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NRPA Awards for Innovation and Honorable Efforts
CEO Announces Retirement


Parks nationwide are improving in accessibility and design due to the innovative practices of individuals and organizations.

The 2018 recipients of the NRPA Innovation Awards and NRPA Spotlight Awards were announced on June 13. The Innovation Awards are given to the park and recreation agencies that have practiced "park design, health and wellness, conservation and social equity" to enhance their communities. The award recipients of these innovation practices are:

• Park Design - Town of Glastonbury in Glastonbury, Connecticut
• Health - Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation in Alhambra, California
• Conservation - Forest Preserves of Cook County in River Forest, Illinois
• Social Equity - Chicago Park District in Chicago, Illinois

The Spotlight Awards are given to recognized professionals, volunteers, community members and park advocates for their efforts in parks and recreation. The recipients are as follows:

• Robert M. Artz Advocate Award - Nixon Adams, chair, board of commissioners, Recreation District #1, Pelican Park, St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana
• Robert W. Crawford Young Professional Award - Jeff Ozimek, outdoor adventure programming manager, Bainbridge Island Metro Park & Recreation District, Bainbridge Island, Washington
• RWJF-NRPA Award for Health Equity - Becky Tuttle, director of community development/chair, Greater Wichita YMCA/Health & Wellness Coalition of Wichita, Wichita, Kansas
• National Distinguished Professional Award - Michael Klitzing, chief operating officer, Carmel Clay Parks & Recreation, Carmel, Indiana
• Theodore and Frankling Roosevelt Award for Excellence in Recreation and Park Research - Andew Mowen, professor, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania

The recipients will receive the awards at the 2018 NRPA Annual Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana on September 25-27. A public vote will be held to select one of the winners of the Innovation Awards as the recipient of the Best in Innovation Award, the highest recognition in park and recreation innovation.

Furthermore, president and CEO of NRPA, Barbara Tulipane, CAE, recently announced her retirement. "The time I have spent at NRPA has shown me how vital parks and recreation is to all Americans. I'm proud to have led NRPA in the fight to protect parks everywhere, to make communities more equitable and to bring health benefits of parks and recreation to every community," stated Tulipane. Having led NRPA for 10 years, she has contributed to public policy and legislation, and has improved accessibility to parks and recreation for communities nationwide.

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August 19, 2019, 10:20 am PDT

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