2021 Outstanding Parks Professional Award Winner Kevin Bailey, Windham Parks & Recreation

It is with pleasure that I nominate our Parks Maintenance Foreman for this award, as I feel strongly that he is worthy of being honored. When I began my position in Windham in June 2015, Kevin was employed for 30 hours during the summer months and 15-20 hours during the winter months. It became quickly apparent that he made the most of the limited time he was allotted for general inspection and maintenance at 9 facilities totaling approximately 500 acres. During the FY16 budget process, the council listened to the long list of what Kevin attempted to accomplish with limited hours, and his position was elevated to full-time on a year-round basis. Since that time, his hours have been increased from 32-40 hours/week, which has been relatively easy to justify as his list of achievements continues to grow. Kevin diligently attends to his tasks independently each day and takes great personal pride in the parks and trails facilities that he oversees. Whereas in the early years of his position here (he has been employed since 2008), his focus was essentially on mowing and trash pick-up at each location, he has advanced far beyond that. His job description now requires him to be more directly involved in park planning, trail construction, completing or coordinating capital projects, and facility management. He also works closely with sub-contractors and supervises seasonal park laborers or community service volunteers. Recruiting seasonal help has been a challenge for the last two summers, so Kevin just picks up the slack and gets the job done. His winter duties include managing 2 ice skating rinks, plowing parking lots to keep our parks open and accessible, and grooming trails for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Being a life-long resident of the town of Windham, he is motivated to provide stellar service to the community, and he is always thinking about ways to improve what we offer. He is the face of the department in our parks and on our trails, and is friendly and caring, while also seeking ways to encourage people to be good stewards of our facilities. He has a very creative mind and has assisted the staff in problem-solving or identifying good solutions to issues that arise. He is also known to come up with unique program ideas and then will help in any way possible to get it done, whether it is constructing a life-size photo frame for the Summerfest Committee or rehabbing a donated utility trailer for use at our special events. Kevin prefers to be a behind-the-scenes type of employee and is quite humble when it comes to acknowledging the contributions he makes to our department and to the town. However, his co-workers recognize the very valuable role he plays in contributing to any successes we achieve. Kevin has accepted additional opportunities that have been provided to him, such as participating in SMART meetings for topics that apply to his job duties or attending the Playground Certification course offered through MRPA. He is the essence of a team player and will often aid the town’s Buildings and Ground crew when he realizes they are short-staffed. I believe Kevin assists us in advancing the professionalism of Parks and Recreation by the dedication he exhibits in providing quality outdoor recreation experiences to the residents of Windham.