Pfaff named head of parks department

January 01, 1995|By Phyllis Brill | Phyllis Brill,Sun Staff Writer

County Executive Eileen M. Rehrmann has named Joseph Pfaff, a 29-year veteran of the Baltimore County Recreation and Parks Department, as director of Harford County's Department of Parks and Recreation.

Mr. Pfaff, who is superintendent of regional maintenance in the Baltimore County system, will replace Robert Staab, who resigned recently as Harford's director after less than two years to join the administration of Baltimore County Executive C. A. Dutch Ruppersberger III.

"We are pleased to welcome a person with such a diversified background in parks and recreation," Mrs. Rehrmann said Thursday in announcing Mr. Pfaff's appointment. "He brings a broad range of experience in program management, maintenance and development of parks facilities."

Mr. Pfaff, 51, joined the Baltimore County Recreation and Parks Department in 1965 as a recreation center supervisor in Dundalk. In 1967, he moved to the Lutherville-Timonium area as a community supervisor coordinating recreational programs. He later became a program coordinator and area superintendent before assuming his current role in 1990.

As Baltimore County's head of regional maintenance, Mr. Pfaff is responsible for maintaining more than 10,000 acres of recreational land and about 100 buildings.

Harford County administration spokesman George Harrison said that Mrs. Rehrmann was looking for a candidate with program and maintenance experience. That's important, he said, because the county has some newly acquired parkland -- the 467-acre Swan Harbor Farm near Havre de Grace, for example -- which it will be responsible for developing and maintaining as recreational open space.

As Harford County's parks and recreation director, Mr. Pfaff will earn $59,259 annually and will supervise 53 employees. There are 2,237 acres of parkland at 50 locations under the direct administration of the county. In addition, the Parks and Recreation Department maintains ball fields and tennis courts at 49 school sites.

"This was an excellent opportunity to go into a growing county whose finances are in good shape and with a lot of young families, and apply what I've learned working in a large municipality," Mr. Pfaff said Friday.

He said he's looking forward to "working with the staff and trying out new ideas" in the development of natural areas, as well as in providing additional facilities to local recreational councils.

"I know the true meaning of grass-roots recreation and the role it plays in a growing community," he said.

Mr. Pfaff is the second Baltimore County parks administrator to join Harford County in two years. Mr. Staab, a former member of the House of Delegates from Dundalk who ran Baltimore County's parks department from 1986 to 1990, became Harford's director in February 1993.

Mr. Staab announced his resignation in November. He will join the Ruppersberger administration as chief of operating policy tomorrow.

Mr. Pfaff's appointment must be confirmed by the Harford County Council. He is expected to begin his duties Jan. 23.

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