Parks director honored for 45 years of service

Working for the city as director of the Parks and Recreation Department is more than just a job for Roger Hall. It is a vocation and a passion.

And, after 45 years, he has no doubts about the importance he places on his work.

Hall was honored on Tuesday, January 24 by the city council for his service to the city.

“I feel honored to be honored here. It’s kind of unique; not many people stay in the job this long, but I love my job and it’s great that they take the time to do it for me “, did he declare.

“Roger, obviously you’re the face of Parks and Rec. You’re also the face of Boulder City. I appreciate that and I appreciate your friendship,” Mayor Joe Hardy said.

“There aren’t many people who stick around long enough to live on in the legacy they helped create. …it’s a really special time to have the chance to celebrate your legacy that you’re still building,” said Councilman Steve Walton.

Councilor Cokie Booth called it “a blessing to this whole community”.

Hall is currently the longest-serving municipal employee. But for him, “it’s as if it were yesterday” that he started working for the city and he still remembers very well that day in August 1977 when it was 115 F, an environment very different from that of Greeley, Colorado, where he lived and went. at school.

plant roots

He said one of the reasons he stayed in Boulder City so long was because he wanted his family to have roots.

The son of a 30-year Air Force veteran, Hall traveled the world growing up, living in places like Japan, Canada and Germany.

He graduated from high school in 1971 while the family was stationed in Munich. He also earned an associate degree in Germany, from the University of Maryland as part of its overseas program.

From there, he enrolled at the University of Northern Colorado at Greeley, where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Recreation Administration.

Hall, who said he followed the career path of his dreams, noted that he was one of the lucky few people who was able to apply everything he learned in college to his profession.

Hall learned about Boulder City from a friend and colleague, Chuck Reynolds, for whom he served as an undergraduate assistant in the intramural department at the University of Northern Colorado. When Reynolds became recreation supervisor for Boulder City, he called his friend and asked him to start an athletic program.

“I was right out of college,” Hall said.

But the part-time job was perfect for the sports enthusiast who played basketball, soccer, baseball, and football.

Many firsts

When Hall started working for the city’s recreation department, there were only three employees. He was the sports coordinator until Rich Robles, the recreation supervisor, left. He was appointed director of the department in 1984.

During his career, Hall helped establish a volunteer program and secure sponsorships to cover the costs. He also oversaw the construction of the final nine holes of the city’s first municipal golf course and served as the pool’s first manager.

Hall recalls the early days of the ministry, when everything was done – from planning programs to implementing and directing them. They even cleaned gymnasiums, he said.

Today, the service has nine employees, including four janitors. He said his staff are great and can do a lot with the resources they have.

They also rely heavily on their volunteers, who help organize events and serve as coaches.

The Boulder City Department of Parks and Recreation offers a variety of programs and classes, catering to everyone from toddlers to centenarians.

“I am very proud of our accomplishments,” he said. “I would oppose any other department.”

During her career, Hall and her department have won numerous state and national awards, including the Nevada Governor’s Tourism Development Award; 1993 Nevada League of City City of Innovation Award; and Silver State Legacy in 2021 for his work with the Damboree.

He was also inducted into the Hall of Fame for Excellence in Education in 2002 and presented, along with his wife, Tracey, the Alice Isenberg Award for Community Achievement in 2009 by the Boulder City Chamber of Commerce.

Part of the community

Hall said his favorite part of the job is working with staff members, both in his department and in other departments around the city.

During his tenure, Hall worked for nine city managers and with countless city council members.

Besides the department’s growth, Hall said the overall growth of the community has been the biggest change he’s seen in the past 45 years. When he moved to Boulder City, the population was about 6,000. Now it’s closer to 16,000.

In addition to his work for the city, Hall has become an integral part of the Boulder City community. He is a member of Boulder City Elks Lodge No. 1682, has served as chairman of the Damboree Committee since 1995, and has been a member of the Boulder City Sunrise Rotary club for 32 years. Recently, he joined the Independent Review Board at the Southern Nevada State Veterans Home, where his mother, Erma Hall, now lives.

“Roger is a valuable asset to the community. He is a dedicated member and past president of Boulder City Sunrise Rotary. We all continue to benefit not only from Roger’s public service, but also from his Service Above Self approach with his community service,” said Eddie Garcia, Rotary club president.

When he’s not working, Hall said he enjoys traveling with his wife in their RV. Last year they rode 2,276 miles across five states.

He also enjoys fishing, hunting and photography and is often seen behind the camera lens at community events.

And, of course, he said he was happy to spend time with his four children and eight grandchildren, who live nearby.

Although he doesn’t currently plan to retire, Hall said it’s not as far off as it used to be.

“There’s always this possibility of retirement,” said Hall, who turns 70 in June. “I had a great career. It’s a wonderful place.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

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