|KRPA recognizes JCPRD's Women's Triathlon as Outstanding New Program|
The program and Kansas City Corporate Challenge/ Special Events Coordinator Chad Tower of the Johnson County Park and Recreation District received KRPA's Outstanding New or Innovative Recreation Program Award during an awards luncheon during the annual KRPA State Conference which took place in Hutchinson on Jan. 28.
Longtime JCPRD Board Member Marvin "Doc" Wollen and Former Superintendent of Parks and Golf Courses Bill Cobb also received honors during the luncheon.
In her nomination, JCPRD Corporate and Community Wellness Manager Jill Leiker wrote, "was the first all-women's triathlon sanctioned by the United States of America Triathlon Committee in the state of Kansas. It drew women from Kansas and the surrounding region and was the platform for many new athletes to train and involve themselves in the sport of triathlon; one of the fastest growing sports in America."
Leiker noted that 376 women between the ages of 15 and 70 registered for the triathlon and despite heavy rains which caused organizers to change the event to a "splash & dash (swim/run event) on race day, it was still very well received by participants.
"The hundreds of women who braved this nasty weather to participate were not disappointed, but relieved that staff placed their safety first yet still gave them the opportunity to participate and feel great about their accomplishment," Leiker wrote.
Board Member Doc Wollen received an honorary recognition from KRPA for his years of service.
"Since 1990, Doc Wollen has been one of a seven-member policy-making board of park and recreation commissioners, appointed to staggered three-year terms by the Johnson County Commission," District Director Michael Meadors wrote in this nomination. He goes on to add that Doc "is an exemplary citizen representative and an active proponent of the parks and recreation profession. Through his involvement in the local community and the national levels, Doc Wollen has made many positive contributions. His zealous representation has benefitted park and recreation professionals and all Kansas Communities."
In addition to serving on the District Board, Wollen has served three terms on the National Park and Recreation Association (NRPA) Board of Trustees representing the Midwest Region.
Former Superintendent of Parks and Golf Courses Bill Cobb was inducted into the KRPA's Hall of Fame, also during the Awards Luncheon. Cob retired in march 2008 after nearly 29 years with the agency.