Carolyn McKnight-Fredd Named Chair-Elect of NRPA

Ashburn, Va. (September 20, 2021)

Association elects board member with an exemplary record of leading impactful park and recreation programs

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), the nation’s leading advocate for parks and recreation, today announced the election of Carolyn McKnight-Fredd, CPRP, as chair-elect of its board of directors.

“On behalf of our entire board and staff, we are thrilled for Carolyn to take on this role,” said NRPA President and CEO Kristine Stratton. “During her more than three decades in parks and recreation, Carolyn has earned multiple awards for her work, leadership and service to the profession. She has the skills, passion and experience to strengthen NRPA and show that parks are essential to creating a better life for everyone.”

McKnight retired from her role as superintendent of the East Baton Rouge Recreation and Park Commission (BREC) in 2019 and has since founded Eagle Methods Management Consulting in Dallas. She brings civilian and military experience to bear, having served with distinction for more than 27 years, retiring from the Air National Guard at the rank of Colonel (O6), the first African American woman ever to achieve the rank in the history of the state of Texas.

“I am honored and excited to take on the duties of the chair of the NRPA Board of Directors,” said McKnight-Fredd. “I look forward to leading NRPA into a future where the full power of parks and recreation is widely recognized for creating a better life for everyone by building strong, healthy and resilient communities. I want to express appreciation to the extraordinary leadership provided by current chair Mike Kelly and the amazing NRPA staff.”

McKnight-Fredd previously served as an at-large member and secretary of the NRPA Board of Directors, as well as a number of roles for NRPA, including as accreditation commissioner for the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA); committee chair for the NRPA Baltimore Maryland Conference Education Program; NRPA/North Carolina State University Board Supervisors’ Management School instructor and chair of that board; Directors School instructor; chair of the Ethnic Minority Society; Mentoring Program Leader; and part of the National Gold Medal Committee.

She received the Exemplary Service Citation from the NRPA Board of Trustees in 2008 and also has been an American Academy of Park and Recreation Administrators Fellow since then.

McKnight-Fredd will begin her term as chair of the NRPA Board of Directors in September 2022.

The NRPA Board of Directors is responsible for policies that govern and direct the affairs of the association. Officers of the board are elected annually. Currently, Michael P. Kelly serves as chair of the NRPA Board of Directors.

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About the National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is the leading not-for-profit organization dedicated to building strong, vibrant and resilient communities through the power of parks and recreation. With more than 60,000 members, NRPA advances this mission by investing in and championing the work of park and recreation professionals and advocates — the catalysts for positive change in service of equity, climate-readiness, and overall health and well-being. For more information, visit  For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit