Visitor Services Manager (Naturalist II)

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Deadline to Apply:

Friday, May 6, 2022, 10:45pm


Fairfax, VA
United States

Job Category:


Job Type:


Job Description:

Join the  Fairfax County Park Authority and our nationally recognized team of professionals! The Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA) is seeking a Visitor Services Manager to be a part of one of the most highly regarded park systems in the country. With more than 25,000 acres of parkland, nine RECenters, eight golf courses, three lakefront parks, and more, FCPA is an exciting organization to be a part of and there are many opportunities for staff to make a difference at every level. Huntley Meadows Park and Historic Huntley, Fairfax County Park Authority sites and a part of the Resource Management Division, are located in the Alexandria/Hybla Valley area in Northern Virginia. At 1,559 acres, Huntley Meadows is one of the largest natural resource parks in the DC area. Situated on the coastal plain, it consists of forest, meadows, streams and a 50-acre non-tidal wetland with a boardwalk and observation tower. Managed as a wildlife sanctuary, center for environmental education and site for passive/nature-related recreation, this public park receives 200,000 visitors a year and is one of the most popular wildlife-watching sites in the area. The 19th Century architectural gem, Historic Huntley, was built for Thomson Francis Mason, the grandson of George Mason. Adorned with main house and outbuildings the site is open for tours, programs, and rentals.

The Park Authority is seeking an experienced professional to serve as the park's Visitor Services Manager (Naturalist II). Under supervision of the Park Manager, their primary responsibilities are visitor and facility management, management of the site's interpretation and exhibits, management of the park's finances, and personnel management and supervision. Activities and responsibilities include: operating a visitor center and related services/facilities, assisting with park-wide operations, managing historical buildings and operations, managing the site's interpretation, exhibit/display care and creation, facility inspections and related work orders, assisting with planning and execution of events and programs, assisting with natural and cultural resource projects, managing all sales, rentals and financial transactions, preparing administrative reports and plans, regular budget exercises and record keeping, office management, management of weekend and volunteer program staff, safety/security training and inspections, human resource functions, and assisting with outreach and advertising. Position may require some evening and/or weekend work. This position is one of the Park Authority's emergency personnel positions and is on call for alarms. 

Illustrative Duties(The illustrative duties listed in this specification are representative of the class but are not an all-inclusive list. A complete list of position duties and unique physical requirements can be found in the position job description.) 

  • Directs all aspects of visitor/nature center including staffing, facility use, security, safety, resource protection, visitor control, operating procedures and hours of operation, and procurement of supplies, equipment and services;
  • Assists site manager in the research, writing, implementation and evaluation of the site's annual operational plan, project plans, prospectus and interpretive plan, including goals and objectives for delivering programs and services;
  • Plans, develops and executes an interpretive management program for the nature center;
  • Responds to visitor, telephone and staff inquiries concerning natural and cultural history and conservation matters;
  • Investigates and responds to citizen complaints and concerns;
  • Assists in the development of and accounting for the site annual budget, including donated funds;
  • Supervises submission of cash reports and required reporting of management indicators such as visitation, program numbers, and project accounting;
  • Recruits, interviews, selects, trains, supervises, sets priorities and work schedules, assigns projects and evaluates paid and volunteer staff;

Required Knowledge Skills and Abilities (The knowledge, skills and abilities listed in this specification are representative of the class but are not an all-inclusive list.) 

  • Knowledge of the natural and biological sciences including the theory, principles and practices of interpretation and environmental education;
  • Knowledge of the principles, methods and practices of park management;
  • Ability to provide technical resource and program leadership to naturalist staff;
  • Ability to perform effective administrative work including budgeting, human resource management, purchasing, and the development of short and long range operational plans;
  • Ability to manage and operate interpretation/conservation programs at a site;
  • Ability to manage paid and volunteer staff engaged in professional naturalist and technical support positions;
  • Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing;
  • Ability to deal effectively with citizen inquiries and complaints;
  • Ability to develop and maintain relationships with the community and organizations concerned with environmental, natural, cultural and wildlife matters;

Employment Standards


  • Any combination of education, experience, and training equivalent to the following: (Click on the aforementioned link to learn how Fairfax County interprets equivalencies for “Any combination, experience, and training equivalent to”)
  • Graduation from an accredited college or university with a bachelor's degree in natural or life sciences, natural history, park management, education, or a closely related field; plus, two years of progressively responsible experience in conservation management, environmental education, interpretation, park programming, or a closely related field.


Driver's License


  • All newly hired employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (two weeks after the last required dose) as a condition of employment or obtain approval of a medical or religious exemption prior to their start date. Proof of an exemption or vaccination status will be required during the pre-employment onboarding process. New employees who obtain an exemption from the vaccine mandate for medical or sincerely held religious beliefs may be subject to a weekly testing requirement. Vaccinated employees and employees with a medical or religious exemption will complete the attestation online on their first day of employment or shortly thereafter.

 The appointee to this position will be required to complete a criminal background check, child protective services registry check, and driver's record check to the satisfaction of the employer.  

Knowledge of local natural and cultural history. Experience in planning, coordinating and conducting natural and/or cultural history interpretive programs. Experience writing interpretative exhibits, blogs and/or brochures. Knowledge of or experience in caring for historical buildings and artifacts. Experience operating a visitor center/nature center. Experience with financial management, analysis, and budgets. Experience supervising paid and/or volunteer staff. Ability to work well with the public and colleagues. Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing. Proficient with Microsoft Office Suite, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Professional NAI certification.

Ability to stand, sit, walk on rough, uneven terrain on park trails. Ability to work in varying weather conditions. Ability to lift 25lbs. All duties may be performed with or without reasonable accommodations.

Panel interview and may include exercise.
Fairfax County Government prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, age, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetics, political affiliation, or military status in the recruitment, selection, and hiring of its workforce.  
Reasonable accommodations are available to persons with disabilities during application and/or interview processes per the Americans with Disabilities Act. Contact 703-324-4900 for assistance. TTY 703-222-7314. EEO/AA/TTY.