This initiative will build a network of informed people to help promote the message of how important parks and recreation offerings are to a community and provide agencies with the resources to help adopt best practices and sustainable and expanded funding models that recognize economic impact.
Eric M. Call is the Director of the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department where for more than 35 years he has been a recognized leader in the parks and recreation industry. He currently oversees an award-winning 103 parks, 1,075 employees and a $77 million annual operating budget – the 11th largest park system in the nation. He is a native of Palm Beach County and a 1983 graduate of the University of Florida where he was drafted twice by Major League Baseball’s Atlanta Braves and New York Yankees and a member of the USA Baseball Team. He is a strong advocate for both professional and amateur sports. Over his long career, Eric has recognized and been a champion for the benefits of parks and recreation services in the community particularly those related to health and wellness, youth enrichment, environmental stewardship and economic impact. Present professional affiliations include President, Palm Beach County Sports Commission; and Board Member, National Association of County Parks and Recreation Officials (NACPRO). Under Eric’s leadership in 2018, the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department was awarded the National Gold Medal for Excellence in Parks and Recreation Management.
Eleanor Warmack has served the Florida Recreation and Park Association since 1987 and as its Executive Director since 1990. She oversees programs serving the parks and recreation profession and association members, including advocacy efforts to promote the value of parks and recreation services to residents and visitors of the State of Florida. She is a graduate of The Florida State University College of Business, the US Chamber of Commerce’s Institutes for Organization Management, has served as Chairman of the Board of the Florida Society of Association Executives, the Tallahassee Society of Association Executives, and is a member of the Tallahassee Community College Hall of Fame.
Bryan Nipe has 15 years of experience in a management role, 10 of which are in the parks and recreation field. Bryan is currently the Parks and Recreation Director for the City of Lake Mary where he and his team oversee city facilities, building maintenance, beautification, events, recreation programs and the renowned Lake Mary Events Center. Prior to coming to Lake Mary, Bryan worked for the Seminole County Leisure Services Department as a Division Manager and in South Florida for various consulting engineering firms as an Environmental Specialist. He has a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture, a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Economics, and is a Certified Arborist and LEED Accredited Professional.
T. Michael Stavres has over 30 years in local government experience associated with parks and recreation and municipal administration. He has worked with the Cities of Lakeland, Temple Terrace, St. Petersburg, and Orange County. He has spent the past 17 years with the City of Winter Haven serving as Parks & Recreation Director, Community Services Director, since 2016 as the Assistant City Manager. He has a Master’s Degree in Recreation & Leisure Services Administration and is a Certified Public Manager and Certified Parks & Recreation Professional.
Dr. Janet E. Fulton is an epidemiologist and Chief of the Physical Activity and Health Branch in the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Texas-Houston, School of Public Health. She has been at CDC for many years studying patterns of physical activity in the US population and working to make opportunities for physical activity a national priority, most recently by advancing a new national initiative Active People, Healthy Nation.
Dr. Fulton has published over 100 scientific articles on the epidemiology and promotion of physical activity. She is the 2010 recipient of the American Heart Association, Steven N. Blair Award for Excellence in Physical Activity Research. She is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association.
Dr. Tom Tomerlin served as the Assistant City Manager for the City of Lake Mary, Florida. He was responsible for guiding and implementing the City’s economic development strategy, as well as directing various functions for the City. Dr. Tomerlin is a seasoned economist with over 20 years of experience in the analysis of both public and private sector issues. Tom has experience in a variety of fields including economic development, real estate, and land use decision making. Tom was a Professor of economics at Northwest Florida State College and continued as an Adjunct Professor at Stetson University in Deland, Florida. Tom’s teaching experience includes microeconomics, macroeconomics, quantitative methods, and statistics. Tom earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Florida and his Master of Science degree from Clemson University, South Carolina.
Felicia Donnelly, AICP has spent 28 years helping communities achieve their vision in both the private and public sectors in the areas of government operations, parks and recreation, community engagement, land use planning and transportation. She is committed to innovation, creativity and the creation of lasting community landscapes. She has a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning, and is a certified planner. She served as the President of the Florida Recreation and Park Association in 2018-2019, and the City of Oldsmar as their Assistant City Manager/Economic Development Director.
Dev Pathik founded Sports Facilities Advisory in 2003 and is widely regarded as an industry thought-leader who has contributed to the well-being of communities around the world. Dev is a passionate social entrepreneur and innovator who has dedicated more than 25 years to the development of numerous businesses that empower and develop communities. Dev’s leadership has produced facilities that integrate traditional sports with special events, adventure sports, education, leadership-development, and amusement to turn early concepts into financeable and sustainable facilities that make a difference in communities. Dev is a sought after public speaker, leadership mentor, and advisor to public and private owners.
Evan began his career with more than 9 years in facility operations and as a program manager within one of the largest YMCA systems in the U.S. Evan joined Sports Facilities Advisory in 2012 as a business analyst, Account Executive. Today Evan serves as COO of SFA overseeing the company’s customer service and delivery systems as well as the team of strategic advisors, business analysts, project managers, and research specialists who produce SFA’s market research, feasibility, and financing services. Since joining SFA, Evan has served a portfolio of over 400 projects totaling more than $4.5 billion in planned and operational sports tourism, community recreation, and large-scale, master-planned sport, recreation, wellness, and entertainment destinations. Evan holds a Master’s Degree in Sport Management from University of Florida and formerly served as operations director for the largest YMCA branch in the Tampa Bay region.
Dan began his career in facility management of an indoor sports venue in the Northeast United States. For several years, he learned the day-to-day operations of sports and recreation facilities, holding a variety of positions from coach to manager on duty to sports program manager. This experience equipped him for a transition to the planning and analysis of new facility developments with Sports Facilities Advisory. Dan joined SFA in 2012 as a market research and document specialist, and today serves as a Strategic Advisor, leading SFA’s team of market specialists and business analysts through the development of market studies, financial forecasts, economic impact analyses, feasibility studies, and existing facility optimization plans. His work in this area is focused on serving SFA’s clients to provide the most accurate and reliable information possible through dynamic financial and economic impact forecasting to create facility models that fulfill client goals as well as SFA’s mission to positively impact the lives of its clients and the communities they serve.
Gary has more than 25 years of operational, marketing and strategic partnership experience across a diverse set of elite sports, fitness, performance, recreation and entertainment venues. Gary currently helps to lead Sports Facilities Advisory’s team of business analysts and researchers in assessing market opportunities, producing feasibility studies and delivering institutional-grade financial pro formas. His role is to ultimately provide the strategies and advice that improve both the fundability and financial performance of projects.
Since joining Sports Facilities Advisory, Jared has worked on a portfolio of over 80 projects totaling more than $200 million in planned and operational recreation, wellness, sports tourism, and entertainment destinations. Jared joined the SFA and SFM Team after spending several years working as a marketing consultant while he completed his Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Tampa. During his time working as a marketing consultant Jared assisted local companies in recognizing, developing, and implementing growth strategies based on the individual company’s needs and markets. Previously Jared had experience working in client service, sales, and business development for companies in the Tampa Bay Area like Catalina Marketing and Clickbooth LLC. Sports have always been a passionate part of Jared’s life; this is especially true while he was attending the University of South Florida for his undergraduate degree.
Prior to joining Sports Facilities Advisory, Richard has previously worked for the Tampa Bay Rays, Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Richard earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of South Florida. Additionally, Richard is a graduate from the University of South Florida’s Vinik Sport & Entertainment Management where he earned an MBA and MS in Sport & Entertainment Management. He brings his analytical background and experiences to his current role and SFA projects.