1st Deputy Commissioner, Strategy & Engagement

  • 1515 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, USA
  • Full-time

Company Description

With a workforce of over 30,000 people, and opportunities in more than 1,000 different job categories, the City of Philadelphia is the fifth largest city in the United States and one of the largest employers in Southeastern Pennsylvania. As an employer, the City of Philadelphia operates through the guiding principles of service, integrity, respect, accountability, collaboration, diversity and inclusion. Through these principles, we strive to effectively deliver services, to resolve the challenges facing our city, and to make Philadelphia a place where all our residents have the opportunity to reach their potential. 

Agency Description:

Philadelphia Parks & Recreation (PPR) advances the prosperity of the city and the progress of her people through intentional and sustained stewardship of over 10,200 acres of public land and waterways as well as through hundreds of safe, stimulating recreation, environmental, and cultural centers. PPR promotes the well-being and growth of the City’s residents by connecting them to the natural world around them, to each other, and to fun, physical, and social opportunities. PPR is responsible for the upkeep of historically significant Philadelphia events and specialty venues, and works collaboratively with communities and organizations in leading capital projects and the introduction of inventive programming. To learn more about Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, visit us at www.phila.gov/parksandrec, and follow @philaparkandrec on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Tumblr.

Job Description

The 1st Deputy Commissioner will serve as a senior member of PPR’s Executive Team providing leadership for the strategy and engagement business units within the department, which include Communications, Business Development, Properties & Concessions, Special Events, Leadership Development & Training, and Performance Management.

This position will provide strategic direction and capacity to ensure that PPR is a high-performing, efficient, and responsive leader and partner both internally and externally to help advance its goals as well as those of the Kenney Administration.

Essential Functions: 

  • In close coordination with PPR Executive Team, oversee implementation of the Department’s first Strategic Plan “Path to 2020”, including execution of action plan, development of working groups; analysis of metrics and performance measures. The strategic plan calls for significant departmental reforms including: the development of new program standards, redistricting and realignment of staff, overhaul of capital projects, operations, and maintenance processes, and enhanced customer service and civic engagement efforts.
  • Represent PPR in collaborations with city agency partners on strategic policy initiatives such as Out of School Time (OST), City as a Model Employer, Civic Engagement, Youth Based Sports Development, Vison Zero, Greenworks 2.0, Green City Clean Waters, Zero Waste and Litter
  • Lead the development of individual and place-based partnerships to enhance PPR’s ability to engage with individuals, civic and nonprofit groups, and businesses to support departmental staff and resources.
  • Provide leadership for the Communications team to promote and increase awareness for PPR’s programs and services, explore new communications tools through the expanded use of technology and social media.
  • Develop plans and strategies to secure funding from earned revenue as well as local and national funders for new initiatives aligned to the priorities of PPR and the Administration.
  • Lead the development and implementation of staff/volunteer initiatives to help build organizational and leadership capacity.
  • Oversee effective performance monitoring programs which include, performance goals, valid and reliable performance measures, and effective improvement activities including meetings, capacity development, technical assistance, and recognition.


  • Completion of a Bachelor’s degree program at an accredited college or university with a major course work in Public Administration, Communications, Business Management, Organization Development or a closely related field, advanced degree preferred
  • 5 to 7 years of local government experience, with at least 3 years of senior-level leadership experience
  • Any equivalent combination of education and experience determined to be acceptable by Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Human Resources
Competencies, Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
  • Ability to work within a local government environment and with multiple stakeholders and partner organizations. 
  • Evaluative and innovative thinking skills and judgment to formulate and coordinate organization wide strategy, vision and direction.
  • A thorough understanding of various performance improvement methodologies, frameworks, and approaches
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with associates, departmental officials, outside consultants and vendors.
  • Presentation skills, strategic thinking, and high professional ethics.
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and fair treatment
  • Willingness to address challenges and drive innovation.
  • Outstanding oral and written communication skills.
  • Ability to handle a complex and varied workload and manage internal and external deadlines across the organization.
  • Ability to adapt to changing priorities and exhibit flexibility
  • Proficient in computer software applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Program Management Software, etc.)

Additional Information

Successful candidates must be a city of Philadelphia resident within six months of hire.

 Interested candidates must submit a resume and cover

The City of Philadelphia is an Equal Opportunity employer and does not permit discrimination based on race, ethnicity, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, marital status, source of income, familial status, genetic information or domestic or sexual violence victim status. If you believe you were discriminated against, call the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations at 215-686-4670 or send an email to faqpchr @phila.gov. For more information, go to: Human Relations Website: http://www.phila.gov/humanrelations/Pages/default.aspx