Dollywood Foundation, home of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library
The Dollywood Foundation was created in 1988 by Dolly Parton to inspire the children in her home county to achieve educational success. Initial efforts focused on decreasing the drop out rate in the county’s high school. In the early 90’s Dolly promised every 7th-grade and 8th-grade student she would personally give them $500 if they graduated from high school. This effort, called the Buddy Program, reduced the drop out rate for these two classes from 35% to 6%. More importantly, the program catalyzed the community to provide additional resources to sustain this improvement in the drop out rate.
In 1995, the Foundation implemented Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in Sevier County, Tennessee. What was founded as a local program grew into an international movement through the unique partnership among the Foundation, the publisher, fulfillment centers and the thousands of local organizations who adopted the program. The Imagination Library continues to be the signature program of the Foundation.
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is monthly book gifting program that mails free, high-quality, age-appropriate books to children from birth until their 5th birthday – no matter their family’s income.
After launching in 1995, the program grew quickly. At first, books were only distributed to children living in Sevier County, Tennessee where Dolly grew up. It became such a success that in 2000 a national replication effort was underway. By 2003, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library had mailed one million books. It would prove to be the first of many millions of books sent to children around the world.
Dolly’s home state of Tennessee pledged to pursue statewide coverage in 2004 and global expansion was on the horizon. After the United States, the program launched in Canada in 2006 followed by the United Kingdom in 2007, Australia in 2013, and the Republic of Ireland in 2019.
The results have been staggering (100 million books in 2018 to 150 million books in 2020); 1 statewide program to 15; and record growth in all 5 countries. Are you a passionate, outstanding leader who thrives on the opportunity to deliver Dolly’s mission to deliver more books to children? We are in search of a Regional Director located in the following regions: North, South (reside in East Tennessee), Mid and West (reside in Sacramento). This role is a key component of strategic US growth. Regional Directors will develop, plan, and execute strategic and tactical initiatives to expand and support Imagination library within assigned region. Within region, candidate will apply a consultative approach to successfully replicate, launch, and grow Imagination Library programs; Mentor local program partners to sustain current communities and grow to exceed 65% of the total eligible 0-5 population; and strategically govern statewide Imagination Library programs (Plan, Setup, Onboard, Implement, Maintain).
Key Regional Director Requirements
Graduation from an accredited college or university with a Bachelor’s degree
3-5 years proven Business Development or Sales Experience
2+ years of Project Management experience within a Non-Profit environment
Experience governing large scale programs; statewide scope a plus
Highly technical; expertise in G Suite, Word, Excel, PowerPoint & all video conferencing platforms