Bridgewater hires new director of parks and rec

Sandy Mair-Dodman takes on new role

Sandy Mair-Dodman, the former programming co-ordinator for the parks, recreation and culture department of the Town of Bridgewater will be permanently taking over Carol Pickings-Anthony’s position as director.

Ms Mair-Dodman has filled her former boss’s shoes since she left on a sick leave in August, but she will now be able to drop the “acting” portion of her title. She was approached by Ken Smith, the CAO of the town, when Ms Pickings-Anthony announced her retirement.

Ms Mair-Dodman has worked with town for over 25 years. She’ll now play a greater role in shaping the future of the department by being more involved with its financial end through creating its operational and financial budgets and working with the town’s council and various committees.

“I didn’t think the opportunity would arise, because our past director had been here for 30 years and I was happy in the position I’ve been in, but I really do appreciate the opportunity now to try something new and to fill this role,” said Ms Mair-Dodman. “I always felt that I could do it and now I have this opportunity, and I guess I have the opportunity to have my own stamp on the department that I wouldn’t have had as a program co-ordinator.”

Ms Mair-Dodman hopes to focus on Bridgewater’s active transportation and connectivity plan by maintaining and promoting the parks, green spaces and trails in the area. It is her personal priority to encourage healthy, active lifestyles in the community. She wants to develop a vision and a strategic plan for the department.

“I just really appreciate the town having faith in me because I have been in that middle management role, and I appreciate them giving me the opportunity to take a stronger role in the department,” said Ms Mair-Dodman.

Her former position will be filled by Heather Hanlon, who has been hired as the new program co-ordinator and will start April 1. Ms Hanlon has a bachelor of recreation and leisure studies from Brock University and a masters of science and eco-tourism from Edinburgh Napier University. She has worked with the Sackville Heights Community Centre and Treetop Trekking in Ontario.

As originally published in LighthouseNOW Progress Bulletin

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