15 Feb Minot Parks Executive Director, Ron Merritt announces his retirement
Minot Parks Executive Director, Ron Merritt announced his retirement Tuesday at a Special Board Meeting of the Minot Park District. Merritt has been with the Minot Park District since May 2, 1992 when he became a Zoo Keeper at Roosevelt Park Zoo. Merritt became the Director of the Roosevelt Park Zoo in 1998 followed by becoming the Executive Director of the Minot Park District in 2005. Ron has played a vital role in the success of the Minot Park District through the years.
“Many things have changed over the years, and I am proud of our many accomplishments. You always hope that you can make a difference in your place of work, to leave things better than they were when you started, and I do feel that is the case,” Merritt said in his letter of resignation. “Planning for the future has been and will continue to be a high priority for this organization. Partnerships with community organizations will also be important. I am very proud of being able to hire and retain great employees in key positions. They make our organization exceptional. I cannot say enough about the wonderful employees that work so hard every day. I certainly hope that any who step forward with interest in this position receive the consideration they deserve.”
During his career, Ron has assisted in the completion of the Hoeven Baseball Complex, Roosevelt Pool and Bath House, Hammond Tennis Complex, the combination of the parks and recreation boards, multiple facility upgrades, flood recovery, greenway development, Magic City Discovery Center partnership, and Outdoor Recreation Area Development. As both the zoo director and executive director of Minot Park District, he has earned many honors, including two successful Association of Zoos and Aquariums accreditations for the zoo, the Minot Chamber of Commerce Above and Beyond Award, and the Mayoral Coin. Under his leadership Minot Park District received the 1996 Golden Egg Award for the Penguin Exhibit and the 2009 NDRPA Golden Egg Award for Jack Hoeven Park. Ron received the 2014 NDRPA Fellow Award – now known as the Distinguished Professional Award.
Most Recently Merritt was inducted into the NDRPA Hall of Fame which is the highest honor bestowed on NDRPA Members. Ron has been an active member of NDRPA for 17 years and has served the Minot Park District for over 30 years.
Merritt thanked the Minot Board of Directors and the Citizens of Minot for their support.
“This has been a very rewarding career that has allowed me to make a difference in our community. It is time for someone else to take the helm, so to speak, and continue to move this organization forward,” he said.
The Minot Park District is truly grateful for Ron’s commitment to the Minot Community during his time as the Executive Director. Merritt has made Minot a better place to live, work and play for generations to come.