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Minneapolis Parks Foundation > Common Ground > News > From our Board Chair, Sarah Dunaway, and Vice Chair, Jasmine Russell: Executive Director Search

From our Board Chair, Sarah Dunaway, and Vice Chair, Jasmine Russell: Executive Director Search

January is a month rich with potential. It provides us reason to reflect on successes of the past year and a chance to anticipate the year ahead – and for the Minneapolis Parks Foundation, this January is also a time for celebration and change.

In 2023, we accomplished a lot on behalf of our parks, including successfully advocating for additional state and local funding, advancing a bold vision for the North Commons Park expansion, investing in collaborative, community-led park projects and programming through our People for Parks Fund, and supporting improvements throughout the citywide parks system. These many accomplishments serve as both evidence and inspiration for what we can continue to achieve together under the Parks Foundation’s mission to transform lives through parks. For a full recap of our work this year, take a look at our Impact Report, and to learn more about the full breadth of accomplishments seen in our park system this past year, check out the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board’s 2023 Year in Review.

January also marks a moment of important change at the Parks Foundation. Executive Director Tom Evers will wrap up his tenure on January 18 after nearly a decade leading the Minneapolis Parks Foundation toward its robust future.  We are fortunate to have had generous lead time to thoughtfully prepare for Tom’s departure and have been working closely with kpCompanies on evaluating the skills and experience needed for a transformative leader to move the organization forward into its next exciting chapter.

While we advance our search for this expert, we’re thrilled to have an experienced community leader step in to bridge the transition. Parks Foundation Board member and nonprofit consultant, Jocelyn Hale will serve as interim executive director through this spring while our Board continues to work with kpCompanies to finalize our search for a permanent executive director in the coming months. 

In the meantime, our staff will continue to advance the important mission of the Minneapolis Parks Foundation. Our goal for 2024 is simple: to continue to support and advance the transformative parks in the Minneapolis park system by aligning community vision and philanthropic investment.

If you are reading this – you are already part of our mission in some way. Thank you! We do not expect anything less than extraordinary in our future and are grateful to have your support. We hope you continue to strive with us to make our parks even better for years to come.

YOUR DONATION helps ensure the parks in our city remain accessible, equitable and serving everyone.