Park Ridge Park District (PRPD), IL. (pop. 39,656is seeking to hire a forward-thinking Executive Director with a proven record of being a collaborative and innovative leader who can combine vision, strategy, and effective governance in the oversight of the agency. PRPD is in a key geographic location close to O’Hare Airport, major expressways, and rail transportation. The community is committed to offering excellent schools and outstanding recreational amenities that serve as an important factor in the quality of life for all residents. 
The Executive Director leads a team of 62 full-time, over 530 part-time and over 200 seasonal employees. The PRPD has an operating budget of $17 million and offers 21 park sites totaling 138 acres of park land, 15 playgrounds, 5 aquatic facilities, driving range, indoor ice arena, 4 recreation centers, 2 nature centers, fitness center, dog park, and multiple outdoor sports courts and athletic fields.  The PRPD offers a wide variety of year-round recreation programs. The PRPD has very high participation with 38,759 program registrants and over 320,000 daily attendance at facilities last year.
The PRPD Board is looking for an active leader who values teamwork, effective communication and manages people with accountability. The Executive Director will be expected to continuously demonstrate the character, experience, interpersonal skills and judgment to create trust, deliver results, and influence a positive culture.
The Ideal Candidate Will:
  • Have extensive experience in parks and recreation operations, as well as a robust knowledge of park and facility construction and maintenance. 
  • Knowledge of and a commitment to environmental sustainability, open space preservation, and natural resources management.
  • Have enthusiasm and energy for working at a fast pace with the ability to prioritize and delegate effectively.
  • Have a strong commitment to excellent internal and external customer service.
  • Have strong business acumen and financial skills.
  • Be a proven collaborative leader with a professional and engaging communication style with respect to residents, public officials, the business community, and staff.
  • Be an approachable, empathetic, and a supportive leader who has a proven record of developing high performing teams. 
  • Be a visionary leader who can develop the district’s mission, goals, and strategies in alignment with the Park Board’s priorities.
  • Be a transparent and knowledgeable leader able to build trust with all stakeholders.
  • Be innovative and experienced in identifying emerging parks and recreation trends and opportunities and able to effectively implement best practice solutions.
  • Be decisive and firm when necessary while acting with a clear sense of urgency with important priorities set forth by the Park Board.
  • Be an excellent communicator and an active listener.
  • Be experienced in the principles of good governance, making well-researched, data-driven recommendations while building consensus with all Board members.
Candidate Requirements:
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in Parks and Recreation, Facility Management, Public Administration, Business, Finance, or a related field. 
  • 15 years or more of experience at a park and recreation agency, park district, municipal department, or related field, with at least 10 years in a Senior Leadership Management role and experience overseeing the management of a large team of employees and/or a department with similar scope of services and complexity. 
Licenses and Certifications:  
Must have valid Illinois driver’s license to perform as a PRPD driver; Certified Parks and Recreation Professional (CPRP) or Certified Parks and Recreation Executive (CPRE) designation is preferred, CPR/AED/First Aid Certified or ability to obtain certification within 90 days.
Salary Range and Benefits:  
The hiring salary range for this position is $160,000-$190,000. The actual salary will be determined by the selected candidate’s qualifications and commensurate experience. Additionally, the PRPD offers and extensive benefit plan, including a defined benefit pension plan with the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund, competitive health, dental, vision, and life insurance, recreational benefits, and voluntary 457 savings plan and flexible spending plan. 
Apply online with résumé, cover letter, and contact information for five (5) professional references by January 8, 2024, to the attention of GovHR USA Steve Scholten or Chuck Balling, Vice Presidents, and Executive Recruiters, GovHR USA. TEL: 847-380-3240 ext. 185 or ext. 130.
The Park Ridge Park District is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 

 Application Deadline: January 8, 2024 

Posted: 2023-11-21

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