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Mike Cassidy
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Mike Cassidy Commissioner Community Service Award – FREE NOMINATION!

When asked how he wanted to be remembered, long-time park commissioner Mike Cassidy once said, "Doing something good for the community, contributing something for the future."

This annual award is presented to a commissioner whose volunteer service to his or her community emulates the vision and voluntary efforts demonstrated by Mike Cassidy to improve the quality of life for those in his community. Recipients of the Commissioner Community Service Award will have demonstrated the highest example of community service, personal integrity and ingenuity.


The recipient must:
1) Be an elected official and member of the Illinois Association of Park Districts.

2) Have demonstrated tireless assistance and leadership through contribution of time, services or volunteer efforts for the community he or she serves.

3) Honorees are recognized for fostering local partnerships and being involved with the success of community programs and organizations such as, but not limited to, civic, nonprofit, religious and educational.

IAPD Award Nomination Procedure
Nomination Deadline:  5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 13 

Please scroll down to complete the award application fields below. The "Narrative of Contributions" is a biography of contributions and accomplishments, which should be sent separately. In that field, please type "to come as separate attachment." 

All nominations must include a typed biography of contributions and accomplishments not to exceed 750 words. Nominations must also include a photo of the nominee attached as a .JPEG, .TIFF or .EPS file (at least 300 dpi.)  Nominations may also include supportive materials (not to exceed 5 pages or 5 attachments) such as newspaper clippings, additional photos of nominee, etc.  All nomination materials must be submitted via e-mail to IAPD Public Relations Director Bobbie Jo Hill.  The typed biography of contributions and accomplishments must be formatted as follows:

  • Times New Roman or Arial font
  • 12 point font size
  • Single spaced
  • Saved as a .pdf
  • The following information centered at the top of the page:
    - Agency name
    - Nominee's name
    - Award nomination title
    - Contact name, agency, phone number and e-mail address (of person submitting the nomination)

About Mike Cassidy...

Mike Cassidy spent more than 35 years as a commissioner of the Freeport Park District. During his years of involvement with the park and recreation field, he demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities in support and promotion of park districts, forest preserves, conservation and recreation agencies. He devoted much of his time to serving several terms on the board of the Illinois Association of Park Districts, working to advance parks, recreation and conservation statewide. Cassidy was a hands-on, involved and deeply committed board member who had the outstanding quality of being a good listener. He maintained that his years with the park board were a pleasure and the most rewarding experience of his life. "It's more than a service to the community,” Cassidy said. "It's a service to yourself because if you really get into it you'll find that the joy of it is absolutely incomparable.”

Past Recipients of the Mike Cassidy Commissioner Community Service Award
2001 - Harris H. Agnew, Rockford Park District
2002 - James F. Cooke, St. Charles Park District
2003 - Martha Weiss, Buffalo Grove Park District
2004 - Fred Hohnke, Woodridge Park District
2005 - Lois M. Nickson, Macomb Park District
2006 - Mary Garrison, Winnetka Park District
2007 - Steve Pennock, Oregon Park District
2008 - Wally Frasier, Mundelein Park & Recreation District
2009 - Nathaniel Martin, Rockford Park District
2010 - Ernie Shymanik, Mundelein Park & Recreation District
2011 - Wayne Motley, Waukegan Park District
2012 - Mike Renner, Cary Park District
2013 - Linda Johnson, Crete Park District
2014 - Patrick Nevins, Homewood-Flossmoor Park District
2015 - Dr. Larry Reiner, Buffalo Grove Park District
2016 - Penelope "Penny" Randel, Northbrook Park District
2017 - Kevin Dolan, Mundelein Park & Recreation District
2018 - Ian Linnabary, Rockford Park District  

This award will be presented Friday, January 24, 2020 during the All-Conference Luncheon at the annual IAPD/IPRA Soaring to New Heights Conference.