In February 2019, Nancy Wallerstein completed her tenure as the longest serving Board Member in Johnson County Park & Recreation District’s (JCPRD’s) history. Nancy served for more than 20 years representing the citizens of Johnson County. During that time, she served in every board officer position multiple times, including four terms as chair.
The National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials (NACPRO) awarded Nancy the Outstanding Public Official award presented to an elected or appointed federal, state, or local official who has contributed significantly to the benefit of NACPRO member parks, recreation, leisure services and open space programs at the annual meeting in Castle Rock Colorado June 9.
During Nancy’s tenure, JCPRD acquired more than $40 million in park land; opened four new parks, providing access to more than 3,000 additional acres of greenspace to the public; constructed New Century Fieldhouse; acquired and renovated the Mill Creek Activity Center and Mid-America West Sports Complex; expanded Ernie Miller Nature Center; and constructed new dressing room and restroom buildings at The Theatre it the Park. Additionally, under Nancy’s leadership, development of Meadowbrook Park was initiated via a partnership with City of Prairie Village, the developer of the site, and Johnson County Government, providing 80 acres of park land in an area of the county underserved by open space.
Nancy’s passion for the arts led to the acquisition and development of the Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center. Nancy advocated tirelessly for an architecturally significant building to be converted to the County’s first indoor arts facility and new home for the Johnson County Museum. The success of this building will be felt for generations in this region.
Under Nancy’s leadership, JCPRD was a national Gold Medal finalist twice, culminated by a win in 2017 in New Orleans where Nancy proudly joined staff to accept this prestigious award. In addition, JCPRD has successfully remained CAPRA accredited during Nancy’s tenure meeting 100 percent of the standards in 2009 and 2014.
Nancy, now serving as a member of the Board of Directors for The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County, has indeed created a lasting legacy in Johnson County through her leadership and dedication to preserve green space, the arts and development of parks and recreation facilities.