Susan Eaves is a graduate of Southern Illinois University and Texas Woman’s University with a B.S. and M.A. degree in Parks and Recreation Administration, respectively. She is married to Dan, a graduate of Texas Tech in Engineering. They met while working in Yellowstone National Park during college. They have 4 children - Kelli, Daniel, Lisette and Mark and 2 grandchildren - Briana and Lucas and another grandchild due in April, 2011.
Susan has been a parks and recreation professional for 40 years. She began her career in Arlington, TX and worked in Arlington for 14 years.She left the position of Supt. of Recreation in Arlington to become the Texas Recreation and Park Society's (TRAPS) first, full-time Executive Director, a position she held for 6 years. After TRAPS, Susan joined the Fort Worth Parks and Community Services Department for four years as District Superintendent. During her tenure there, Fort Worth won the National Gold Medal and two Texas Gold Medals.
Susan left Fort Worth in 1996 to become the Director of Parks and Recreation in Lancaster, TX. During the 6+ years she was in Lancaster, the PARD built over $20 million in capital improvements including a $9.7 million, 60,000 sq. ft. Recreation Center and Indoor Water Park on a 270-acre Community Park. Susan negotiated with the Texas Rangers and Royce Clayton Foundations to build the first municipal Texas Rangers Youth Baseball Field in Lancaster for a total cost of $300,000. Susan wrote six grants totaling over $5.2 million.
After completing these accomplishments in Lancaster, Susan started her own business in January, 2003 - VISIONS IN ACTION. It is primarily a grant writing, parks and recreation consulting and special events planning company. Her current clients include: Grand Prairie Parks and Recreation Department (consulting) and the Arlington Historical Society (writing 20 grants for a $2.6 million downtown Historic Railroad Park project).
Susan served on the APRS Board for two 3-year terms. She is a Past President of TRAPS and has received the TRAPS Young Professional, Fellow, President's Award and Honorary Life Member Award. She has also received the NRPA SW Region Young Professional and Fellow Award. Susan is a Founding Charter Member of the Texas Parks and Recreation Foundation Board from 1979 to present, Vice-President and President. She is also a Founding Board Member of Texas Senior Games and a Board Member for 16 years and Co-founder of the North Texas Recreation Association in 1970 - Past President. In 1995, Susan was recognized as the "Distinguished Recreation Alumni" at Southern Illinois University.
Susan retired from the City of Dallas on August 31, 2007. During her first year of retirement, she was appointed to the Arlington, TX Parks and Recreation Board and the River Legacy Parks Foundation Board. She is still serving on the Texas Parks and Recreation Foundation Board and is President-Elect for 2008-2009 and President - 2009-11. In 2009, she chaired the City of Arlington Park Bond Campaign Committee, which was successful in passing a $15.5 million park bond package.
Susan returned to part-time work in parks and recreation in March, 2010 with the Grand Prairie PARD. She is planning special events and programs at Grand Prairie's new recreation center - The Summit - built exclusively for active adults 50 years and up. It is the first recreation center in the country dedicated to "seniors only". Susan is still very active in the Texas Recreation and Park Society and in planning TRAPS' 75th Anniversary in 2012.
She is an alumni advisor for the Kappa Eta Chapter of the Sigma Kappa National Sorority at Texas Christian University and President of the Arlington/Ft. Worth Sigma Kappa Alumnae Chapter (2009-11). [updated December 2010]