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Sarah P Duke Gardens-Director of Community Engagement-Thu, 01/13/2022 - 11:17am

Director of Community Engagement


Sarah P Duke Gardens
420 Anderson Street Campus Box 90341
Durham , NC 27708-0341
United States
North Carolina US

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Job Description 

Sarah P. Duke Gardens at Duke University is seeking a Director of Community Engagement to join its leadership team. Duke Gardens encourages candidates from underrepresented identities and experiences to apply.

The director of community engagement provides leadership, development and daily oversight of community programs and visitor services for all of Duke Gardens’ audiences, including local schools, adults, families, the visiting public, and Duke University students, faculty and staff.

Reporting to the executive director, the person in this role will ensure that engagement programs support and extend the mission and goals of Sarah P. Duke Gardens and reflect an understanding of historic and contemporary inequities in our community, as part of identifying Duke Gardens’ role in addressing those inequities. These programs will include partnerships with people and communities that bring a variety of perspectives, goals and history to the Gardens.

Duties & Responsibilities 

Provide leadership and a culture of support and growth for the community engagement team of full and part-time employees. Develop priorities and goals for community partnerships, on-site and off-site education programs, volunteers, visitor services and interpretation. Implement systems to build capacity and collaboration.

Engage with community groups to build partnerships that meet everyone’s goals and aspirations. Expand public understanding of the Gardens as a place of beauty, respite, belonging and learning. Be an active participant in community networks and gatherings, assessing community interests and connecting communities to Duke Gardens.

Provide oversight for program development, delivery and evaluation, including managing registration software, instructor contracts, online newsletter content and program promotion.

Recruit program instructors and participants to reflect a full range of Duke Gardens’ communities, particularly those with identities that have historically not been included.

Collaborate with Gardens staff members from all departments to further organizational, professional, horticultural, development, membership, interpretation and marketing goals.

Direct various personnel actions including, but not limited to, hiring, performance appraisals, and vacation schedules. Establish program budget to build towards a sustainable program. Identify up to date and emerging technological solutions to serve program management needs.

The above statements describe the general nature and level of work performed. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required.

Education and Experience 


Work requires communication, analytical and organizational skills generally acquired through completion of a bachelor’s degree program. Masters degree in a related field preferred.


Position requires a minimum of 5 years related experience.


Intermediate skills in Microsoft Office applications; experience in or ability to learn administrative and database systems (SAP R/3, Concur, Cvent, etc.)

Ability to work collaboratively across cultural differences.

Managing a team to set priorities, attain goals, and support individual professional development.

Strategic planning and implementation.

Meeting and workshop facilitation.

Ability to communication effectively, verbally and in writing, with a wide range of audiences, group sizes, formats, and content.

Commitment to growing relationships between people and plants.

Application Instructions 

Apply online at
Job Requisition #173363
Copy cover letter and resume only to

Sarah P. Duke Gardens welcomes more than 600,000 visitors each year, admission free. It is embedded in the center of Duke University’s campus, creating opportunities to welcome both university and visiting guests from local, regional, national and international locations.

Duke Gardens is committed to being a welcoming place for all. As people who work with plants, we know the natural world is interdependent in multilayered ways. Living communities are supported and enriched by having diverse and healthy members, and caring for them is continuous, open-ended work. As we strive to better embrace and represent the full diversity of our community, we will collaborate with and learn from people who represent a spectrum of human experience. We welcome and encourage new relationships and dialogue as we build a more inclusive future together.

To learn more about Duke Gardens please visit us at

Full Name 
Bill LeFevre