Featured in the Wall Street Journal’s travel section on unique places to visit in Oakland and touted by Buzzfeed as “The Most Amazing Place to take Kids” in California, Children’s Fairyland is the first storybook theme park in America. In 1950 a group of dedicated and visionary Oaklanders partnered with Oakland Park Superintendent, William Penn Mott, Jr., and garnered support from enthusiastic citizens to build the magical outdoor 10-acre theme park on the shores of Lake Merritt in the heart of Oakland.
Children’s Fairyland holds fast to its founding mission to “stimulate a young child’s creativity, imagination and desire to learn”. High touch and low tech, Fairyland’s 10 acres of landscaped gardens house 30 storybook sets, 18 gentle animals, four child-size rides, the longest-running professional puppet theater in the United States, a renowned children’s theater program, live performances, weekly Toddler Storytime, hands-on science programs, summer day camp, a retail store, a café, a horticulture program, and more. Though this enchanting family destination is geared for children aged 2-6 years old, it also has programs for children up to age 10. Fairyland is a learning laboratory for Oakland teachers who use field trips to increase reading and science readiness and complement in-school curriculum.
Each of our programs addresses one or more of Fairyland’s four pillars of education: Literacy, Science, Creativity, and Social/Emotional Development. Through our community outreach program, free or reduced admission is offered to over 16,000 children and families annually.
In 1994 Children’s Fairyland became a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization through a public/private partnership with the City of Oakland. Our operating budget is $3.5M and revenue is generated through memberships, admission fees, retail sales, program fees, and corporate, foundation, and individual gifts. https://fairyland.org/.
Our 12 Board Members are chosen through the Board and the Oakland City Administrator and Mayor.
The current Executive Director is stepping down after 17 years at the helm, and the Board is seeking an entrepreneurial, strategic, and operationally savvy leader. The Executive Director will have overall operational responsibility for Fairyland’s staff, financials, programs, strategy, fundraising, and execution of its mission.
Our organization is complex with multiple programs, revenue streams, and intrinsic relationships with the City of Oakland, community organizations, businesses, foundations, and donors. We are seeking a politically savvy community connector with strong business acumen, an entrepreneurial spirit, and deep experience in philanthropy.
To deepen Fairyland’s impact, retain its relevance, and drive growth, we will continue to focus on relationship cultivation, fund development, program expansion, team development, and operational effectiveness.
The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors and oversees a team of 33 full-time and part-time staff. Departments include: Operations, Program, Facilities, Development, Administration, Creative, Community Outreach and Education, and Events.
In addition to being thoroughly committed to Fairyland’s mission and having a respect for its history, all candidates will have proven leadership in growing a business or a nonprofit organization, fundraising, a strong customer service background, and relationship-building experience. Specific qualifications include:
To apply for this exciting opportunity, please click here https://ddavidson.com/searches/ All communications are confidential.
Children's Fairyland is an equal opportunity employer. We celebrate and support diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ability/disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. We highly encourage our diverse community to apply.