Date: June 15, 2020
Contact: Carrie Dittman, Centerville-Washington Park District,
Subject: Centerville-Washington Park District Announced as Finalist for the 2020 National Gold Medal Award in Parks and Recreation

CENTERVILLE, OH: The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration (AAPRA), in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), recently announced the Centerville-Washington Park District (CWPD) as a finalist for the 2020 National Gold Medal Awards for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. This is the second time in three years CWPD has been named a finalist for the award.

Founded in 1965, the Gold Medal Awards program honors communities in the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship, program development, professional development and agency recognition. Applications are separated into six classes, with five classes based on population and one class for armed forces. The Centerville-Washington Park District is a finalist in the Class IV (population 30,001-75,000) category.

Agencies are judged on their ability to address the needs of those they serve through the collective energies of community members and staff. The Centerville-Washington Park District joins three other finalists in their class that will compete for grand honors this year.

A panel of five park and recreation professionals reviews and judges all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both the local and national levels.

Park District Director Arnie Biondo said, “It is an honor to be recognized as one of the best park and recreation systems in the nation. During the pandemic, many have turned to parks for rest, exercise, comfort and renewal, serving as a reminder to us all how important parks are to quality of life. We are lucky to be in a community that has always recognized the high value of parks.”

This year’s finalists will compete for Grand Plaque Award honors this summer, and the six Grand Plaque recipients will be announced during the 2020 NRPA Annual Conference, which will be held virtually in October.

For more information on the Gold Medal Awards, visit or


The Centerville-Washington Park District operates eight community parks, nine nature parks, and 34 neighborhood parks encompassing more than 1,000 acres in Centerville and Washington Township. For more information about the Centerville-Washington Park District, please call (937) 433-5155 or visit

The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration is a non-profit organization founded to advance knowledge related to the administration of recreation and parks; to encourage scholarly efforts by both practitioners and educators that would enhance the practice of park and recreation administration; to promote broader public understanding of the importance of parks and recreation to the public good; and, to conduct research, publish scholarly papers and sponsor seminars related to the advancement of park and recreation administration. For more information, visit

The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all Americans have access to parks and recreation for health, conservation and social equity. Through its network of 60,000 recreation and park professionals and advocates, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit