• Youth Development Director

    Job Locations US-IL-Niles
    Leaning Tower YMCA
    Youth Development
    Variable Schedule
    Monday-Friday | Some weekends may be required
  • Overview

    Job Summary and Key Accountabilities

    The Youth Development Director is accountable for ensuring that the early learning and youth development programs including summer camp, drop-in childcare, before-and-after school care, and teen programming accomplish program objectives and meet the needs of the youth and families we serve in accordance with all applicable licensing and funding regulations. The role is responsible for optimizing program enrollment and revenue, managing program expenses, enhancing the member/participant experience and member retention through , developing staff and ensuring a safe environment for all members, participants and staff.


    Scope of Responsibilities:


      Member Experience and Program Management

    • Increases member/participant connection and commitment to YMCA programs and ensures the member/participant experience is consistent, integrated and aligned to YMCA goals for member experience, engagement and retention. 
    • Addresses members’ and prospective members’ inquiries. Identifies and promotes key drivers of a successful member experience. Adapts and creates tools and processes to enhance member experience. 
    • Monitors program registration goals to understand trends and identify means for development. Adapts and customizes program portfolio to meet community needs. Optimizes program capacity and enrollment goals.
    • Participates in special events and activities at the center and within the community.
    • Promotes programs in the community through multiple channels.
    • Plans community engagement strategy. This includes collaborating with peers and leaders in and outside the Y.
    • Coordinates with membership/contact center to ensure all collections, refunds and other transactions are completed accurately and timely.
    • Participates in direct service as needed to facilitate program operations.

      Team Management

    • Identifies, manages and motivates a high-performing team that accomplishes program objectives 
    • Coaches and mentors staff to support them in delivering safe, engaging and well-organized program services. Completes formal staff evaluations for performance reviews. Provides corrective coaching and intervention as necessary. 
    • Accountable for hiring and terminating staff 
    • Trains new staff and provides ongoing trainings in accordance with training designs. Facilitates all-staff meetings and in-services. Responsible for ensuring staff are compliant with required trainings and certifications. 
    • Recruits and trains volunteers to meet the needs of the programs. Evaluates volunteer work and strategy to ensure volunteers are used appropriately.
    • Approves time worked by staff in Human Resources Information System.

      Fiscal and Risk Management

    • Manages program budget, including revenue and expenses, to meet financial targets and monitor financial performance and ensures program safety and compliance according to program standards. 
    • Responsible for the delivery of revenue, expenses and margin. Reports on budget performance on a quarterly basis. Provides key input to develop budget.
    • Oversees maintenance of table files, program guides and online registration site to ensure accurate information is advertised. 
    • Works to keep facilities safe, clean and inviting by adhering to association standards. Promotes the value of keeping the center welcoming and safe with staff.
    • Identifies, escalates and rectifies potential risks that could threaten the safety, health or well-being of members, participants or employees. 
    • Supports the YMCA’s mission and center operations as needed.


    Child Abuse Prevention:

    Supports the YMCA’s commitment to child abuse prevention by:

    • Reporting any items that may provide a health or safety hazard to staff, members or guests to your supervisor
    • Following all policies and procedures related to keeping children safe in our facilities and programs, including those related to the monitoring and supervision of children
    • Reporting any suspicious behavior and violation of policy and procedures to your supervisor
    • Completing all child abuse prevention training as required


    Commitment to Inclusion:

    Supports the YMCA’s commitment to inclusion of all members as required by Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Job responsibilities may include implementing program modifications for persons with cognitive, behavioral or physical disabilities, including but not limited to the injection of medical glucagon to members with Type 1 diabetes in emergency situations. Appropriate training and development will be provided to YMCA team members based on your role and responsibilities.  



    • Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent or higher in Elementary Education, Recreation Management, Early Childhood Education or a related field with a minimum of 21 college semester hours in courses related to Early Childhood Education or Childhood Development. Youth Development Directors overseeing programming that only serves school-age children are required to have a minimum of 21 college semester hours in courses related to child care and/or child development, elementary education, physical education, recreation, camping or other related fields
    • 3 to 5 years or more of experience working directly with youth in an early learning and/or school-age program and at least 3 years of experience managing staff that interact with youth. 
    • Must be at least 21 years of age and/or 5 years older than the oldest child that participates in the program
    • Type 03 or 04 IL Teacher Certification preferred
    • ExceleRate IL Director Credential Level 1 or higher preferred; must be obtained once in role
    • Commitment to, and a passion for, the YMCA of Metro Chicago’s mission.
    • Demonstrated ability to accomplish goals through others, whether direct reports or through influence.
    • Strategic thinking skills including effective planning, setting goals, monitoring progress, tracking results and making appropriate adjustments to plans based on circumstances and context.
    • Ability to organize and prioritize multiple, competing priorities to maximize personal and team effectiveness.
    • Budget and expense management experience, with the ability to assist in managing budgets to plan.
    • Customer service orientation, with the ability to effectively communicate on a regular basis with internal customers, build relationships, manage customer expectations and take responsibility for a high level of service.
    • Demonstrated interpersonal skills with the ability to effectively build and maintain relationships with customers, team members and other stakeholders and constituents. 
    • Intermediate proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel), email; ability to learn and adapt to new technology.
    • Demonstrates evidence of YMCA Team Leader competencies in previous experience or practice.
    • Meet physical qualifications required as outlined in job description. The YMCA will provide reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities.

    Be a part of our mission.

    The mission of the YMCA of Metro Chicago is to develop strong children, families and communities across Metropolitan Chicago through academic readiness, character development, violence prevention, fitness and healthy living. We rely on the expertise, passion, commitment and energy of our instructors and other team members to help us achieve our mission one child, one family and one team member at a time.


    Our programs create a child-centered environment that promotes learning, character development, healthy living and positive, nurturing relationships. With a commitment to meeting quality and accreditation standards and extensive training and professional development in research-based practices, you’ll learn and grow and positively our children, families and communities.


    Provides a safe, engaging, and nurturing environment for children that supports their overall development. Requires committed individuals who want to make a difference in the lives of children and their families. Responsible for ensuring program quality including implementing curriculum that meets the needs of all children and families.


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