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Park & Recreation director recognized for service to Fort Worth

Posted July 28, 2020

Richard Zavala headshot
Richard Zavala

Richard Zavala, director of the Park & Recreation Department, was recently recognized by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) for his accomplishments during his time at the City of Fort Worth.

Zavala has served the community as director of Fort Worth Parks for more than 25 years. Fort Worth has seen tremendous growth during this time, and the Park & Recreation Department, to Zavala’s credit, is doing a great job of keeping up with the need for parks services for the city.

Zavala comes up with creative ways to get projects funded, using resources from the city, state and federal government, as well as public-private partnerships. A recent example is the $3 million Fort Worth Dream Park, which opened in April 2019. The funds were raised by individuals, and under Zavala’s guidance, the park was constructed and opened in time for the city’s annual Mayfest celebration. The Dream Park was designed to serve children and residents with physical disabilities, and is a brightly colored, sensory-rich environment that boasts equipment and surfaces that go above and beyond ADA guidelines.

“Richard is so good at his job that the mayor and city council call on him in emergency situations,” said Daniel Villegas, chair of the Fort Worth Park and Recreation Advisory Board. “Richard is currently serving on the city’s COVID-19 response operations team to help direct resources and services where they are needed most.”

This recognition comes at the conclusion of the NRPA’s National Park & Recreation Month celebration.

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