Executive Director

Seeking a passionate Executive Director to join the world-renowned Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek, California! The Ruth Bancroft Garden is a 3.5-acre nonprofit public garden known for its stunning dry garden design and exceptional plant collection. The E.D. is responsible for overseeing the Garden’s mission to preserve and develop its exceptional collection of water-conserving plants and garden design for the enjoyment and education of the public.

The Garden has 40+ employees and experiences over forty thousand visitors per year, featuring a robust retail Nursery, and a membership of over seven thousand which has tripled over the past five years. The Garden also features many private events, over 80 multi-varied education classes, two-month summer sculpture show, and a six-week winter light show. Revenues are in the mid-seven figures and have been growing at over 20% per year. The E.D. is expected to continue this growth.

General Responsibilities

The E.D. will motivate an excellent staff to engage the general public, grow membership, and increase its donor and volunteer base. The E.D. must have strong analytical skills, which necessitate a strong proficiency in systems that aid analysis and reporting. The E.D. must have strong public relations and general marketing and social media skills to highlight the Garden. The E.D. is expected to foster community relationships and heighten the Garden’s visibility.

The E.D.’s primary financial duties are increasing memberships, donations, plant sales, design services, and event revenues while managing costs. Membership has grown over the past five years, and the E.D. is expected to maintain and continue this growth. The E.D. will be responsible for establishing a robust donation and grant program, which currently comprise a small percent of revenue. Other financial responsibilities include budgeting and the ability to convey financial objectives and reporting to the staff and the Board of Directors.

The E.D. will ensure effective collaboration with staff by recognizing and encouraging staff strengths and abilities to meet the goals of fulfilling the Garden’s mission by promoting a safe, creative, dynamic and diverse work environment.


  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, preferably with major course work in business administration and management, public administration, marketing, or related fields, and ten years experience in senior management.
  • Strong financial management skills, including budget preparation, analysis, decision-making, and reporting.
  • A background in sales and sales management is essential.
  • A history of successfully generating new revenue streams and improving financial results.
  • Understands the processes of effective fundraising systems and works collaboratively with Board and staff members to achieve the Garden’s financial goals. Has experience building durable and effective relationships with funders and donors. Has success in personally raising funds.
  • Knowledge of and passion for plants would be a plus.
  • Proven supervisory skills in recruiting and coaching staff.
  • Exceptional organizational abilities, including planning, delegating, and development.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills with successful public speaking experience.
  • Strong work ethic with the ability to work a flexible schedule.
  • Experience in social media and other internet advertising.

Salary: $150,000.00 – $175,000.00 per year

Benefits: 401(k). Health, vision, and dental insurance. Paid time off.

To apply, please send your resume and a cover letter to edsearch@rbglist.org