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Program Manager, National Capacity Building

For more information, or to apply for this job, click here.

Job Summary:
The Central Park Conservancy Institute for Urban Parks “Park-to-Park program” provides education, hands-on training, resources, and technical assistance to other park partnerships, public agencies, and urban park professionals. Building on the success of the Central Park Conservancy, we promote practices that help support long-term success and increase the social, economic, environmental, and health benefits parks provide. Our portfolio of work includes: (1) Practitioner Events & Conferences (2) Continuing & Professional Education (3) Capacity Building & Technical Assistance (4) On-site Internships & Service-learning (4) Research, Publications & Resources.

Job Description:

 Reports to:    Director, Institute

Department:  Institute for Urban Parks

Status:  Full-time, Exempt

Position: 3963

Schedule: Some weekend and evening work required as per program schedules.


The Central Park Conservancy Institute for Urban Parks provides education, hands-on training, resources, and technical assistance to other park partnerships, public agencies, and urban park professionals. The Central Park Conservancy believes that parks are critical urban infrastructure. When properly maintained and managed, urban parks deliver economic, social, and environmental benefits that help ensure urban sustainability and the future livability of cities.

The Central Park Conservancy was founded to break the cycle of “decline and restore” that had plagued Central Park by engaging philanthropy and volunteerism in the Park’s care. This “decline and restore” dynamic, fueled by broad disinvestment in urban parks, continues to negatively affect cities the country.

To address this, the Institute for Urban Parks aims to enhance the capacity of the agencies and organizations caring for urban parks through a variety of training programs, targeted consultations and on-site technical assistance. The portfolio of work includes: practitioner events & conferences; continuing & professional education; direct capacity building & technical assistance; and assorted research, publications and resources.   

We are seeking a Program Manager to provide oversight and guidance to the National Capacity Building Program. The Program Manager will work closely with internal staff and external stakeholders to help identify partner parks and projects serving low-income communities in a small portfolio of cities.

The successful candidate will develop goals; design training programs and curriculum; recruit participants; facilitate trainings; create metrics and measure impact; as well as help guide the work to ensure alignment with the Conservancy’s overall strategic plan and organizational goals.

Summary of Essential Job Functions:

  •  Working with Institute Director and other Institute staff, develop the general framework of the program, tools and resources, and major milestones.
  • Working either internally with Institute staff or with a consultant, help to develop criteria and parameters for qualifying cities and solicit participation from qualifying parks.
  • Determine technology needs for the application and evaluation; develop and implement the program application; and create design for evaluating applicants.
  • Identify and measure intended impact, conduct pre-and post-assessment, gauge participant satisfaction, and undertake needed evaluations for iterative program refinement.
  • Assist the Institute Director in providing targeted support to participating cities based on needs assessments. This will include: designing and delivering training; community outreach or listening sessions; workshops; and technical assistance. The Manager will assist in identifying consultants for these program components, when necessary.
  • Leverage other team members as necessary to develop content for programs and support other team members or staff in designing and delivering trainings as necessary to reinforce the work of the Institute.
  • Develop and codify resources and materials to share with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Visit parks in other cities and liaise  with stakeholders and third-party consultants as needed to ensure program goals are met.
  • Draft reports to individual and institutional donor(s).


  • Bachelor's degree required.
  • Master’s degree in public administration, organizational development, or related-field preferred.
  • Minimum of 3-4 years of experience in the following fields: community development, parks and recreation, project management, program development, evaluations, and/or training and facilitation experience (with at least one year involving managing staff and budgets).
  • Proven ability to think through, communicate, document, organize and execute on project goals – and keep other team members on schedule.
  • Commitment to capacity-building and experience facilitating stakeholder meetings, workshops and developing training tools.
  • Demonstrated interest in supporting parks and nonprofits and working in diverse communities.
  • Demonstrated success in managing strategic partnerships and/or collaborative projects and confident working both individually and as part of a team.
  • Strong project management and problem solving-skills and a record of managing complex projects.
  • Some background in research, qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis, or in program evaluation preferred.
  • Facility with Microsoft Office Suite, especially Word, Excel, and PowerPoint skills.
  • Excellent written and oral communication, interpersonal, and facilitation skills.

For more information, or to apply for this job, click here.

Safety Requirements

Establishment and maintenance of a safe work environment is the shared responsibility of this organization and employees at every level. The Conservancy will make every effort to assure a safe environment and be in compliance with federal, state, and local safety regulations.  Employees are expected to obey safety rules and to exercise caution in all their work activities.  Accordingly, employees should be aware of any hazards, which could cause an injury or accident (e.g., spills, obstacles in walkways).  If an employee discovers a potential dangerous condition, he/she should alert other employees and notify his/her supervisor immediately.



The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification.  They are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified.  All personnel may be required to perform duties outside of their normal responsibilities from time to time, as needed