The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that there were more than 165,000 full-time employees of local park and recreation agencies throughout the United States in 2020 and several hundred thousand more part-time and seasonal workers. It is these skilled teams that program events, maintain facilities and otherwise ensure that every member of a community can access and enjoy all that their local park and recreation agencies have to offer.

Comprehensive compensation data provide park and recreation agency leaders with guidance on how to attract the best staff. Such data also can provide park and recreation professionals with insights about salary and benefits being offered by potential employers. To amass that data, the Research team of the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) sent a 34-question survey in March 2021 to elicit not only the salary data of 10 positions at park and recreation agencies, but also general information about benefits and salary policies. The responses from leaders of nearly 450 park and recreation agencies across the United States are the basis of this report.

The 2021 NRPA Park and Recreation Salary Survey report features detailed base salary and bonus data for 10 typical park and recreation agency positions:

  • Park and Recreation Agency Director (or Executive Director or Superintendent)
  • Planning Director (or Superintendent)
  • Director of Finance (or Administrative Director or Business Manager)
  • Recreation Director (or Recreation Superintendent or Assistant Director – Recreation)
  • Park Operations Director (or Maintenance Director or Maintenance Superintendent)
  • Park Operations (or Maintenance Foreman)
  • Facilities Manager
  • Athletics Supervisor (or Athletics Manager)
  • Aquatics Supervisor (or Aquatics Manager)
  • Recreation Programs Coordinator (or Recreation Program Manager)


Summarized Salary Survey Report

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