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 KRPA Annual Awards of Excellence

Honor Someone From Your Agency or Your Community for Their Efforts to Support Recreation and Parks in Kansas

Are you aware of someone within your agency, a board member, a volunteer, a legislator, organization or local leader who has made a meaningful difference in helping your agency achieve success?  Please take this opportunity to pay tribute and honor individuals who are important to your success stories by nominating them to be honored at the KRPA Awards of Excellence Lunch during the annual KRPA Conference and Trade Show. All award nomination forms will be completed online this year, in lieu of a fillable pdf. The deadline to nominate for Hall of Fame and Distinguished Awards is October 14, 2022. If you have any questions, please reach out to Amanda Sterling at amanda@krpa.org.

Branch Award are here.

Award Categories

Hall of Fame

Nominations for the KRPA Hall of Fame shall come from the general membership.   Requirements:  A parks and recreation professional who committed a lengthy time of service to the field of parks and recreation in Kansas.  Must be retired from the profession at least (2) years.  Candidates must be a past member of KRPA.  Professional nominees are preferred to have had professional certification but not required. Hall of Fame selections are made by the KRPA Executive Committee

2022 Inductees- John Knight

Distinguished Fellow Award

This award recognizes a professional KRPA member who has rendered outstanding service to the organization and the profession on the local, state or national level. This award shall be limited to those persons having served a minimum of fifteen years of service as a full time employee in the recreation and park field. This award may be given posthumously.

2022 Winner
Cindy Crandall, Deerfield Recreation Commission

2022 Winner
Mike Buchanan, Manhattan Parks and Recreation

Distinguished Professional Award

This award recognized a professional KRPA member who has rendered outstanding service to the organization and the profession, local or state.  This award shall be limited to those persons having served a minimum of ten years as a full-time employee in the recreation and park field.

2022 Winner- Jenni Smith,
Mission Parks and Recreation

Distinguished New Professional Award

This award recognizes a KRPA member who has rendered outstanding service to any phase of the recreation and park profession on a local or state level.  This award shall be limited to those persons having served at least three years but not more than ten years as a full-time employee in the recreation and park field.

2022 Winner- Nate Greet
Shawnee County Parks + Recreation

Distinguished Board or Commission Member Award

This award recognizes a member of a board or commission who oversees or advises park and recreation agencies.

2022 Winner- Debby Kendrick
City of Mulvane

Distinguished Volunteer Award

This award recognizes a person who volunteers time for their services to the recreation, park or conservation initiatives and who has rendered distinguished service to the organization and the recreation and park profession.

2022 Winner- Claire Willenberg
City of Wichita

Distinguished Service Award

This award recognizes any full-time or part-time employee in the recreation and park field who has made a difference to the community or organization.  Recipients need not be KRPA members and it is the intent of this award to recognize dedicated employees in such areas as maintenance, clerical and programming positions.  This award shall be limited to those persons having served a minimum of two years as a full-time or part-time employee in the recreation and park field.

2022 Winner- Steve Carrithers
Grant County Recreation Commission

Distinguished Public Service Award

This award recognizes an organization, which has provided outstanding service to any recreation, park and conservation initiatives at the local or state level.  An organization is defined to include civic and fraternal groups as well as businesses, corporations, and other organizations not directly associated with the recreation and park profession.  This definition does not exclude businesses dealing in services or products, which are recreation and park oriented.

2021 Winner- Plates for Parks
Wichita Parks Foundation

Distinguished Elected Official Award

This award recognizes an elected official at any government level, including local, state or federal, who has rendered service to any phase of the recreation and park initiative at a local, state and/or national level.

2022 Winner- Brandon Johnson
City of Wichita

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