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Program Director - Los Angeles Parks for People

Location: Los Angeles
Posted on: June 9, 2024

Job Description:

Los Angeles,
Posted on April 1, 2024 Are you passionate about creating vibrant, healthy, and inclusive communities through the power of parks and green spaces? Here's your chance to lead a dynamic team as the Program Director for Los Angeles Parks for People at The Trust for Public Land!

Why Us?
Quality parks are the heartbeat of thriving communities. At TPL, we're on a mission to ensure everyone has access to a quality park within a 10-minute walk. With over 100 million people, including 28 million children, lacking this essential connection to nature, your role as a Program Director is pivotal in shaping a healthier and more equitable future.

As the Program Director, you'll spearhead a high-functioning team, overseeing the strategy, design, and implementation of 18 active park equity projects with a whopping $76 million budget. Your leadership will drive the creation of parks, playgrounds, and public spaces that resonate with local interests, cultures, and aspirations, making sure everyone in Southern California lives within a 10-minute walk of a quality park.

What You'll Do:

  • Lead a transformational community engagement process
  • Manage and mentor the Los Angeles Parks for People Program staff
  • Collaborate closely with conservation and philanthropy teams
  • Represent the organization strategically and financially throughout Southern California
  • Develop and maintain key relationships with local leaders in government, businesses, conservation communities, and media
    Who We're Looking For:
    We need a dynamic leader who thrives in a matrix structure, excels at collaboration, and can navigate the diverse landscape of Southern California. If you're skilled at relationship-building and have a passion for creating nature-rich spaces, this role is perfect for you!

    Based in the heart of Los Angeles, you'll work with communities across Southern California, including Los Angeles, El Monte, South Gate, and our exciting new projects in Orange County.

    Ready to Make a Difference?
    Join us in building a legacy of healthy, livable communities for generations to come. Be a part of the movement to ensure everyone has the opportunity to explore, wonder, discover, and play in quality parks.

    Position Summary

    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. At TPL, in collaboration with communities, we create places to advance health, equity, climate action, and community, from the scale of neighborhood schoolyards to the scale of national parks. Every park, playground, trail, and public space we create is an open invitation to explore, wonder, discover, and play.

    Come lead a multi-disciplinary, high functioning Los Angeles Parks for People tam as their new Program Director. In this position, you will oversee the strategy, design, and implementation of new and existing programs (18 active park equity projects with a total design and construction budget of $76 million) to deliver on our mission of creating parks and protecting land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come.

    The LA 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, to further our goal of ensuring everyone lives within a 10-minute walk of a quality park. The Program Director is responsible for representing the organization and carrying out the mission in an effective, strategic, and financially sound way throughout Southern California. S/he reports to the California State Director, works closely with, manages, and mentors the Los Angeles Parks for People Program staff, and collaborates with the conservation and philanthropy teams to present a unified program in Southern California.

    S/he is expected to be a leader and an effective collaborator within the matrix structure of the organization. S/he should be particularly skilled at developing and maintaining relationships for the benefit of The Trust for Public Land with local leaders in the following sectors: government, land and resource-related businesses, the environmental/conservation communities, and the media.

    The position will be based in Los Angeles and works with communities throughout Southern California including our current programs in Los Angeles, El Monte, and South Gate, such as our Los Angeles Green Schoolyards Initiative, and in our emerging work in Orange County.

    Essential Functions

    Program Development and Strategy:
    • The Director will work side by side with the Bay Area Parks for People Director to create a California-wide Parks for People Initiative and bring the California team into strategic alignment with the One California vision.
    • Lead and build on a strategy to close Los Angeles' 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.
    • Manage the Los Angeles Parks for People program staff, budget, and guide implementation of projects that support overall California Strategic Plan goals.
    • Steward 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.
    • The Director is responsible for establishing and stewarding key relationships within the program area with political, corporate, non-governmental organizations, and civic leaders. A strong understanding of the political dynamics of the regional, county, and local level is critical. Working with the California team, as well as others, the Director has a primary role in branding and representing TPL throughout Los Angeles County. S/he works closely with TPL's federal and state governmental affairs staff, the Parks for People and Land and Water team to help coordinate the organization's federal, state, and local government affairs strategy for LA. The Director will leverage the national expertise in Park / Conservation Finance to identify, build support for and, if applicable, serve as local liaison for park funding measures.
    • The Director, in close coordination with the So Cal Protect Program lead, is responsible for developing, integrating, and implementing program conservation, and urban objectives and strategies for Los Angeles County that are consistent with the California vision, and the organization's overall mission. S/he will be responsible for maintaining and updating Los Angeles Program objectives. S/he, in collaboration with the California State Director, will lead an ongoing process to assess the best organizational structure, critical areas of focus, and allocation of resources in order to maximize TPL's effectiveness in Los Angeles County.
    • The Director works with the full California Team to evaluate and pursue new business opportunities, programs, and markets. Examples could include a cohesive and strategic approach to climate change, water, urban work, green printing, and working landscapes within the program area.
    • Manage a multi-year program budget (of approximately $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.Leadership:
        • 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.Qualifications
          • 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, three weeks of vacation annually plus holidays, and a 403(b) retirement plan, currently with an up to 7% 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.


Keywords: TRUST FOR PUBLIC LAND, Los Angeles , Program Director - Los Angeles Parks for People, Executive , Los Angeles, California

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