What are typical activities director salaries?

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Host

Do some companies pay a lot more for this position than others? What does a top earner make in this field?

What skills should you learn to increase your salary?

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Alyssia in Flint, Michigan

94 months ago

In Michigan, most activity directors start off around 11.00 and hour.
As far as skills to increase your salary, organizational, an ability to have fun, and most importantly, keeping your residents happy! Hope this helps!

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Emma (Host) in Stamford, Connecticut

94 months ago

You may want to try doing a couple searches on the Indeed Salary Search tool to get a better feel for average salaries. Here is one I did to help get you started: www.indeed.com/salary?q1=Activities+Director&l1=&tm=1

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debi johnson in Aledo, Illinois

94 months ago

Emma (Host) said: You may want to try doing a couple searches on the Indeed Salary Search tool to get a better feel for average salaries. Here is one I did to help get you started: www.indeed.com/salary?q1=Activities+Director&l1=&tm=1

Thanks Emma, I am not in a city or state that pays alot even thought I work hard at my job and love it. Maybe I will move to VA they pay good seems like :)

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tina p in West Monroe, Louisiana

94 months ago

I was living in Kansas City Mo back then and I also worked in the Kansas area also. Louisiana doesn't pay as well but I was able to get around $12.00 hour.

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Karen in Hillsborough, North Carolina

79 months ago

I was hired with no education, on the job training two years ago and made about $10 an hour but did a lot of volunteer time as well ... I mainly cooridinated volunteers to help because we were not staffed in such a way that allowed many of our PCAs to help.
In NJ, at least in a nursing care facility my mother volunteers at, an Activity Director makes about twice that much with about 5 full time and 2 part time assistants are paid on average about the same as I made doing it all myself. It's all according to where you live it seems when it comes to salaries.

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k dizzle in Valley Springs, California

75 months ago

I am activity assistant but I have director activity certificate and they gave me 16/hr. But Im doing everything for my boss

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Brenda in Suffolk, Virginia

75 months ago

I make $11. I plan everything and do all the activities for a resort, including the paper work. A friend of mine who works at another resort in the same area make $13hr. She over sees other activity personel in addtion to proforming activity duties and paper work.

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Bethany in Indianapolis, Indiana

72 months ago

Everyone should try working at larger communities. In some CCRC's (Continuing care retirement communities) the Activity Director makes about 50,000 a year. even more with degree and experience.

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cindy brooke in Raleigh, North Carolina

72 months ago

I live in maryland and I just become a activity director in 2007. I have act assisted experience and my first activity directorbpodtion payed me $19.00 a hour so mybe it might depends on where you live.

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Jordana in Columbus, Ohio

71 months ago

I make 15.50 an hour as an activities director for an assisted living. This is due to a bachelor's degree in Family Science, as well as volunteering for assisted living facilities in the past. The job is extremely fulfilling and rewarding!

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Jenna in Atlanta, Georgia

69 months ago

I was hired yesterday, Jan. 20, 2008 for a activity director position and was offered $11. I have a bachelors degree (just graduated college, not much real job experience) but not in anything to do with the job. I did some volutneer work but not much, is this a fair wage with the way the economy is and that I live in GA?

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Karen in Hillsborough, North Carolina

69 months ago

Jenna,
it's up to you whether or not you accept a position according to what is being offered to you in way of a salary.
I think about teachers, social workers, etc. and must admit most of them don't receive anywhere near what they deserve or would be considered "fair" if compared to what others who are more valuable in our society get paid.
ie: doctors, lawyers, politicians
What is "fair?" who can say?
what matters most is that you are really happy with what you are doing and value the people you serve. If you do what you do because you LOVE what you DO then salary won't be your bottom line condition.
Otherwise you might want to consider continuing your education and going into medicine. Nurses and technicians working in the medical field are most highly paid professionals.
there is no money in education unless you are a supervisor and the same applies to assisted living or nursing homes when it comes to being an activity director.
Up north, in NYC, NJ, Pa. and Maryland activity directors are paid quite a bit more..but then again so are teachers, carpenters, brick masons, etc.
I think the word we might be looking for here is "UNION"

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Kristen in Clifton Park, New York

69 months ago

I have worked in the field for about 5 1/2 years and love it! I started out making 10.00/hr. with no experience and am now an Activities Director at a LTC facility and I am making 38,000. I still feel that my experience and dedication are worth more but I don't do the job for the money. I am considering moving a little further down south, VA to make some more money and have more opportunities. Anyone have any advice on that?

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sdgl in Dallas, Texas

68 months ago

I was making 15$ an hour at this facility at a SNF .I was one Activity Director and had a boss,She was a Director of Activities .There was 2 part time ladies.

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judy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

68 months ago

Host said: Do some companies pay a lot more for this position than others? What does a top earner make in this field?

What skills should you learn to increase your salary?

Its nice to be creative, and if you're in a spanish speaking neighborhood, leaning another language is great too. Being certified in anything, even CPR looks good on a resume. I made almost $50,000 a year in a skilled nursing home. BUT assisted living is cheaper. Independent can pay well too depending where. Corporations tend to have more money than mom and pop places.

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Sammie in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

68 months ago

If a building seems in trouble when you go in for your interiview? Like, the administrator tells you the last director was let go 2 months ago or you may have some issues with a difficult staff, you basically just increased your yearly salary asking amount by $10,000 because they are desperate to get someone in that position. Ask when the state is due back. if soon? You can add another few thousand! There are SO many tricks I've learned through the years. The best thing to know is this...there are NOT many people in the field anymore. You CAN make at LEAST $20. an hour if you live near a big city and have some good experience under your belt. Don't expect to make much if youre right out of school. Certified? You can basically ask any amount you want. I've gotten up in the $20's per HOUR and its great.

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Activity Director in Delmar, Maryland

62 months ago

I've worked with seniors since my sophomore year in high school, graduated with my Bachelor's with tons of relevant coursework, have volunteered in several ILF, ALF & nursing homes along with fundraising over the years and built a 12-year resume geared towards working interpersonally with the elderly. Jumping into an activity director position about two years ago in an ALF, I started at about $12/hr. With census holding steady, I have earned two full time activity assistants, my company is paying for my national certification and am making about $14.50/hr. Let's face it - we don't do this job for the money but for impact we have on the elderly's lives! And even more, there IS advancement opportunity in this field. You can become Activity Consultant Certified and help other communities establish a successful activities program. With the baby boomers aging, new facilities should be popping up all over the place, needing experienced folks to help jump start and monitor their programming. Good luck!

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Fredaree7@aol.com

61 months ago

Host said: Do some companies pay a lot more for this position than others? What does a top earner make in this field?

What skills should you learn to increase your salary?

Take a Social Services Designee Cert. class, u can find them through a vendor or some community colleges. Admin. like to see a SSD Cert. on your resume because it shows you have advanced case management skills and behavioral tracking and intervention training.

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Fredaree7@aol.com

61 months ago

debi johnson in Aledo, Illinois said: I have been an Activity Director for almost 4ys now.I do everything to do this job with little help. I only make $9.92 I feel I am very much underpaid, but how do you get more if they only give you a 3% raise once a year.

Show your employer a copy of current AD salaries relating to the type of facility you are employed with and the area. Present your own QA report relating to all your accomplishments and successful programming you have implemented. The lowest wage I know of is $12.00 per hour. Yes u are way under paid and your Admin. should be ashamed of them selfs. Or you coild ask to reduce your duties to match your curreny pay!!! And start looking for another job!!!!!!

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Fredaree7@aol.com

61 months ago

Host said: Do some companies pay a lot more for this position than others? What does a top earner make in this field?

What skills should you learn to increase your salary?

$18.00 - $20 per hour but it is usally in and exempt salary basis of 52 weeks.

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Jenni in Morehead City, North Carolina

61 months ago

What are key questions I should ask in an interview for a AD position. Does anyone know the pay for an AD in NC? I was told $10.00 per hour. That seems really really low considering all the work involved. (No matter how much you like it just for the love of it.) I am qualified through the state. CPR/First Aid and Defib. Cert. I have also taken various courses on aging, activities, and anything I could to improve the quality of my work.

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Lisa in Cape Coral, Florida

60 months ago

I live in south Florida, and I currently make 20.00 per hour as an activity director. I am not certified, although I have been working as a director for 14 years. I started in Mississippi, in 1995, and made 10.00 per hour. My facility has 120 beds, and has a heavy medicare turnaround.

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jenni in Newport, North Carolina

60 months ago

Lisa - I believe your pay is great and well deserved. Sad to say that most facilities do not recognize all the hard work that goes into this job. Good for you. Your facility recognizes and compenstates your hard work for their residents! Wonderful. Thanks for the response.

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Karen in Raleigh, North Carolina

60 months ago

It seems to me this conversation has been kept alive by folks who are serious
about your work as Activity Directors.
I'm now "marketing" and must say it's obvious ..
never mind.
Today while at work for the second time within a month I was able to help save
a resident's life.
Not because I am being paid any more than the staff who were as much concerned
as I'd been about her life had been part of it all.
Each of us were focused on the person who's life we were there to not only save
but to make sure will amount to more than mere rhetoric in the end.
Idealism is one thing. Living out our ideal is quite something else.
By God's Good Grace we are all going to overcome whatever evil thing would
otherwise prevent us in the end from accomplishing our highest goal.
Get up and onto the road less travelled.
It's up to YOU whether or not you "win" or "lose" in the end..
what reward means most to us?
are we more concerned about the golden rule or a rule of gold?
always, in every age, our choice.
we humans have been given the gift of free will.
"two men look up from behind the same bars
One sees mud, the other sees stars."
The people we serve are a gift to us. Whether we make $10 an hour
or volunteer? they should matter more to us than anything else
in the world when it comes down to "money"
Anyone who has been a real parent will let you know
what matters most :)

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jenni in Morehead City, North Carolina

60 months ago

Your point is well taken but I also volunteer as well. If I can provide more financial support to my family by working a job I am guarenteed to make 15 -17 per hour, my family comes first. I am a great volunteer and can share my creative talents, time, and resources and still be a blessing to the residents. My husband has been out of work for 2 years and we have 6 children. 4 are still in the home. Money really does matter in my case. In order to know what job will best serve your family financially this is important. When my husband returns to work 'money' will not be such an issue. My volunteering shows you how much heart I have for local residents in facilities. Thanks for your response.

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Sabrina Wells in Westlake, Louisiana

59 months ago

tina p in West Monroe, Louisiana said: I haved worked in the field for over 10 years and I've had a good salary. The last time I worked in a long term care facility was 2 years ago. My salary then was between $16-$17 an hour. The least I've made back in 1996 was about $10.00. I've always asked for what I wanted or more and they always negotiated with me.

I live in Lake Charles, LA. Looking to become certified but don't know who around here does training. do you know anything about this. You can email me wsabrinak@gmail.com Thank you, hope to hear from you very soon.

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Brandon Howard in Los Angeles, California

59 months ago

I work in a Assisted Living Community that has 75 beds and is private pay. I currently have over 17 years experience and am working as an exempt employee for 45K a year. The benefits are not as strong and the pay is about four percent less than I used to earn at a much larger non for proft facility that I used to work at for over 13 years, though I love my job and needed to relocate. I have an AA degree and want to move on to become an administrator. I can't see myself doing this past 50.

People that have the aptitude for this kind of job can find out all the information needed to become certified on-line.

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la vampira in Lynn, Massachusetts

59 months ago

I want to be a certificate activities director but i dont no what place to go here in massachusetts if any one knows please let me know

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tlsmiley in Parsippany, New Jersey

58 months ago

I am looking to get into the Activites director or recrational therapy field. When researching they appear to be a little different, but similar. What type of school does each require, and how long of a program are they. Does anyone out there have knowledge and time to provide this info to me, that would be very helpful. I am also looking into Physical Therapy Assistant, but not many programs available and two-year college, it looks more difficult to study than the others because of anatomy, psyology, etc. thanks

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twirlchick2005 in Montrose, West Virginia

58 months ago

i have been currently employed as an part time activity director how much should start out pay be??

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Brandon Howard in Los Angeles, California

58 months ago

Look at salary.com and follow the instructions. Good luck in your new endeavor.

BH

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sdgl in Arlington, Texas

58 months ago

Texas pays more $ for any field . Activities Directors can make 20$ an hr. They will start you @ least 12$ an hour. assistants make 9-10$ an hr I guess. I was working @ this SNF that started me @ 12$ hourly w/benefits.

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sdgl in Arlington, Texas

58 months ago

judy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania said: Its nice to be creative, and if you're in a spanish speaking neighborhood, leaning another language is great too. Being certified in anything, even CPR looks good on a resume. I made almost $50,000 a year in a skilled nursing home. BUT assisted living is cheaper. Independent can pay well too depending where. Corporations tend to have more money than mom and pop places.

I useto live in California. Well, that's where I'm from . Moved to Texas 7 years ago w/my husband & kids. I found out that Texas pays more $$$$ out in CA. I was making 7.50$ as an Assistant. The Directors w/ a Batcholers degree start off @ $12 here $12 is the lowest they will pay w/no experiance. As a an assistant when I first started working here I was making $12 hourly.

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tlsmiley in Parsippany, New Jersey

58 months ago

cindy brooke in Raleigh, North Carolina said: I live in maryland and I just become a activity director in 2007. I have act assisted experience and my first activity directorbpodtion payed me $19.00 a hour so mybe it might depends on where you live.

I am looking to move from New Jersey to Maryland, and want Activities Director position. Where in Maryland do you live?

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tlsmiley in Parsippany, New Jersey

58 months ago

Karen in Raleigh, North Carolina said: It seems to me this conversation has been kept alive by folks who are serious
about your work as Activity Directors.
I'm now "marketing" and must say it's obvious ..
never mind.
Today while at work for the second time within a month I was able to help save
a resident's life.
Not because I am being paid any more than the staff who were as much concerned
as I'd been about her life had been part of it all.
Each of us were focused on the person who's life we were there to not only save
but to make sure will amount to more than mere rhetoric in the end.
Idealism is one thing. Living out our ideal is quite something else.
By God's Good Grace we are all going to overcome whatever evil thing would
otherwise prevent us in the end from accomplishing our highest goal.
Get up and onto the road less travelled.
It's up to YOU whether or not you "win" or "lose" in the end..
what reward means most to us?
are we more concerned about the golden rule or a rule of gold?
always, in every age, our choice.
we humans have been given the gift of free will.
"two men look up from behind the same bars
One sees mud, the other sees stars."
The people we serve are a gift to us. Whether we make $10 an hour
or volunteer? they should matter more to us than anything else
in the world when it comes down to "money"
Anyone who has been a real parent will let you know
what matters most :)

What you say doesn't answer the question about salary for Activities Director, but I do appreciate your devotion to the job and God Bless!

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sdgl in Arlington, Texas

58 months ago

Your heart is in the right place, but if you have the time to work for FREE then more power to you! When you have a family to raise and feed and have bills to pay, Then I won't even think of working for free. Everyone wants to earn more money to be able to live and take care of their family . well working for free isn't helping anyone in this Forum ...

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lmlawrence in Clinton Township, Michigan

58 months ago

where can i find trainning here in my area? i have some trainning but need more, can not afford college right now.

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jennifer in Morehead City, North Carolina

57 months ago

Call your local community college. It does not cost much. Under $100.00.

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chrystalluvzsmilez@yahoo.com

57 months ago

Hello everyone,

I need your help...I have over 10 years of Administrative experience. I currently work for the Director of Neurosurgery at Duke (in Durham) and have been offered an interview closer to my home in Raleigh as an Activity Assistant at a retirement home. How much does it pay. I make over 14.00 an hour. Will I be able to get this much or would it be an dumb request??

Thanks!

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jennifer in Morehead City, North Carolina

57 months ago

Nope. You will be lucky to get 12.00 per hour but go anyway and see what they offer you! Wish I had better news. In NC even the very very best is WAY underpaid! I know I am! NC is paid 15% lower than in other states. Go figure.

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sdgl in Arlington, Texas

57 months ago

No way! $10-12 an hour only. I wouldn't go as low as an Activity Assistant with your years of working in Administration.

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Melissa in Columbus, Ohio

57 months ago

Hey to answer your comment about activity director wage. I started off at $15/hr.

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chrystalluvzsmilez in Morrisville, North Carolina

57 months ago

Hey guys...Thanks so much for your assistance!!! I decided to cancel my interview b/c again it is for an ASSISTANT activity director not the DIRECTOR so I am looking at making less money than I do now.

You guys are great! Thanks for the advice!!!

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Wendy in Cary, North Carolina

54 months ago

Hey, I work in the Chapel Hill/Durham area of North Carolina and am an activity director for a 37 bed dementia secured community. I am IT for activities. They were offerin in their ad when I applied between $13-$14 an hour and I negotiated it up to $16.00 an hour. I know I make more than another activity director up the street working for my same company. When I worked in Philadelphia PA for Sunrise Senior Living I made $19 an hour, but before that in the same area I worked for a CCRC and only made $16. and when I worked in Bethesda MD near D.C. I made $21 an hour.

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Howardcelnik@sbcglobal.net in Visalia, California

54 months ago

Dear Wendy,

I'm sure that you would also consider your benefit packages at these different places that you worked at and the one you are currently working at. We earn that much more because if we were to pay for Health Care, Dental, Vision and matching contributions to either a 403B or 401K's.

We are not able to. Get rich by any stretch of our imaginations, though if we love what we do, that's priceless. I have 20 years experience as an Activity Director and always go to bed with a smile on my face. I also worked my way up through experience and currently earn 52K a year, plus all the benefits. I feel truly blessed that I love my job and the residents I work for.

I wish you peace.
Howard Celnik
Beverly Hills, California 90212

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Acceptanceofgod2007@yahoo.com in Topeka, Kansas

54 months ago

I have been working as an Activity Director for 9 months now, I got my certificate in March of this year. My pay is still the same as it was when I was working the floor as a CNA. I was also told that I wouldn't get paid as a Activity Director. I really don't think that is fair, cause I went to school passed with an A for my grade, and I can't get the pay for it.

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Howard Celnik in Los Angeles, California

54 months ago

Distress not. I was unclear about what your duties were as their Activity Director. If you are spending 100% of your time working as their Activity Director, you should earn more. Maybe not much as you would like, but more nonetheless.

You had mentioned that you only had several months of experience as an Activity Director, and the more you learn and over time, you will earn more. If this does not happen, I would suggest you stay right where you are until you receive a full offer and a start date. Assuming your current employer may want to keep you as an Activity Director, you should finally receive that promotion.

Please, remember to use Tact and Diplomacy when presenting your one to two weeks notice, though since you enjoy the community you work for, you would really like them to beat the new offer. If the management is willing to let you go, you may leave a door open if the new job does not work out for you.

The best of luck!

Howard Celnik ADC; Garden of Palms in West Hollywood, California.

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CTRS in Middle River, Maryland

53 months ago

I work in a LTC/skilled nursing facility in Massachusetts and have a MS in Therapeutic Rec, my CTRS certification and Licensed in NH and make $40k/yr.

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CTRS in Massachusetts

53 months ago

I work in a LTC/skilled nursing facility in Massachusetts and have a MS in Therapeutic Rec, my CTRS certification and Licensed in NH and make $40k/yr.

**note change in location**

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