Lisa Davol will be the next director of the Oconee County Parks and Recreation Department.
Oconee County Commission Chairman John Daniell recently announced the appointment.
Davol replaces John Gentry, who resigned last month to take a job as director of the Gwinnett County recreation department.
Davol has been with the department since 2004, first as administrator of athletic programs and since 2010 as deputy director. She previously served as interim director of the department when Gentry, a military reservist, was deployed to Afghanistan.
Before coming to Oconee County, Davol worked for Athens-Clarke County’s Leisure Services Department from 2000 to 2004, first as a program director and then for two years as the first facility supervisor when Southeast Clarke Park opened.
Davol has undergraduate and master’s degrees in education from the University of Georgia, and before getting into parks and recreation work was a high school teacher and coach.
Davol’s immediate concern as she takes over is to maintain facilities and programs at their current high level and keeping an eye on the upcoming construction of three new multipurpose athletic fields at Oconee Veterans Park.
She also will be at center stage as Oconee deals with what she said will be one of the department’s biggest challenges — planning for the county’s future parks and green space needs.
Gentry told Oconee commissioners earlier this year that program participation had grown from 4,500 in 2004 to 7,000 in 2016, and was on track to grow to about 9,000 by 2030.
That’s only one aspect of the parks’ usage, though.
As many as 50,000 people a year come to the community center in Oconee Veterans Park, and uncounted others use Oconee Veterans and other parks for walking and other activities, Davol said.