Tom Lovell, Lee’s Summit Parks & Recreation Administrator recently was sworn in as President for the 2012-2013 term for the American Academy for Park & Recreation Administration
The ceremony in October was held during the National Recreation and Park Association Congress and Exposition in Anaheim, California.
The American Academy for Park & Recreation is dedicated to advancing knowledge related to the administration of parks, recreation and conservation; encouraging scholarly efforts by both practitioners and educators to enhance the practice of park and recreation administration; promoting broader public understanding of the importance of parks, recreation and conservation to the public good; conducting research, publishing papers and sponsoring seminars related to the advancement of the field and providing services either directly or indirectly that advance the profession.
The organization was established in 1980 and Lovell was admitted to the Academy in 2003 through a nationwide election process.
Membership is made up of practitioners and educators who have served for at least 15 years in high level administrative capacities in parks and recreation and demonstrated leadership contributing to the advancement of the field. The membership is limited to 125 practicing professionals nationwide.
Lovell has served as the administrator for Lee’s Summit parks for 32 years. Some notable successes include the development of 18 neighborhood parks, a greenway system, skate park, three community centers, a water park and Legacy Park – the systems 702 acre park featuring trails, playgrounds, baseball, soccer, softball and football venues. The Lee’s Summit Parks and Recreation department achieved national accreditation in 2003 and re-accreditation in 2008. Most recently it received the highest honor of the profession, the National Gold Medal Award, from the National Park and Recreation Association. Lovell serves as an adjunct professor for the University of Central Missouri and instructor for the National Directors School conducted by the National Recreation and Park Association and North Carolina State University. He is past president of the Missouri Parks and Recreation Association and has written several articles and has made numerous presentations throughout the country about various parks and recreation topics. Most recently he was involved in the state of Missouri MetroGreen legislation to allow the creation of a metropolitan greenway district.