National Recreation and Park Association
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National Recreation and Park Association Photos

Brambleton Fields Site on the grounds of the National Recreation and Parks Association headquarters (Photo thanks to Flickr user Argonaut15 All rights reserved.)
The Aherns Institute - NRPA HQ
NRPA headquarters after visit from Polar Vortex

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National Recreation and Park Association Reviews

16 Reviews
16 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Barbara Tulipane
13 Ratings
  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Management by Whim

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at National Recreation and Park Association full-time


    Facility - As other reviewers have mentioned, the building is lovely and also lovingly maintained, with walking trail, workout room and showers, and plenty of conference rooms.

    Staff - Most coworkers below the VP level are genuinely nice people. Frequent staff events like lunches and golf outings help lighten the stressful atmosphere.

    Benefits - Benefits are OK. There are better and there are worse in the Washington nonprofit world.

    Mission - Parks and recreation is a fun and broad field that touches on a lot of important quality of life issues.


    Location - People who have worked in livelier places like DC, Bethesda, or Alexandria will find the subdivisions of Ashburn soul-sucking. There is no access to public transportation and both the Greenway and Dulles Toll Road tolls are quite high.

    Management - In a field where members fight for recognition of their professionalism, little regard for the professional skill of their own staff is evident at NRPA. The staff is a constantly shifting cast of expendable employees who can be either rotated on and off projects or dismissed on a whim. When short-term thinking and associated under-budgeting for projects fails to produce results, the team of mostly unqualified, toady VPs doesn't hesitate to throw their staff under the bus in order to save their skins from the CEO, a notorious bully. Neither popularity nor productivity (or even having both) will save you. The reviews here may seem like just a few disgruntled employees, but in fact they represent just a small fraction of the number of people with similar experiences.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Some board members seem to be aware of the high turnover and ADHD approach to priorities. Although NRPA's history suggests that decisive action is unlikely, one can always hope that they may notice that such poor management is leading to a lot of missed opportunities.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO