Our client, the Prince George’s County Planning Board (Board) of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (Commission) is searching for an experienced leader in the management of parks and recreation programs to become the next director of its Prince George’s County Department of Parks and Recreation (Department).
The Commission is the nation’s only six-time winner of the prestigious Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Parks and Recreation Management by the National Recreation and Parks Association. The team also is one of only two Maryland jurisdictions currently accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies. The Board is looking for a stellar individual capable of building upon this history of success.
The Department’s primary service area is Prince George’s County, one of Maryland’s most populous counties and a growing economic engine. With nearly one million residents today, the County is demographically and economically diverse, presenting a full spectrum of complex challenges and new opportunities. The community includes dense urban centers, new corridor cities, new and aging suburbs, as well as rural communities and farms. It has a progressive government and informed, active residents. The Department’s park and recreation facilities are integral to the county’s quality of life, and consistently among its most frequented public amenities.
With an annual operating budget of $278 million, a six-year capital budget of $215 million, and an authorized staff of more than 1,400 professionals, the Department is deployed to manage more than 28,671 acres of parkland, including passive and active recreation facilities. The Department has an extensive portfolio of responsibilities, including planning and stewardship, development, maintenance, management, and operation of all of the amenities, facilities, cultural and historic resources, and protected natural areas in the park system. In addition, the Department’s work is supported directly by an accredited police force comprised of approximately 131 sworn officers.
The Director is appointed by, and serves at the pleasure of, the five-member Board. The Board’s Chair provides day-to-day reporting supervision, and the director is expected to coordinate seamlessly with the Board’s Prince George’s County Planning Department, the Commission’s corporate leadership, as well as the agency’s other park-related operations, and the Montgomery Parks Department, as appropriate. The Director works closely with the Board and its Chair, and interacts frequently with County Council members, other state and local elected officials, executive agencies, community organizations, and members of the public.
Experience and Training
Highly desirable characteristics include strong interpersonal skills and judgment necessary to communicate effectively with the Planning Board, County officials, and members of the public, and to provide leadership, motivation, and development for Parks and Recreation staff. The successful candidate for this position will have the experience, skills, and enthusiasm to lead the Department in its focus on providing public space that is safe and well-maintained, protecting and interpreting the valuable natural and cultural resources, providing a vast array or recreational and programming opportunities to meet the needs of our Public and Stakeholders, and meeting the evolving needs of an increasingly diverse and rapidly growing population. Proven management ability, critical thinking and reasoned analysis, exceptional communication skills, and respect for public accountability are crucial to this position.
The ideal candidate will possess an advanced degree from an accredited college or university in Public Administration, Recreation Management/Administration, Business Administration, or a comparable field; and or comparable education; and (a) Twelve years of progressively responsible and broad-ranged management experience, of which at least five years must be at an executive- or senior-level directly managing programs of considerable complexity in public parks or recreation; or, alternatively, (b) A combination of education and management experience in parks and recreation equivalent to the minimum qualifications prescribed above in (a) and (b).
The selected candidate much have a documented record of effective and ethical leadership and strong professional teams, and commitment to high levels of performance, fairness and diversity. This is a highly visible position requiring exceptional communication, interpersonal and leadership skills. A Certified Park and Recreation Professional (CPRP) as granted by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is preferred. Possession of a valid Driver’s License with an acceptable driving record is required.
This position is open until filled and applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. If you are interested in this opportunity, please submit a cover letter outlining your qualifications, and your resume to MNCPPC_Parks_Director@polihire.com.