Alpharetta Recreation & Parks Named National Gold Medal Award Finalist

Released May 12, 2017 12:30 PM

The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration (AAPRA), in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), is pleased to announce the City of Alpharetta Recreation and Parks as a finalist for the 2017 National Gold Medal Awards for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. Musco Lighting LLC has been a proud sponsor of the Gold Medal Awards program for more than 10 years.

Founded in 1965, the Gold Medal Awards program honors communities in the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship, program development, professional development and agency recognition. Applications are separated into seven classes, with five classes based on population, one class for armed forces recreation and one class for state park systems awarded on odd numbered years. A panel of five park and recreation professionals reviews and judges all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both the local and national levels.

The City of Alpharetta Recreation and Parks (ARP) is one of four national finalists to compete for this prestigious award in the Class IV (population 30,001 – 75,000) category.  ARP will compete for grand honors this year with three other agencies: Bismarck  Parks and Recreation District, Bismarck, ND; Lombard Park District, Lombard, IL; and City of Wheat Ridge Parks and Recreation, Wheat Ridge, CO.

“Alpharetta is truly honored to be named as one of the top recreation and parks departments in the country,” said Department Director Morgan Rodgers. “It is a testament to the continued support of our citizens, Mayor David Belle Isle, City Council, Alpharetta Recreation Commission, and our many community partners. Folks in our city understand the value and benefits of recreation and parks, both in their personal lives and to our community as a whole. Alpharetta is consistently named as a desirable place to live, work, retire and play, and the commitment of our recreation and parks department is one of the driving factors of this success. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our dedicated employees and volunteers who demonstrate their commitment to excellence in public service every day.”

City of Alpharetta Councilman and Recreation Commission liaison Jason Binder echoed his appreciation. “I am proud of Alpharetta’s Recreation and Parks Department for being named as a 2017 Gold Medal Award national finalist! Our staff is dedicated to providing quality parks and recreation services to our residents, and this recognition is a hallmark to their hard work and focus on community needs.”

This year’s finalists will compete for Grand Plaque Award honors this summer, and the seven Grand Plaque recipients will be announced live during the NRPA General Session at the 2017 NRPA Annual Conference in New Orleans, Sept. 26-28, 2017.

For more information on the Gold Medal Awards, visit or


The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration is a non-profit organization founded to advance knowledge related to the administration of recreation and parks; to encourage scholarly efforts by both practitioners and educators that would enhance the practice of park and recreation administration; to promote broader public understanding of the importance of parks and recreation to the public good; and, to conduct research, publish scholarly papers and sponsor seminars related to the advancement of park and recreation administration. For more information, visit

The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all Americans have access to parks and recreation for health, conservation and social equity. Through its network of nearly 60,000 recreation and park professionals and advocates, 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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