SOURCE: National Recreation and Park Association

National Recreation and Park Association

August 30, 2016 10:00 ET

NRPA Announces New Board of Directors

Stephen Eckelberry to Serve as Chair of the Organization

ASHBURN, VA--(Marketwired - August 30, 2016) - The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is proud to announce its new 2016-2017 Board of Directors. Long time board member, Stephen Eckelberry will serve as chair, welcoming five new board members at the NRPA Annual Conference Oct. 5-8 in St. Louis.

A member of the board since 2012, Eckelberry has an extensive amount of leadership experience, having served on a variety of committees and commissions. He currently serves as a Commissioner of the Bartlett Park District in Bartlett, Ill. Eckelberry also has served in a number of leadership roles for the Illinois Park and Recreation Association (IPRA) and Illinois Association of Park Districts (IAPD) -- including the IPRA/IAPD Distinguished Accreditation Committee, which he co-chaired. Professionally, he is a Technology Manager for the Western DuPage Special Recreation Association in Carol Stream, Ill.

Five new members were appointed to NRPA's Board of Directors, including Jesus Aguirre, Superintendent of the Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation; Boyd Behnke, retired KPMG partner; Richard Gulley, Board Member, Balboa Park Conservancy; Herman Parker, Director of the Park and Recreation Department for the City of San Diego; and Dr. Howell Wechsler, CEO of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. These individuals will join forces with the following group of established professionals currently serving on the board:

  • Leon T. Andrews, Director of Race, Equity and Leadership at the National League of Cities' Institute
  • Neely Bhatt, Vice President of PROS Consulting
  • Kevin Coyle, Vice President for Education at the National Wildlife Federation
  • Roslyn Johnson, Deputy Director of Facility Operations for The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission's Department of Parks and Recreation in Prince George's County, Md.
  • Jack Kardys, Director of Miami-Dade Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department
  • Michael Kelly, General Superintendent and CEO of the Chicago Park District
  • Molly Stevens, CEO and Executive Director of Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center
  • Susan Trautman, Executive Director of the Great Rivers Greenway District in St. Louis
  • William "Joe" Turner, Director of the Houston Parks and Recreation Department

"We are excited to have so many talented individuals with strong leadership skills serving on our board," said Barbara Tulipane, NRPA President and CEO. "Their combined expertise and passion for parks and recreation will help us achieve our goals -- moving the association forward."

NRPA's Board of Directors is composed of 15-30 individuals. Board members are representative of NRPA's membership, which includes leaders in the park, recreation and conservation movement, park and recreation professionals, and individuals from corporations, industry suppliers, commercial businesses, and volunteer and civic groups.

To learn more about NRPA's leadership team, visit

To learn more about NRPA, visit

About The National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of more than 50,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA's flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit

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