Parks volunteer receives National Humanitarian Award

by Kim Robins and Quinton Sheppard - Posted on Dec 08, 2010 - 04:03 PM

Photo: Gloucester Parks, Recreation and Tourism volunteer Chris Clifford received the Humanitarian Award from the National Recreation and Parks Association, presented in Minnesota this fall.

Gloucester Parks, Recreation and Tourism volunteer Chris Clifford received the Humanitarian Award from the National Recreation and Parks Association, presented in Minnesota this fall.

Two awards for volunteer efforts to improve local parks and recreation facilities were announced by Gloucester Parks, Recreation and Tourism Director Carol Steele at the Gloucester Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday.

Chris Clifford, a local businessman who serves as the chairman of the Park Partners, Inc., "friends of the park" non-profit group, and as president of the Baystars FC traveling soccer club, received the National Humanitarian Award from the National Recreation and Park Association in late October. He received a standing ovation from all seven supervisors following the public presentation of the award.

Clifford has spent countless hours on excavators and bulldozers, building and improving parks for the county. With no capital improvement funds coming to local parks for several years, park sites would have been left undeveloped if not for Clifford’s work to construct, seed, irrigate, mow and maintain recreational fields, according to Steele.

Clifford’s accomplishments have included constructing 12 soccer fields on public school property, creating a parking lot and athletic field for a new park, grading the site for a new playground, repairing drainage problems and constructing a public boat landing pier.