The Hayward Area Recreation and Park District, known locally as “HARD”, is an independent special district created in 1944 by public vote to provide parks and recreation services. The District now serves over 300,000 residents across 100 square-miles in the City of Hayward and the unincorporated communities of Ashland, Castro Valley, Cherryland, Fairview and San Lorenzo. The District shares boundaries with many governmental agencies including three County Supervisor districts; the City; four school districts; and numerous special districts.
HARD is the largest recreation district in California with over 100 parks and facilities including many unique treasures. This includes a golf course with two-story driving range with Top Golf Tracer systems; a full-production theatre; interpretive nature programs and an animal hospital; two senior centers; robust sports programs for youth and adults; numerous pre-k sites and programs; the historic Hayward Plunge natatorium and several seasonal aquatic facilities and splash pads; California’s oldest Japanese Gardens; Mia’s Dream Come True Ultra-Inclusive Playground; and many beautiful facilities and parks that have received national and state recognition for their design, innovation and beauty, as well as hundreds of educational and recreational classes and programs.
Under the general direction of the General Manager, the Recreation, Arts and Community Services Director plans and directs the activities and operation of the Department, which includes after school and camps, aquatics, arts, amusements/concessions, events, facility operations, golf, nature, pre-kindergarten, seniors, special interest classes, sports, theatre, therapeutic recreation, and volunteers.
The ideal candidate shall be a strategic and critical thinker with an entrepreneurial leadership style, have a “spirit of building”, and the vision to guide the District into becoming a “Destination Agency”. This “big picture” thinker must be community-minded and enterprising, with extensive experience implementing sustainable cost recovery efforts, and developing innovative revenue development strategies.
Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree in Recreation, Arts Administration, Human Development, Public Administration, or a related field. A master's degree is highly desirable. A minimum of six (6) years of professional and responsible experience developing and managing programs in recreation and the arts for special districts and/or local government, including at least three (3) years in a supervisory capacity. Certified Parks and Recreation Professional (CPRP) or Executive (CPRE) is a plus.