Director, UBC Botanical Garden

Ref: 6401

University of British Columbia

Vancouver, Canada

Apply Now

Role Managed by:

Margaret DeLeon

Research Associate

t: +1 437-326-9104


Primary Practice Group: Higher Education and Research

Salary & Benefits: Competitive

Closing Date: 31/03/2023

Formal Interview Date: Late April and May 2023

UBC Botanical Garden is located on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) people.

The University of British Columbia invites applications for our next Director of UBC Botanical Garden. This position presents a unique opportunity to take a leadership role at Canada’s leading university garden at one of the world’s top universities. The anticipated start date is July 2023 or as mutually agreed on with the preferred candidate. 

UBC Botanical Garden is Canada’s oldest university botanic garden, established in 1916 and contains over 5400 different kinds of plants in its living collections. 39% of its collections are of wild origin and in addition to attracting garden enthusiasts, the Garden provides plants and plant materials for academic study and research. The Garden includes the renowned Japanese Nitobe Memorial Garden and an extensive Nursery site, all of which is situated on the University of British Columbia’s Point Grey campus, approximately 13 kilometers from downtown Vancouver. It has an annual operating budget of $3M, a total annual attendance of 100,000 and up to 52 full- and part-time staff members. It is a popular and busy public venue for events and education.

Reporting to the Dean of Science, the Director provides leadership and vision in the Garden, maximizing engagement through collaborative research, public programming, and community participation. A strong leader, the Director is responsible for overseeing and directing the Garden, including the activities of strategic development, oversight of the living collections, financial performance, project development and implementation, promotion and coordination of research, educational programming, membership development, marketing and public relations, fundraising, and ongoing governance of this complex unit within the Faculty of Science. 

The ideal candidate will bring leadership characterized by an ability to garner broad community support, including the volunteer group Friends of the UBC Botanical Garden, to increase visibility of the organization and carry forward major projects and programs. They will also bring a passion for gardens and a creative vision for reimagining the role of botanical gardens in an environment aspiring to champion equity, decolonization, and address our global biodiversity crisis and the climate emergency.

UBC is partnering with the executive search firm Perrett Laver on this search. Applications should consist of a full CV detailing academic and professional qualifications and relevant achievements. It should be accompanied by a cover letter describing how candidates meet the selection criteria, why the appointment is of interest, and what they believe they can bring to the role. The closing date for applications is Noon PDT on Friday, March 31, 2023.

At UBC, we believe that attracting and sustaining a diverse workforce is key to the successful pursuit of excellence in research, innovation, and learning for all faculty, staff, and students. Our commitment to employment equity helps achieve inclusion and fairness, brings rich diversity to UBC as a workplace, and creates the necessary conditions for a rewarding career.
We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Métis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

The University is committed to creating and maintaining an inclusive and equitable work environment for all members of its workforce, and in particular for its employees with disabilities. An inclusive work environment for employees with disabilities ensures individuals are given the resources and accommodations they need to participate fully and succeed in their role. For contact information regarding UBC’s accommodation and access policies and resources, please visit the Centre for Workplace Accessibility website. Accommodation is available on request for all applicants at all stages of the selection process. To confidentially request accommodations, please contact Margaret Constance De Leon at

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents of Canada will be given priority.

Perrett Laver is a Data Controller and a Data Processor, as defined under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Any information obtained by our trading divisions is held and processed in accordance with the relevant data protection legislation. The data you provide us with is securely stored on our computerised database and transferred to our clients for the purposes of presenting you as a candidate and/or considering your suitability for a role you have registered interest in. Our legal basis for much of our data processing activity is ‘Legitimate Interests’. You have the right to object to us processing your data in this way. For more information about this, your rights, and our approach to Data Protection and Privacy, please visit our website