Grand Island- Mayor Jay Vavricek has recommended the appointment of Todd McCoy to serve as the parks and recreation director though he said the process didn't go quite as expected. Vavricek's recommendation will be taken to city council for action at the October 9 city council meeting.
The city received 34 applications for the position of parks and recreation directors. Council President Peg Gilbert and Council-members Bob Niemann and Larry Carney along with City Administrator Mary Lou Brown and Human Resources Director Brenda Sutherland participated in the screening process to determine the finalists selected for in-person interviews with the Mayor and interview committee. While three finalists were selected, two of the finalists declined the final interview.
"While the process didn't go quite as planned, in the end I couldn't be more pleased with the outcome, said Vavricek. "Todd has made his mark in the Parks and Recreation Department as the recreation superintendent and also in the community. He is well liked and respected. We are fortunate to have such a quality individual here, ready to step up and take the lead right in our own back yard.
McCoy earned a bachelor's degree in recreation with an emphasis in administration and natural resources from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. McCoy was hired by the city of Grand Island in 1997 as the recreation superintendent and has continued to serve in that role to the present time. In addition, McCoy was also named the interim parks and recreation director in June of 2012 when former Parks and Recreation Director Steve Paustian retired. Prior to working at the city of Grand Island, McCoy worked as a youth care worker at Boys Town for two years.
Throughout the last 15 years, McCoy has managed Grand Island recreation facilities and programs including Island Oasis Water Park, Lincoln Pool, Community Fieldhouse, Grand Island Games, various sports leagues and tournaments, and children's programming.
Furthermore, McCoy is a Certified National Pool Operator, a member of the National Recreation and Parks Association and a member of the World Water Park Association. In 2003, the Nebraska Recreation and Parks Association named McCoy Outstanding Recreation Professional.
Vavricek said, "I said before, previous devotion and service in the city would not be overlooked should advancement opportunities occur. My recommendation to council of appointing Todd to the parks and recreation director position indicates another example of appointing from within and appreciation of previous dedication, loyalty, talent, and service.
"Thank you to council members Gilbert, Niemann, and Carney for their role analyzing the many deserving and talented applicants who sought consideration in the position," said Vavricek.
If McCoy's appointment is approved by city council, McCoy will assume the duties of Parks and Recreation Director on Wednesday, Oct. 10. McCoy will start at step one of the pay scale which is $69,047.21 annually.