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Director of Visitor Services
Category: Visitor Services

Cantigny Park
Wheaton, Illinois

Posted: Thursday, August 7, 2014

Director of Visitor Services

Cantigny Park

Cantigny Park, one of the Chicago area’s most popular recreation and education destinations located in Wheaton, Illinois, seeks a Director of Visitor Services. As home to both the First Division Museum and the Robert R. McCormick Museum, Cantigny Park cultivates more than 30 acres of spectacular gardens and hosts - special events, concerts, lectures and workshops throughout the year.

Cantigny Park is the former home of Colonel Robert R. McCormick, longtime editor and publisher of theChicago Tribune. As a teenager, Colonel McCormick visited Red Oaks Farm, owned by his grandfather Joseph Medill. McCormick inherited the grand estate, renaming it “Cantigny” to commemorate his experience during the Battle of Cantigny, France; the first American victory of World War I.  When he died in 1955, his will established the Robert R. McCormick Charitable Trust and designated Cantigny as a public space for the education and recreation of the people of Illinois. . This extraordinary gift, now part of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, enriches our community every day and is enjoyed by more than 350,000 visitors each year.

The Director of Visitor Services will oversee hundreds of educational and recreational programs at Cantigny Park ranging in size from small club meetings to large festivals and concerts, all events that align with the organizational mission. The Director will coordinate and supervise security and visitor services for the park, developing and implementing policies and procedures to ensure the protection and safety of all visitors and staff. As a valued member of Cantigny Park management, the Director is key leader in maintaining and growing local and regional community connections to Cantigny by providing opportunities for learning, recreation and well-being.


Explore Cantigny online at

Roles and responsibilities:

  • Developing and scheduling recreational and educational programming for Cantigny Park visitors throughout the year.
  • Directing all aspects of the park’s membership and volunteer programs.
  • Supervising of the security operations for all current and proposed facilities and grounds, including the safety and protection of staff and visitors.
  • Supervising the operation of the Visitor Center and Gift Shop.
  • Overseeing the management of facility rental opportunities. 
  • Supervising the Cantigny Park annual concert series.
  • Working with the park Executive Director to review and evaluate requests from outside organizations interested in using park facilities.
  • Partnering with park Communications staff to develop marketing plans for programming.
  • Managing the department operating budget.
  • Maintaining inventory of equipment and supplies and contacting vendors for competitive bids, both within budgetary guidelines and purchasing policies.
  • Providing for the safety of all direct reporting staff members by: a) training staff in all applicable areas of safety training including but not limited to the usage of personal protective equipment, proper operation of tools/machinery, and proper handling of hazardous materials; b) documenting the safety training completed by their direct reports and coordinating the filing of such documentation with Human Resources; and c) the timely reporting of accidents/incidents involving their direct reports to the Cantigny Security department.
  • Supervising staff including the parks Security Manager, Education and Volunteer Coordinator, Visitor Center Manager and Special Activities Coordinator.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Parks and Recreation or related field preferred, advanced degree desired.
  • A minimum of 5 years supervisory experience.
  • Outstanding communications skills, verbal and written.
  • Must be analytical, innovative, strategic thinker and a collaborative business partner.
  • Must be trained in first aid, CPR and use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) or must become trained and maintain valid certification.
  • Must be available to work nights, weekends and holidays.
  • Must be on call when not on duty to respond to emergency situations.
  • Must attend approved professional development courses annually.

How to apply for this job: 
Interested applicants should submit a resume, cover letter, and salary requirements


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