Director of Parks and Recreation

Organization: City of Louisville, Kentucky
Salary: A competitive salary commensurate with qualifications and experience.
Close Date: First screening date is June 23, 2023

Job Description:

Louisville is the largest city in the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the 29th most-populous city in the United States. Named for King Louis XVI of France, it was founded in 1778 by George Rogers Clark, making it one of the oldest cities west of the Appalachian Mountains. Located beside the Falls of the Ohio, the only major obstruction to river traffic between the upper Ohio River and the Gulf of Mexico, the settlement quickly became one of the busiest ports in the United States.

Owing to its strategic location at the Falls of the Ohio, Louisville was a major commercial center. River transportation was supplemented by the construction of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, which was chartered in1850 and operated more than 1,800 miles of line in the state by 1920. Joseph E. Seagram and Sons opened the world’s largest distillery in Louisville following the repeal of prohibition.

Today, the City is known as the home of the Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), the University of Louisville and its Louisville Cardinals athletic teams, Louisville Slugger baseball bats, and three of Kentucky’s six Fortune 500 companies: Humana, Kindred Healthcare and Yum! Brands. Its main airport is also the site of United Parcel Service’s worldwide air hub. Louisville is also the world’s capital of “bourbonism” - 95 percent of the world’s bourbon is produced in Kentucky and Louisville is home to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail which leads to Frankfort, Bardstown, and Shelbyville, among other nearby destinations.

Description of the Government
The current government in Louisville was created after the merger of the governments of the City of Louisville and Jefferson County and is referred to as Louisville Metro Government. It is organized under a mayor-council system. The Mayor is elected to four-year terms and is responsible for the administration of Metro Government. The Louisville Metro Council is a unicameral body consisting of 26 members, each elected from a geographic district, normally for four-year terms. The Mayor is limited to three consecutive terms while members are not term limited. Department directors, including the Director of Parks and Recreation, are appointed by the Mayor. The Director of Parks and Recreation reports to a Deputy Mayor.

About Louisville Metro Parks and Recreation
Louisville is known as the City of Parks and for good reasons. Louisville’s park system is the last designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the “Father of American Landscape Architecture,” and one of only five such systems across the country. The Louisville parks and parkways system is a clearly planned system of large, landscaped parks connected by tree-lined parkways, and smaller parks, playgrounds, and squares.

The system includes nearly 6,050 acres in parks, parkways, and green-ways and 6,600 acres within Jefferson Memorial Forest, the nation’s largest municipal urban forest. There are 81 neighborhood parks, 29 community parks, 10 major urban parks, 14 community centers, 10 golf courses, six parkways, four greenways, the historic Iroquois Amphitheater, an Adapted and Inclusive (AIR) recreation center, the Mary T. Meagher Aquatic Center, three outdoor pools, two skateparks, five cemeteries, and two historic homes.

In 2022, Louisvillians identified parks, trails, and recreation among the top three factors that make the community a great place to live.
Louisville Metro Parks and Recreation is accredited by the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA).

About the Director of Parks and Recreation Position
The Director is responsible to the Office of the Mayor for the proper administration of all Department affairs as outlined in the Charter. The Director oversees and manages all municipal service functions and day-to-day operations of the Department. The Director performs personnel management, participates in collective bargaining, labor relations and participates in the selection of departmental employees.
The Director works with the Mayor’s office to develop strategic priorities and annual budgets in partnership with other departments and Metro Council. The Director administers all laws and ordinances related to the department. The Director implements policies and manages operations. The Director of Parks & Recreation implements the department budget and oversees the maintenance of department assets and facilities.

The Director researches issues of concern for the Mayor and Metro Council and makes recommendations for their review. The Director works collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders to promote Metro Parks while maintaining their essential character. The Director represents Metro in regional and Commonwealth meetings to ensure awareness of programs and opportunities that may affect the community and serves as voice and advocate for Metro Louisville’s interests.

Visit for additional information.

Masters or Bachelor’s in Parks & Recreation Administration with over 8-10 years of experience in a diverse Parks & Recreation Department at the administrative level or knowledge, skills and education that demonstrate ability to provide leadership, management, and administration of Louisville Metro Parks & Recreation with 300 employees and 120 parks, etc. Professional urban parks experience is a plus.

Knowledge, skills, and abilities should include great communications skills with all stakeholders and employees; management and operation skills; leadership skills; labor relations knowledge; human resources experience; ability to find, secure, and implement grants; excellent project management skills; budgeting experience; and the creativity to move the department forward by building relationships with non-profits, Council members and the community.

Compensation and Application Process
This Mayor appointed position has a very competitive salary for the role and expectations. An excellent benefits package will augment the salary.

If you are interested in this exciting opportunity and would like additional details, please contact Ms. Frank at (203) 213-3722 or Mr. Slavin at (770) 449-4656.

To apply: Submit a cover letter and resume to Ms. Frank at The position will remain open until filled; first screening date is June 23, 2023. Top candidates will be asked to complete a questionnaire. Early resumes will be reviewed as they arrive.
A detailed recruitment profile is available at either or

Ms. Randi Frank; Randi Frank Consulting, LLC; 7700 Hoover Way; Louisville, KY 40219, 203-213-3722,,


Download a comprehensive profile information document (PDF)

© Copyright Slavin Management Consultants. All rights reserved.

Close This Listing Window