Recreation Specialist - Aquatics
Indio, CA

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Indio, CA 92201
United States

Job Start Date
Manages Others
Experience Required
Degree Required
Security Clearance Required
From $53,713
Per Year    
Employment Type
Work Schedule
Full Time
Some Travel
Job Description


DEFINITION: Under the direction of the Community Services Supervisor, the Aquatic Specialist will organize and supervise a comprehensive aquatics program for the community, which includes the development and management of group and private swimming lesson programs, managing pool schedules of lifeguards, swim instructors and swim aides; develop a comprehensive and evolving staff training curriculum; lead aquatic staff trainings and develop a variety of aquatic programs that enhance community safety, health and wellness.


Supervision Received AND/OR Exercised: Under general supervision of the Community Services Supervisor, exercises direct and indirect supervision over program participants. Provides direction to upward of 60 part-time aquatic staff.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES & RESPONSIBILITIES include the following. Other duties may be assigned.


  • Performs a variety of tasks in the creation, implementation and evaluation of specialized aquatics programs and services in an assigned recreational area or activity.
  • Teaches and instructs participants in activities which require specialized skills and training.
  • Schedules, supervises, trains and develops aquatic staff
  • Makes hiring and staffing recommendations
  • Evaluates the full range of pool operations (i.e., rotation, ordinance enforcement, vigilance, staff performance, signage, hazards, etc.)
  • Prepares reports and recommendations on the basis of evaluated data and information
  • Provides reliable, effective lifeguard service and medical equipment to the field
  • Works effectively with other District staff to coordinate service delivery
  • Evaluates medical, rescue and training reports as a quality assurance function
  • Develops and evaluates effective procedures and policies to support the Aquatic program and protect liability exposure
  • Responds to Aquatic emergencies to participate in, support and/or coordinate response
  • Plans, conducts, oversees and evaluates a wide range of staff training
  • Assists with scheduling problems, develops work schedules, approves time cards
  • Complies and analyzes Aquatic service statistics and records
  • Develops, coordinates and administers aquatic recreation programs
  • Makes public presentations on safety and lifeguard service
  • Assists, teaches and arranges materials for CPR & First Aid classes to appropriate District classifications
  • Trains, instructs and performs skill audits for all subordinate staff.
  • Assures compliance with legal codes and requirements related to lifeguard procedures and emergency operations


Perks at Work.JPG

Desert Recreation District Perks at Work:

  • Competitive Medical, Dental, Vision, Life, and AD&D (Accidental Death Dismemberment) Insurances
  • PTO: Vacation, Sick, Management Leave and Holiday Pay
  • Retirement Plans: 457(b) and 401(a)
  • Optional Supplemental Benefits (Including Accident Insurance, Term Life, Cancer Insurance, and more)
  • Optional Flexible Spending Account (FSA)
  • Optional Dependent Care Account
  • Discounted Desert Recreation District Gym Membership ($1 for a year)
  • Discounted DRD Programs/Facility Rentals (Up to 75% off)
  • TicketsatWork (Discounts to theme parks, movies, concerts, sporting events, hotels, etc.
  • Candidate Referral Program
  • Financial Fit (FinFit) Educational Resources
Job Requirements

Knowledge of:

Theories, principles and practices common to the operation of Aquatic programs in a specialized field, including rules, materials, and equipment.
Theories, principles and practices common to the administration, development and evaluation of specialized Aquatic programs, including budget creation and administration.

Principles and practices of leadership, supervision, employee motivation, team building and performance evaluation.
Pool water chemistry including the ability to perform water tests, makes analyses, and adds appropriate chemicals as required. Ability to solve technical problems within area of specialty.
Facility management and best practices for swimming pool operations.
Techniques for providing excellence in customer service and effective conflict resolution.

And understanding of cultural diversity and its importance in working with the community.
And familiarity with federal, state and local laws, codes and regulations that are pertinent to public sector recreation.
Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC)
Emergency response protocol and coordination with other agencies for the highest level of emergency care.

Ability to:

Teach, lead and/or instruct specialized Aquatic programs.

Demonstrate strong organizational, planning and administrative skills. Must maintain detailed and accurate records.

Prepare budgets and meet budget targets. Assist in garnering grants, donations, sponsorships and in-kind services.
Collect, evaluate and interpret varied information and data, either in statistical or narrative form; interpret documents, agreements and contracts; interpret and apply laws, regulations, policies and procedures.
Monitor and evaluate program and service results and demonstrate outcomes both qualitatively and quantitatively.
Demonstrate sufficient community relations ability to build partnerships and advocacy for District programs and services.
Be a team-oriented leader committed to employee empowerment, problem solving and customer service.
Write promotional materials and participate in the marketing of Aquatic programs and services.

Utilize sound judgment, analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project consequences of proposed actions, and implement recommendations in support of goals.
Administer and oversee contracted services.
Facilitate employee and community groups to solve problems, resolve conflicts and work effectively and collaboratively.
Demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills. Must be able to develop program reports, evaluations and other material as well as conduct effective teaching, instruction and/or training.

Work odd or long hours at a time to complete projects or to participate in or coordinate evening and off-hour activities.
Respond quickly and appropriately in emergency situations and deal effectively with injuries and accidents as a result of aquatic/recreational programs and activities.
Travel to monitor programs, attend meetings as needed in the course of work.

Use a computer/word processor, design and compile data and reports, create presentations, analyze data, and develop budgets. Utilize computer applications (e.g. Microsoft Office) and data management applications for effective service delivery.

Operate modern office equipment, including fax machines, scanners, POS systems, multi-line telephone system, printers and copiers.

Education / Experience / Training: Any combination of education, experience and training that would likely provide the required knowledge, skills and abilities is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the knowledge, skills and abilities would be:

Education: Possess an Associate’s Degree from an accredited college or university with major work in sports administration, physical education, recreation or related field. A Bachelor’s degree preferred.

Experience: Three (3) years of increasing responsibility in dealing with Aquatic Administrative and operational oversight, at least 12 months of which have been in a responsible supervisory position. Experience teaching swim lessons is a must.


Possession and maintenance of a valid California driver’s license with an acceptable driving record is a condition of initial and continued employment in this position.
Possession and maintenance of valid American Red Cross instructor certifications in

CPR for the Professional Rescuer
Standard First Aid
Lifeguard Training
Water Safety Instructor Trainer

PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

While performing the duties of this job:

The employee is required to work indoors in an office, recreation facility or classroom as well as outdoors. When working outdoors, the employee is regularly required to withstand outside elements including extreme heat, rain, wind, etc.

The employee is regularly required to walk on slippery or uneven surfaces. Eye-hand-foot coordination is required.

The employee is regularly required to perform work on a computer and multi-line or cellular telephone as well as perform work on a copy machine, fax machine, scanner, and other office equipment.

The employee is regularly required to use hands to finger, handle, or feel. Repetitive hand movement and fine coordination are needed when using a computer or other recreation equipment in the completion of the essential functions of the job.

The employee is regularly required to talk or hear since the employee regularly communicates with individuals both in person and over the phone, which requires acute hearing.

The employee is regularly required to stand for long periods of time as well as sit, twist, reach, climb, balance, stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl.

The employee is regularly required to demonstrate physical fitness and recreational activities required of the participants (i.e., jogging, running, jumping, swimming, stretching, etc.).

The employee must occasionally pull and/or push, lift and/or move equipment and supplies weighing up to 40 pounds. When instructing specialized programs such as gymnastics or aquatics, the employee may regularly spot, lift, or drag an individual up to or over 100 pounds with assistance from other staff.

The employee is occasionally required to operate a motorized vehicle.

The employee must be able to read handwritten and printed materials and a computer screen.

WORK ENVIRONMENT[1]: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.

The employee works in an office, recreation facility, and classroom and/or outdoors in various weather conditions. When working indoors, employee is exposed to moderate to excessive noise levels, controlled temperature conditions and no direct exposure to hazardous physical substances. When working outdoors, employee experiences exposure to extreme hot or cold temperature, exposure to marked changes in temperature/humidity, exposure to dust, mists, or other irritating particles and exposure to moderate to excessive noise.

[1] Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.
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