The Institute at the Golden Gate is a program of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, the non-profit partner of the National Park Service. At the Institute, we envision a simple but revolutionary future for parks where their role goes beyond conservation and recreation to help solve complex human challenges. As a cornerstone of social innovation, parks become more valuable today and for future generations. Working closely with partner organizations, we identify unique opportunities to bring about change locally, regionally, and nationally.
Our current programs focus on parks as a tool for preventive health, a classroom for climate education, and a resource for critical urban issues like homelessness, income and racial inequity, and rapid development. The Institute is a small but dynamic group, with a global reach and a social entrepreneurship culture. We work hard to maintain an idea-driven, collaborative environment. For more information about the Institute at the Golden Gate, please visit our website: www.instituteatgoldengate.org.
Widespread decline in physical activity is resulting in increases in chronic disease and mental ill-health. At the same time, being active in nature has benefits beyond exercising in a built setting. Nature promotes physical and mental health, social cohesion, and general well-being. Studies show that benefits are even more pronounced for urban, low-income communities.
The Institute believes that parks and public lands are an underutilized, low-cost health resource that can and must be used to help solve the problem. Often available for free or low cost, parks are an important health tool for communities with some of the highest needs.
Since 2012, the Institute has worked at the intersection of health and parks to advance healthier communities and the Health Program Manager will lead the implementation and growth of this work. The Institute works at both the regional and national levels, providing backbone support for the Healthy Parks Healthy People: Bay Area and National ParkRx Initiative collaborations. These initiatives are collective impact programs that bring together over 50 health, park, and community agencies to advance the use of parks and nature to improve health and wellbeing. As the backbone support for these initiatives, the Health Program Manager will be responsible for partnership building and management; facilitating collaborative strategy development and implementation; managing collaborative communications and meeting coordination; and managing projects and initiatives in support of the collaborative goals.
The Health Program Manager will also be responsible for identifying and exploring new ways for the Institute to build and amplify the movement around parks and health. This will require gaining an in-depth knowledge of the current state of park and health programs nationwide, identifying gaps and opportunities, and strategically leverage the Institute’s existing strengths and program offerings. The Health Program Manager will develop and implement strategies that support our park and health partners in engaging and empowering new, diverse audiences to spend time in nature to improve the health of themselves, their community, and the planet.
The Program Manager will report directly to the Deputy Director.
Role and Responsibilities
The major functions of the position include:
- Program Development and Implementation: conceiving, strategizing, researching, designing, representing and implementing an Institute program that includes a variety of complementary projects relevant to the Institute’s mission.
- Partnership Development and Representing the Program Externally: developing program opportunities with other public, nonprofit and private partners – and serving as a liaison with all key partners. Also, working with Institute leadership to represent the program externally, including speaking, writing, meeting with potential supporters, influencing decision makers, helping build a communications strategy and community of practice, and other outward facing roles, etc.
- Operations Leadership: designing and overseeing program logistics, managing the evaluation of program metrics.
- Financial Responsibilities: planning, monitoring, and managing program budgets, actively contributing to fundraising and development efforts to ensure the program’s financial sustainability.
- Program Team Management: recruiting, supervising, and overseeing relevant staff, consultants, and fellows assigned to their program; currently the Health program team consists of 1 fulltime staff and 1-2 consultants, however this may change over time with program growth.