Director of Parks and Recreation

$85,924 - $98,820 yearly
  • City of Harrisonburg, VA
  • Harrisonburg, VA, USA
  • Dec 17, 2021
Full time Administration/Management Parks & Recreation

Job Description

The City of Harrisonburg, Virginia is seeking qualified candidates for consideration as the next Director of Parks and Recreation, which serves as part of the City Manager's Executive Leadership Team. In this role, the Director will plan, direct, coordinate, and supervise parks and recreation assets, programs, services, and staff while ensuring City Council's vision and goals are achieved in relation to their respective department.

Click here to find out more information in the recruitment brochure and be sure to revisit the City's website to submit your application and supplemental documentation by the deadline in order to be considered. 

The Harrisonburg Parks and Recreation Department manages 12 main parks, numerous playgrounds including an award winning 'Dream Come True Playground', a skate park, bike trails, soccer complex, softball and baseball fields, a dog park, and two pools. The largest park in the City of Harrisonburg is Hillandale Park that encompasses 74 acres. Additionally, the department is responsible for the maintenance of Heritage Oaks Golf Course. More information about the parks can be found online.

The Department is an integral part of the City through the delivery of a variety of affordable leisure, recreational, and sports programs. The Department strives to provide cost effective, year-round management and maintenance of the City's parks, public buildings, and golf course with a workforce of approximately 80 FTE's and a budget of $6.4 million for fiscal year 2022.

Under the direction of the City Manager, the Director of Parks and Recreation is responsible for:

  • Supervising and directing the activities and use of public recreation facilities;
  • Evaluating the adequacy of existing parks and recreational facilities and working to secure needed alterations and additions; and
  • Working collaboratively with the Parks and Recreation Commission, civic organizations, and citizens to learn the desires of the community and promote interest in recreation and park facilities.

The ideal candidate will possess:

  • Comprehensive knowledge of all phases of community recreational activities and their administration;
  • Comprehensive knowledge of the principles and methods of park and playground planning and program; and
  • Thorough knowledge of the principles and practices of public administration with special reference to departmental personnel and budget administration.

The candidate should also have the ability to:

  • Develop and execute a well-rounded program of recreational activities;
  • Cooperate with and interpret recreational philosophies to City authorities, private groups, agencies and the general public;
  • Communicate complex ideas, both orally and in writing; and
  • Prepare and present detailed reports.


This is a full-time exempt position with a preferred hiring range of $85,924 - $98,820 plus excellent benefits.

Minimum Requirements:

  • A bachelor’s degree with coursework in recreation, park administration, or related field and extensive (6 or more years) experience in the administration of recreational programs and development and planning of recreational facilities. An equivalent combination of education and experience may be used to meet this requirement.
  • A valid driver's license.
  • The Certified Park and Recreation Professional (CPRP) designation at time of hire or within 12 months of hire.
  • The Certified Park and Recreation Executive (CPRE) designation is desired.
  • Click here to view the physical requirements for this position.

The selected candidate for this position will be subject to the following screenings and must receive satisfactory results:

  • DMV record review;
  • Credit check;
  • Drug screening; and
  • Criminal background check.

Application Requirements: In order to be considered for this position, applicants must submit the following: City of Harrisonburg online application, cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references.  Applicants unable to attach documents via the online application should contact the Human Resources department at 540.432.8920 or employment@harrisonburgva.gov.  Incomplete applications will not be accepted.

The first review of applications is expected to begin by January 14, 2022. This position may close at any time after 10 calendar days. (posted 12/15/2021) 


The City provides an excellent benefits package including health insurance, retirement (VRS & MissionSquare), life insurance, paid leave and holidays.


All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, disability or veteran status.


The City of Harrisonburg is an Equal Opportunity Employer.