Park Board Commissioner Erik Hanberg resigns following twelve years of service

Metro Parks Tacoma announcement.

Commissioner Hanberg announced at the February 28th Regular Park Board Meeting that he will be resigning effective March 31, 2022.

“After more than twelve years of serving in elected office, I have sadly come to the conclusion that my obligations to my family and my work have grown to the point that I need to reevaluate my role as a commissioner.”

DuPont Museum

Hanberg, currently Director of Audience Development at KNKX Public Radio as well as an author and entrepreneur, has served as a Metro Parks Commissioner since January of 2010 when he was appointed by the Board to fill the seat vacated by Ryan Mello. He was elected to keep his seat in 2011 and then elected again in 2017.

Some of the major District accomplishments during his tenure as a Parks Commissioner include:

  • Winning the 2019 National Recreation and Park Association’s “Gold Medal” Award, a top achievement in the industry that honors communities demonstrating excellence in planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship and program development.
  • Receiving accreditations from the Commission for Accreditation of Park & Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) for meeting rigorous industry standards as well as the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) which also ensures rigorously high standards of animal welfare, veterinary care, conservation, education, and Fort Nisqually Living History Museum’s accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums.
  • Passing of key policies to ensure equitable practices such as the Antiracist Resolution, R3220; Diversity, Inclusion & Accessibility Policy; and Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprise Policy.
  • Completing major capital projects thanks to the voters passing the 2014 bond:
    • Eastside Community
    • Dune Peninsula Park
    • Pacific Seas Aquarium
    • Swan Creek Upgrades
    • Peoples Pool Upgrades
Edward Jones - Bart Dalton

“It was wonderful to be able to deliver so many new projects all across Tacoma.” said Hanberg. “I’m particularly proud of our programming, especially as we serve underserved communities. I really liked watching the District grow and adapt to the needs of our community. Seeing the tangible results of the hard work of the staff has been rewarding and I know they will continue to keep up the good work.”

Hanberg who toured all 69 of Metro Parks’ properties with his father before becoming a commissioner says that he will continue to frequent all of the beautiful parks and amenities with his family.

“I want to thank Commissioner Hanberg for his leadership over the past 12 years as a member of the board, as well as for serving as its president in 2016 and 2021. It’s been an honor and a pleasure to serve alongside him,” said President Smith.

Tacoma Community College

President Smith will work with all of the Park Board members and legal counsel to determine the process by which a replacement commissioner will be selected and appointed. The appointment will be for the remainder of Commissioner Hanberg’s term which ends December 31, 2023. That appointment process will be shared with the public at a future park board meeting.

Metro Parks, which was established as the state’s first independent parks agency in 1907, manages over 2,900 acres of land, including regional attractions such as Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park, Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, and the W.W. Seymour Conservatory. The park district offers hundreds of recreational, environmental, and zoological programs that encourage people to play, learn and grow.

The Board of Park Commissioners governs Metro Parks Tacoma and is the policy-determining body for the park district. Commissioners serve six-year staggered terms, and currently include President Andrea Smith, Erik Hanberg, Tim Reid, Aaron Pointer and Rosie Ayala.

Head over Heals at Lakewood Playhouse

Source: The Suburban Times