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Executive Director


Posted by National Ski Patrol on 09/09/2022

Job Basics

Industry Sector: Outdoor

Job Categories: Management - Executive

Company Type: Recreation

State: CO

City: Lakewood

Country: United States

Required Experience: 3 - 5 years

Job Type: Full Time

Salary: $125,000-$145,000

Required to Relocate: Yes

Required to Travel: Yes

Employee May Telecommute: No

Job Seeker Must Live Within: 50+ miles

Job Description & Requirements

The National Ski Patrol (NSP) Board of Directors seeks a brilliant, energetic leader to serve as Executive Director.  The NSP is a federally chartered, charitable, nonprofit corporation established in 1938.  As the leading authority on winter mountain safety, NSP is dedicated to serving the public and outdoor recreation industry by providing education and accreditation in outdoor emergency care and related disciplines.  NSP’s mission is to help keep people safe on the mountain and during other outdoor activities.


The Organization


A member-oriented organization, NSP offers high-caliber training in eight disciplines: Avalanche Sciences and Safety, emerging innovative Bike Patrols, Instructor Development, Mountain Travel and Rescue, Nordic/Backcountry, Outdoor Emergency Care, Outdoor Emergency Transportation, and Outdoor Risk Management.  Patrollers often begin their careers as candidate patrollers by completing Outdoor Emergency Care, an in-depth, outdoor-oriented emergency medical course.  Many patrollers pursue further training and become certified instructors in their disciplines.  NSP’s participation in the International Commission for Alpine Rescue (ICAR) and Fédération Internationale des Patrouilles de Ski (FIPS) ensures our curricula are current, relevant, and recognized worldwide standards.


NSP has over 31,000 volunteers and paid members, serving over 650 ski and bike patrols.  NSP members work on behalf of local outdoor recreation areas, including winter snow and summer sports areas, to promote safe recreation and to provide emergency care.  Supporting our members and mission are a staff of up to 22, not including contract and freelance support, with headquarters based in Lakewood, Colorado, with an annual budget of approximately $4 million.


The National Board of Directors comprises 13 NSP members elected by NSP’s membership.  All board members serve as volunteers and have term limits.  Like most NSP members, board members are passionate about patrolling and proud of NSP’s heritage.  In addition to managing dynamic standing and ad hoc committees, board members also play active roles in shaping the organization’s future.


Position Overview


The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors through the board chair.  The Executive Director leads the general operational aspects of the organization.  The Executive Director is one of the primary faces and voices of NSP and acts as a crucial brand ambassador representing the NSP as an industry leader in snow sports, outdoor recreation, safety, and education.  Responsibilities include the budget, staff management, membership programs, fundraising, sponsorships, and partnerships with allied organizations.



The Executive Director’s principal duties include the following:


·       Advocate for NSP and its mission.

·       Oversee the development and delivery of high-quality educational programs and processes for quality assurance.

·       Ensure that the NSP courses and certifications remain the benchmark or standard in the snow sports and outdoor recreation industry.

·       Ensure proper annual member registration, credentialing and record keeping.

·       Establish and maintain a modern technology strategy and system that serves the needs of the members and the organization.

·       Ensure the stability and sustainability of the organization, and manage the finances to maintain a balanced, strategically targeted budget.

·       Enhance the quality and diversity of NSP industry partners’ and sponsors’ experience with the NSP.

·       Attend and participate in board meetings and several standing and ad hoc committee meetings up to three times per week in the Mountain Time zone’s evenings – 6-8 pm.

·       Protect and enhance the value of the NSP brand by acting as an NSP brand ambassador/spokesperson, frequently participating in interviews with media and/or speaking at local and national outdoor recreation engagements.

·       Manage the administrative functions of the Lakewood office.

·       Maintain efficient infrastructure of the organization, promoting high staff morale and sound physical assets.

·       Promote a culture of customer service.

·       Foster an environment of diversity, equity, and inclusion within the national office and among NSP’s members.

·       Develop and execute initiatives and strategic directives as provided by the Board of Directors and ensure continuing progress toward accomplishing the goals and objectives of the NSP.


The ideal candidate for the position may possess:


·       Demonstrated leadership as an executive in a substantial member-oriented association.

·       A history of exceptional relationship-building skills with volunteers, employees, vendors, industry partners, and sponsors.

·       Ability to build rapport with an experienced working Board of Directors and provide administrative support to a robust volunteer leadership structure.

·       Experience in strategic and operational planning, overseeing the implementation of strategic objectives, and inspiring staff, board members, and stakeholders to collaborate toward that future.

·       Exceptional proven communication skills­­--verbal, written, public speaking, and presentation.








·       Bachelor’s degree required; relevant post-baccalaureate degree preferred.

·       Five to seven years of senior management experience in a range of leadership roles.

·       Experience in a progressive nonprofit organization with board-level reporting responsibilities.

·       Experience in, knowledge of, and passion for outdoor recreation.

·       Professional experience in the outdoor recreation industry, such as experience as a volunteer or career NSP member, is preferred.

·       Ability to travel throughout the United States and occasionally other countries to attend appropriate conferences, division meetings, and other NSP or industry-related events.

·       Demonstrated dedication to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion for NSP members, the outdoor industry, and the workplace.

·       Strong project management skills and track record of completing complex projects on time and on budget.

·       Understanding of business operations, leadership, and management principles including human resources, legal issues, accounting, finance, and facility management.


Other preferred qualifications include:


·       Experience in education and curriculum development.

·       Demonstrated ability to develop and retain corporate partnerships.

·       Media and press relations experience or training.

·       Proven ability in creating, leading, and managing fundraising efforts, including donations, grants, and sponsorships.




The salary range for this position is $125,000-$145,000 annually and will be competitive with salaries for executive leaders in similar nonprofit organizations, depending on background and experience.  NSP benefits include health insurance, 401(K), holidays, vacation, sick leave, a wellness benefit, and industry pro deals.


Application Process


To apply for this position, submit your resume and cover letter to Within your cover letter or resume, please provide a description of your qualifications related to the Position Summary and “ideal candidate” traits.  Screening of applications will begin without delay and continue until the position is filled.  The Board of Directors will ask for professional references after developing a short list of candidates.


The National Ski Patrol is an equal opportunity employer.  We encourage women, people of color, and members of other underrepresented groups to apply and to become part of the NSP community.

About National Ski Patrol

The nonprofit National Ski Patrol is the largest winter education organization in the world. The NSP provides education, outreach, and credentialing related to outdoor recreation and safety. It is currently composed of more than 31,000 members who serve in over 650 patrols.