting facilitation, collaboration, public speaking and communication skills.
  • Experience in working with community leaders, agency staff, elected officials and local media to promote and implement successful projects.
  • Experience in collaborating and negotiating with diverse groups and interests, including communities of color and historically marginalized communities.
  • Possesses an entrepreneurial spirit, initiative, energy, the capacity to lead, mentor and inspire others, and the capacity to be a high performer and a team player, with common sense and resiliency.
  • Bachelor's degree required, including course work in urban planning, landscape architecture, and land use management. Master's degree preferred.
  • Minimum 8 years related experience.
  • Willingness to travel and attend evening meetings.
  • Computer Proficiency: Microsoft Office, Excel and familiarity with geographic information systems (GIS)..
As a full-time, exempt employee, you will be eligible for The Trust for Public Land's comprehensive benefits program which includes medical, dental, and vision insurance, four weeks of vacation annually plus holidays, and a 403(b) retirement plan, currently with an up to 5.5% company match. The anticipated salary is $115,000-$140,000.

The Trust for Public Land's active goal is to be an inclusive and equitable place to work and build community. As the organization actively works to eliminate racial and other disparities it welcomes candidates with diverse backgrounds and/or multicultural skillsets and experiences. We are open to the possibility that a great candidate for this job may not precisely meet all of the above criteria; if you believe you are the right person for this job and can persuasively make that case, we encourage you to apply.

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