Park Equity Accelerator Fellow

Park Equity Accelerator Fellow

Start Date: May 2024
Term/Time Commitment: 1 year, full time
Compensation: $60,000
Location: Boston (hybrid)

Trust for Public Land (TPL) is seeking a Park Equity Accelerator Fellow who is passionate about elevating the role of local parks and open space in addressing some of the most critical health, climate, and equity challenges facing communities today. The Fellow will play a key role in Trust for Public Land’s 10-Minute Walk®  Park Equity Accelerator in Boston, which focuses on increasing access to parks and greenspace with Boston Housing Authority (BHA). This project involves community-centered planning work, data collection and analysis, and building partnerships with residents, public agencies, and other partners. The Fellow will also support local on-the-ground projects in Boston, develop communications materials, and assist with other research and technical assistance  tasks as necessary. This role will work directly with local governmental and non-governmental park organizations to help improve park equity for Bostonians. 

The Fellow will report to TPL’s 10-Minute Walk Associate Director for Technical Assistance, and work with staff from across TPL, including  TPL’s 10-Minute Walk team, Massachusetts State Office, and Land and People Lab. This position is a yearlong fellowship.

A core goal of the Park Equity Accelerator Fellowship is to provide opportunities for early career professional development for those interested in entering the world of urban parks. Professional development opportunities will include:

  • Networking opportunities to meet and collaborate with park and recreation and other municipal staff in Boston and across the country.

  • Coaching and individualized professional development.

  • Developing a strong understanding of the key strategies to elevate the importance of city parks.

About the Organization:
At the Trust for Public Land, we don't just save land—we save land for people to enjoy, from neighborhood parks to national parks. Our mission is to create parks and protect land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come. Every park, playground, and public space we create is an open invitation to explore, wonder, discover, and play. We're proud to say that we've been connecting communities to the outdoors—and to each other—since 1972. Today, millions of Americans live within a 10-minute walk of a park or natural area we helped create, and countless more visit every year. TPL’s 10-Minute Walk, an award-winning national program, is engaging city leaders to close the park equity divide so that every resident has access to a quality park or greenspace within a 10-minute walk of home. The Land and People Lab leads ParkServe - the only parks database and online tool for 14,000 places across the U.S., TPL's ParkScore index - the national gold-standard comparison of park systems across the 100 most populated cities in the US, and conducts actionable parks research, conducted hand-in-hand with U.S. cities.

The Boston Parks for People program works to accomplish the 10-Minute Walk® mission and advance park equity in Boston and the Gateway Cities. We have five ongoing climate-smart parks in Dorchester, Hyde Park, Mattapan, and Roslindale. The projects range from a neighborhood community gathering space, a food forest park, a climate resilient schoolyard, a riverfront trail park, and a playground and community open space at a Boston Housing Authority site. With a focus on equity, health, and climate, we collaborate closely with residents, community groups, non-profits, public partners, and others to ensure that parks provide multiple benefits to those who need them most.

Boston Park Equity Accelerator (50%)

  • In coordination with TPL’s 10-Minute Walk® Accelerator leads, serve as liaison between Boston Housing Authority and 10-Minute Walk on local Park Equity Accelerator project.

  • Lead trainings on data collection with BHA  residents and other local stakeholders.

  • Manage on-the-ground data collection efforts in partnership with BHA.

  • Conduct data collection activities at Boston Housing Authority properties.

  • Support data cleaning and quality assurance/control.

  • Other duties as assigned, including other support for the 10-Minute Walk® program outside of the Boston Park Equity Accelerator.

Massachusetts Park Equity Project Support (25%)

  • Assist with coordinating and staging activities and special events to engage and educate community groups, institutions, and the public around issues such as local solutions to climate risks, environmental and social equity, park design, and outdoor recreation.

  • Conduct park evaluations using SOPARC and other measures.

  • Assist in site analysis, feasibility studies, project impact reports on potential new projects.

  • Produce supporting graphics, flyers, memos, maps, and imagery for projects.

  • Attend partner, stakeholder, and other meetings, under guidance of program staff.

  • Maintaining project-related data and writing copy for proposals, reports, and grants.

  • Help plan and conduct community facilitation activities.

Communications Support (15%)

  • Create one story per quarter that highlights the work and impact of the Boston project. Stories can be in the form of articles, snapshots, social media posts, podcasts, videos, or photo-based projects. Story ideas and format will be developed in collaboration with the Boston and TPL team.

  • Take and collect photos, videos, quotes that represent the work of the Boston project.

  • Secure all necessary photo and quote permissions, and provide TPL with copies of signed agreements and collateral.

Professional Development (10%)

  • Developing and completing a discrete parks research project of interest to you and of import to the parks field at large.

  • Career development coaching, including mentor meetings, resume and cover letter review.

  • Opportunities to meet with other professionals within TPL and external subject matter experts.

  • Exposure to and training on leading-edge issues in the urban parks world.

  • Attend select urban parks events and/or conferences.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Interest and curiosity in urban greenspaces and their impact on community wellbeing.

  • Professional or lived experience working with public housing residents.

  • Professional or academic experience with urban planning and/or landscape architecture.

  • Ability to work from TPL Boston (6 Beacon St #615, Boston, MA 02108) office at least one day a week (approximately).

  • Experience with ESRI products including ArcGIS Pro and Survey123.

  • Experience collecting and cleaning survey data.

  • Excellent writing and communication skills, including effectively writing for and use of social media.

  • Detail-oriented and organized.

  • Must be a team player; motivated and willing  to work both independently and in a collaborative environment.

  • Willingness to adapt and remain flexible as projects and priorities change.

  • Basic computer skills and working knowledge of Microsoft Office programs.

  • Access to a reliable Wi-Fi connection, as this is a hybrid position with part time in the Boston office and part time from home.

  • Applicant must have the ability to work and interact effectively with individuals and groups with a variety of identities, cultures, backgrounds, and ideologies.