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Lisa Westenberger, manager of The Commons, left, Amy Smart, Carter Oosterhouse, Tony Stewart, Jared Fogle, and April Williams, project and resource director for Columbus Parks and Recreation pose at the new Tony Stewart playground at Mead Village in Columbus Ind. Wednesday May 8, 2013. (Joe Harpring | The Republic)
From: Victoria Craig Griffin
Received: May 12
I have recently been deeply honored and humbled to have been a part of the Race to Play project as contributing sponsor. The city of Columbus and the Parks and Recreation Department are so lucky to have two very dedicated and wonderful women on their staff who made it such a success.
These two women have put in tireless hours, days and weeks to get this project off the ground.
I was deeply saddened to never once see in the news reports of the fantastic job that this team of two women had done. By getting the three major foundations and countless volunteers to come together and work to rebuild these four parks for the betterment of our children and future children was no small task.
These two women not only brought together these foundations but also ignited our passion and love for our community with several of us to open not only our hearts but our checkbooks to come along for this most enjoyable ride. They also put us on the national map with this project with other cities seeing just what we have accomplished in a short time.
These women have spent countless hours working on this project by securing private funding and securing grants to be used for these parks. I personally know that some of their days began at well before
7 a.m. and many nights they never lay their heads down to rest until well after midnight.
They got their staff and many hundreds of volunteers to get excited about just what they were doing. These long days took them away from their husbands and children who never said a word or complained because they are their biggest cheerleaders and believe in what they stand for.
We as a community are so very lucky to have these two women working for us. They are heroes in my eyes and in my heart. If any of you know April Williams or Lisa Friend Westenberger, please give them a shout or phone call or send them a message as to a job well done!
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