Awards & Honors
Park Board President Named Top Volunteer
Timothy J. Cassidy, President of the Peoria Park District Board of Trustees, received the 2009 Tom Connor Award for Volunteer Community Service at the annual Thanksgiving Community Luncheon on November 20, 2009.
Named for a former television broadcaster known for his volunteerism, this award is presented annually to a tri-county individual who has shown outstanding long-term commitment to the community. Nominees are judged on the length of service, impact of their participation on others and contribution to the community.
Cassidy has been a member of the Peoria Park District Board of Trustees for 22 years, becoming President in 1992. He has been re-elected President four times. As Park Board Trustee/President, Cassidy was cited for his work in the expansion of the Peoria Zoo, development of the Heart of Illinois Special Recreation Association, the RiverPlex Recreation and Wellness Center and the Peoria RiverFront. He has also worked extensively with PARC (Peoria Association for Retarded Citizens), the Peoria County Bar Association and the Peoria Notre Dame Parent Board Association. As a member of the March Madness Steering Committee, Cassidy was instrumental in bringing the annual Illinois State Basketball Tournament to Peoria.
Cassidy served as Vice President of the Illinois Association of Park Districts (IAPD) from 1992 to 1998; and as joint chairman of the IAPD/IPRA Joint Legislative Committee from 1993-1994. In 1994, Cassidy was recognized for his outstanding service as a co-chair of this committee. And in 2006, Cassidy was honored as IAPD Commissioner of the Year, an award given annually to a park commissioner who shows outstanding qualities in support of the promotion of parks, recreation and conservation. Cassidy also served four years (1993-1997) on the Board of Directors of the Great Lakes Association of the Great Lakes Regional Council for NRPA. The Peoria Park District has won the National Gold Medal Award twice (1994 and 2001) under Cassidy’s leadership.
PPD Wins Employer of the Year
On Wednesday, October 21, 2009 the Peoria Park District was named “Employer of the Year” for 2009 by the AAIM Employers’ Association. The District won in the mid-size company category (101 to 250 employees).
The Employers’ Association is a not-for-profit membership organization serving the employer community in 60 counties throughout Illinois plus Missouri and bordering communities in Iowa and Wisconsin. Employers’ Association members are diverse. Their nearly 600 members include private and public sector employers, representing a wide cross-section of industries, and ranging in size from fewer than twenty-five employees in “mom and pop” shops to thousands in Fortune 500 companies.
In order to be considered for the award, employers were required to demonstrate best practices in overcoming a business problem in addition to demonstrating practices in the areas of effective communication, encouraging and recognizing the value of employee input, encouraging and fostering employee development, demonstrating strong work/life practices and promoting a positive culture.
According to the judges, strong points within the District's applicaton included:
- Focus groups held for employees age 40 and younger in order to understand what they look for in an employer and what it would take for them to stay.
- Flexiblity in schedules to allow for work/life balance.
- The “Use Your Head” Program that addressed healthy choices in the areas of wellness, home safety and work safety.
Staff comments generated through the process included the following:
- “The Peoria Park District is not just a job, not just an organization you work for – we are a family.”
- “Of our 191 full-time staff, 101 have been with the district for 10 years or more. That says something about our organization.”
- “I’m proud to be a part of something that brings value to the community.”
For addition information on these awards, please visit www.eaconnect.com