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Supervisor-Camp, Overnight & Family Programs, Hamill Family Play Zoo

Organization: The Chicago Zoological Society (AZA Member)
Location: Brookfield, IL, Country
Job or Internship: Job

This position contributes to the success of the Chicago Zoological Society by providing an extraordinary guest experience and creating innovation in conservation leadership and animal welfare by connecting children, youth, and families to wildlife and nature through zoo camps, overnight programs and Zoo World Patch (ZWP) program and operations of the Hamill Family Play Zoo.


Oversee implementation of CZS camp and overnight programs. Collaborate effectively with CET staff and outside resources for curriculum development and review. Responsible for recruiting, hiring, training, and supervising seasonal camp and overnight staff. Provide logistical and content support for camp and overnight staff, and act as liaison between camp staff and other CZS staff. Ensure high performance standards in the measurement and quality of guest service excellence, workplace quality, employee engagement, and American Camping Association standards. Implement CZS learning strategy. Supervise, oversee, and direct the activities of assigned Family Play Program crew in the performance of their duties and responsibilities related to the daily guest experience and daily operation of the Hamill Family Play Zoo exhibit and the implementation of the CZS NatureStart initiative. Ensure high performance standards in the measurement and quality of guest service excellence, workplace quality, employee engagement, implementation of the CZS learning strategy and NatureStart initiative. Accurately track and report all program costs, expenditures, and progress toward revenue goals to manager. Make ongoing proactive and effective recommendations for enhancing net revenues and program capacity building to ensure program revenue goals are achieved. Coordinate with Manager, NatureStart Program, and the CZS Development Department to develop fundraising proposals and other revenue-generating initiatives. Coordinate the ZWP program for youth groups, including program registration, logistical support for program participants and staff, order program supplies, assist with marketing techniques, and develop and update new and existing Patch programs and related materials. Provide content resources for intergenerational nature play and participate on the Family Nature Play training team. Other related duties as required to ensure successful achievement of departmental, group, and institutional goals and objectives.


Bachelor's degree in Liberal Arts, Science, Fine Arts, Drama, Interpretation, Early Childhood Education, Environmental Education or relevant field, or equivalent combination of relevant training and experience required. Academic or professional experience in early childhood education theory and literature is preferred. Minimum 2 years relevant experience as a camp counselor, supervisor, or director required. Experience with an American Camping Association (ACA) accredited camp preferred. Minimum 2 years experience with staff supervision required. Must have the ability to effectively oversee and motivate staff and foster a positive work environment. Minimum 2 years experience working with teens or young adults required. Minimum 2 years relevant experience in the planning, development, management, facilitation, or evaluation of activities for children aged birth-middle school or families. Experience with educational program documentation and evaluation preferred. A genuine interest in nature, animals, and children required. Must possess a strong interest in nature programming for children aged birth-middle school and their families. Must have an interest and passion for conservation, biological diversity, and the natural world. Must be comfortable with and able to safely handle a variety of live animals. Computer proficiency with Windows, Microsoft Outlook Word, and Excel required. PowerPoint and other Office software experience preferred. Experience with database packages essential. 1 year experience with financial/budget tracking and reporting required. Entrepreneurial experience highly desired, particularly with managing income and expenses, increasing net revenue, and delivering a superb product. Must possess excellent written and verbal communication skills as well as strong organizational skills. Must have excellent interpersonal and communications skills. Must have an interest in working with a multi-disciplinary team as well as independently. Excellent team building and staff training skills and experience with team leadership and/or project management preferred. Must be eager and capable of delivering excellent customer service. Must be eager to develop a business approach where net revenue and customer service are of paramount importance. Must posses a genuine interest for hands-on, learner-centered, and inquiry-based approaches to learning. Experience in an informal learning environment (museum, zoo, aquarium, and nature center) preferred. Excellent play facilitation skills and a strong ability to communicate effectively required with children aged birth-middle school of diverse backgrounds along with their caregivers. Creative skills/abilities such as musician, actor, dancer, artist, gardener, farmer, naturalist, craftsman, costumer designer/seamstress or other skills that can be integrated into the learning experience are a plus. Must be able to read, write, and speak the English language fluently. Experience and/or ability to work and interact effectively with a diverse, multicultural audience. Multi-lingual ability and Spanish fluency a plus. Valid driver’s license required. Illinois residents must possess a valid Illinois license within 90 days of hire. Valid out-of-state license required for out-of-state residents.


This position requires attendance at events, trainings, conferences, etc., held at off-site locations (some travel may be required). Incumbent routinely required to work rotating shifts including weekends, holidays, and evenings. Normal work weeks in excess of 40 hours are not unusual. Must be willing to work indoors and outdoors in a variety of weather conditions.

If interested in being considered for this opportunity, please email your resume/cover letter noting position title and ID#979AW in subject line and in your cover letter to: For more information about our organization and career opportunities please visit our website at

The Chicago Zoological Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer/Affirmative Action Employer – M/F/V/D – Diversity candidates encouraged to apply and identify themselves.