100 Applicants, 1 Chosen: Naturalist Tapped as Avon Lake’s New Recreation Director
Gary Gerrone, a 30-year employee of the Lorain County Metro Parks, will head Avon Lake's recreation department
Gary Gerrone, a 30-year employee of the Lorain County Metro Parks, was selected from approximately 100 applicants to replace Parks and Recreation Director Alex Nichols, who left last month to accept employment with the YMCA.
Gerrone, a lifelong resident of Avon Lake, will start on April 4.He received unanimous approval from City Council March 14. His annual compensation has been set at $51,312.56.
“Looking at his resume it’s obvious he is qualified,” Councilman Dan Bucci said. “He’s developed and initiated programs for the MetroParks,” Bucci said.
He is a great find for our community,” Mayor KC Zuber added. “He has a willingness to come in and do different things.”
Zuber noted Gerrone has initiated thousands of programs in his more than 30 years with the Metro Parks. He joined the Metro Parks as a naturalist in 1980 and became a naturalist supervisor for the Metro Parks in 1991. He is responsible for overseeing programming for eight Metro Parks including marketing, publishing newsletters, an e-newsletter and managing the Metro Parks website.
Avon Lake’s Recreation Director is responsible for recreational programs including youth, adult and senior programs, the new Ellen Trivonovich Aquatic Center, the Miller Road Park boat launch and special programs including the summer concert series and Light Up The Park festival.
Gerrone said he was thrilled with being approved by council, noting that he once worked not just for the community pool when he was in college, but actually worked with Ellen Trivonovich, the namesake of the city’s pool.
And while Gerrone is a naturalist he said that programs leaning in that direction are possible he said programs he initiates will be resident driven.
“I’ll be listening to what programs the residents are interested in,” he said.
He was instrumental in creating the Splash Zone, Lorain County Metro Parks' Aquatic and Fitness Center that opened last year in Oberlin.
Gerrone authored the Images of America, Lorain County Metro Parks, The First 50 Years, published in 2007.