61st Street Farmers Market Manager

The Market Manager is responsible for the development and proper functioning of the 61st Street Farmers Market, a year-round farmers market primarily serving the Hyde Park and Woodlawn communities. The Market Manager reports to the Experimental Station Executive Director. This position is supported by a number of paid and volunteer staff.

Applicants must be available full time starting September 1st, 2017 and are encouraged to visit the August 19th or 26th Markets to observe programming firsthand.

The responsibilities of the Market Manager include the following:

  • Market Development

    • Recruiting farmers and vendors to standards set by the Experimental Station (25 vendors for the 2017 outdoor season)

    • Ensuring product variety to meet customer needs and vendor success

    • Building and maintaining strong relationships with farmers and vendors

    • Allocating space to farmers and vendors at the market

    • Developing and organizing market programming (i.e. weekly Market School, chef demonstrations, health initiatives, music, entertainment, etc.)

    • Networking at various conferences, trainings, and annual meetings

  • Market Administration

    • Collecting and handling fees from producers

    • Maintaining permits, licensing, insurance

    • Helping to develop farmers market annual budget

    • Implementing and managing program budget

    • Working with the City of Chicago to ensure proper licensing and permitting

  • Food Education

    • Managing and instructing a garden-to-plate program with elementary students, including in-school workshops, gardening classes, and coordinating chef-instructed cooking classes

    • Providing adult food education through tastings, gardening, and urban farming

    • Hiring and managing Food Education Assistant, Head Gardener, and Garden Assistant positions during growing season

  • Community Outreach

    • Building and maintaining relationships with the local community

    • Conducting tastings and other on-the-ground outreach at local human services offices

  • Volunteer Management

    • Recruiting and managing market volunteers

    • Managing market interns when applicable

  • Market Management

    • Overseeing market days, including set up, clean up, parking, security, farmer/vendor management, and market programming

    • Overseeing the Link/EBT and Credit/Debit redemption system, assisting Market Cashier when necessary

    • Improving the atmosphere of the market through positive interaction with shoppers, vendors, and volunteers

  • Standards Enforcement

    • Enforcing standards for produce and products sold at market by visiting farms and producers

    • Enforcing adherence to health codes

  • Advertising/Marketing

    • Overseeing publicity and development of advertising campaign prior to and during the season

    • Working with a graphic designer to create marketing materials

    • Updating website and community event calendars

    • Maintaining active administration of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram social media accounts

  • Data Collection and Reporting

    • Tracking Credit, Debit, Link, and DVCP purchases on a weekly basis throughout the season

    • Reporting to ED on Link and DVCP purchases

    • Collecting and reporting to ED on Food Education impact for grant reporting

    • Creating year-end infographic report of data

Criteria and qualifications of preferred candidates

  • Preferably have a 4-year college degree, or a combination of education and work experience in a related field.

  • Have prior experience managing or working with a farmers market.

  • Be able to meet the physical demands of the job (carrying canopy tents, weights, and other equipment; setting up and taking down equipment; ability to lift 50 lbs).

  • Have some experience working with K-8 youth with applied classroom management tools.

  • Be prepared to submit a criminal background check.

  • Demonstrate a passion for food justice and food literacy-related programming and an understanding of seasonal local produce grown in the Midwest.

  • Preferably have experience growing produce in a home garden or agriculture field.

  • Be highly detailed and organized.

  • Have the proven ability to troubleshoot, work under pressure, and prioritize.

  • Have technical proficiency in Microsoft applications (Word, Excel, Power Point), Google Apps (Sheets, Docs), OSX, or the ability to quickly learn these technologies. 

  • Have outstanding customer service, listening, and de-escalation skills.

  • Be able to ensure accurate bookkeeping and reimbursement of vendors.

  • Be trustworthy and dependable.

  • Be a hard worker and motivated self starter.

  • Have strong verbal and written communication skills.

  • Be able to work independently and with a team.

  • Skilled in community engagement.

  • Be a strong and dependable representative of the Experimental Station.

This is a full-time salaried position with health benefits and paid time-off.

Email your cover letter, resume, and two references to jobs@experimentalstation.org with your name and “Market Manager Position” in the subject.  The deadline to apply is August 22, 2017.


Experimental Station provides equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Experimental Station complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.