NRPA Launches Inaugural Business Council

Ashburn, Va. (February 8, 2022)

Collaboration between business and park and recreation professionals to spur innovations for improving local communities.   

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), the nation’s leading advocate for parks and recreation, today announces the launch of its Business Council — a collaboration that will strengthen the connections between the essential role of parks and recreation and the business sector.

“Local park and recreation agencies generated more than $166 billion in U.S. economic activity and supported 1.1 million jobs from their operations and capital spending in 2017 alone. The essential services our park and recreation professionals provide are critical lifelines into communities across the country that improve quality of life for everyone,” said NRPA President and CEO Kristine Stratton. “We are thrilled to launch this new initiative and bring Business Council members together to explore, share and deploy powerful park and recreation solutions.”

The NRPA Business Council brings together the business sector and park and recreation professionals to solve common challenges together, fuel innovation, foster activism and advocacy, and promote research to enhance the quality of life for all.

“The NRPA Business Council will improve communications between the public and private sectors. This increased dialogue can help bring more innovative products and services to the park and recreation field faster,” said Paula Sliefert, NRPA Business Council Chair and Senior Manager, Sports Fields and Grounds, The Toro Company. “The Toro Company is proud to invest in industries like parks and recreation, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Business Council to promote solutions that build stronger, healthier and more resilient communities.”

The inaugural NRPA Business Council comprises strategic thinkers and collaborative decision-makers, representing businesses and allies who care deeply about parks and recreation. Business Council members also represent organizations that have demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and support the advancement of DEI in park and recreation programs, policies and practices. 

Business Council members can access branding opportunities, as well as powerful thought leadership and engagement opportunities. The inaugural NRPA Business Council members include:

For more information about the NRPA Business Council, visit To learn more about NRPA, visit    


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