August 5, 2019


Villa Park, Illinois – August 5, 2019 – The NAPF, governed by a board of directors of 15 dedicated volunteers, recently completed a long-range strategic plan that positions the NAPF for significant membership growth, increased membership benefits, and organizational career opportunities. The launch of a Park Foundation School in early November 2019, a 4 day comprehensive workshop setting at the famed Oglebay National Training Center in Wheeling WV, is among one of the more current significant educational offerings of the NAPF focused on strengthening the strategies, effectiveness, and relevance of local park foundations.

“I am proud to announce to our members, prospective members, and of course our sponsors, the launch of the Park Foundation School, the first NAPF educational member benefit that provides CEUs to our members and prospects.,” said Mark Young, board chair of the NAPF. “We are especially excited to bring this school to market with our partners, NC State and the famed Oglebay National Training Center.”

The Park Foundation School will be directed by Mr. Tom O’Rourke, a career park and recreation professional who formerly served as executive director of Charleston County Parks and Recreation as well as the executive director of the Parklands Foundation of Charleston County (SC). He currently serves as a professor of practice at Clemson University. “Mr. O’Rourke has assembled an amazing faculty and curriculum for the inaugural Park Foundation School,” said Donald Ortale, Executive Director of the NAPF. “Our students will come away from this experience with in depth skills, knowledge, and best practices currently not offered within their local communities.” Students do not need to be members of the NAPF to attend the Park Foundation School. For NAPF membership information or for more information and/or to register your seat for the Park Foundation School, contact Donald Ortale at or call 630-965-1000.

The NAPF, headquartered in the western suburbs of Chicago, was granted IRS 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt status in October of 2014. The NAPF, with local park foundation members in over 25 different states, helps start and/or strengthen local park foundations across the country and recently registered its first international member.

In other NAPF news, the NAPF board of directors has approved to retain the services of their founding Executive Director Donald A. Ortale for an extended term. Mr. Ortale will continue as executive director and lead the day-to-day operations of the NAPF.

June 10, 2019


May 23, 2019                                   814-234-4272                                                                                                      

 Pennsylvania Park and Recreation Professionals Day

 July 19 at a park near you!


What is a park without those who keep them safe, clean and ready to use? Who brings life-enriching services to all ages and abilities?


Park and recreation professionals and their volunteer cohorts. That’s who!


On July 19, celebrate the normally unsung services of some 8,000 Pennsylvania park and recreation professionals, along with thousands of other volunteers who contribute to our well being by serving on Boards, Committees, Commissions, Friends, Neighborhoods, Trails and other groups, by visiting a park on the first ever Pennsylvania Park and Recreation Professionals Day.


Pennsylvanians are blessed to own more than 6,000 community parks and 12,000 miles of trails in every nook and county, and 121 (award-winning!) state parks, with one within 25 miles of nearly every resident. And along with them are countless playgrounds, pools, beaches, campsites, marinas, picnic areas, athletic fields, skate parks, dog parks, festival venues, gardens, visitor centers, historic and cultural attractions, and many other recreational facilities and amenities.


The healthful value and relative importance that Pennsylvanians place on their parks and natural areas is shown in the fact that, although Pennsylvania is the 33rd largest state, only Alaskans and Californians have more park land.


Pennsylvania Park and Recreation Professionals Day is coordinated by the Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society to honor those who plan, provide, and operate our parks, trails, programs and facilities for all our citizens.


This third Friday in July, visit a favorite or nearby park to bask in its all its many benefits, as well as show a little appreciation to the programmers, managers, maintainers, landscapers, facilitators, lifeguards, coaches, event organizers and caretakers who enhance the experience for all of us.




The Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society (PRPS) is the principal statewide association providing professional development, leadership, advocacy and resources for those working and volunteering in the parks and recreation field.

May 15, 2019

Founding NAPF board members and leaders of the NAPF Fund Development Committee, Ron Lehman and Don Jessen meet with Steve Pratapas, an experienced non-profit consultant, to discuss fund development strategies. Steve recently was successful in working with the board of the Friends of Channahon Park District, a proud member of the NAPF, to help Channahon raise over 1 million dollars in capital campaign funds

Contact Us


National Association of Park Foundations

54 E. St. Charles Road, Suite #7

Villa Park, IL. 60181



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