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Posted on: March 5, 2020

Dave Angeles, New Park Services Manager, Settles In

Dave Angeles WEB

It’s only been a few weeks, but the decision to lure Dave Angeles from the City of Allen is proving to be a good one. Dave assumed the park services manager position vacated by the current Parks & Recreation department (PARD) Director Ron Smith. This new Team Plano member opened up about his life and future plans:

TP:  Where were you born?
DA:  Grand Rapids, Michigan

TP:  Married/single, children, pets?
DA:  Married 14 years to wife Becky. We have two children, Annabelle (9) and Abram (5). Our family includes an 11-year-old Lab mix named Mocha.

TP:  What are the responsibilities of the parks services manager?
DA:  I work with an exceptional group to manage the Parks System, which includes parks ground and infrastructure, nature preserves, athletic fields, special use facilities, public facilities ground, and medians. The Parks division collaborates on project management, long range CIP and operation planning, and determining present and future needs. I’ll also support PARD through public relations duties and being a resource to citizen boards and the community.

TP:  What was your first day on the job like?
DA:  My first day was spent in New Hire Orientation, followed by a few days of PeopleSoft Trainings and introductions to co-workers. I was impressed with their welcoming environment, expertise and professionalism. I also researched the organization’s strategic plan, department master plan and initiatives to better understand Plano’s priorities and direction.

TP:  What drew you to this career path?
DA:  I’ve been involved with parks, recreation and facility management for 16+ years. Learning, engaging and serving a community just seemed to fit my servant leadership approach and provides internal satisfaction. I’ve had great opportunities over my career to blend an entrepreneurial approach to a municipal setting. Plus, finding solutions and enhancing existing strong operations is a motivator for me.

TP:  What are your primary focuses this first year on the job?
DA:  I quickly learned there’s an exceptional staff here, and I have three areas to highlight:

  • Learn and Understand
    Learn the organization’s current practices, history, the community and the park system. To make good decisions, I need to understand some things. My initial month was spent in the field with staff at different levels of the organization which allowed me to learn the system and hear feedback and ideas. The existing staff is tenured, knowledgeable and professional – I value their insight. I’m a creative thinker and hope to infuse some new ideas into existing practices. PARD is a national leader in the field and I want to ensure that reputation is maintained.
  • Communicate and Collaborate
    Communication and collaboration support City and department initiatives. I want to engage the public to identify opportunities where we can continue to adapt and grow with our changing community. Internally, work with other divisions when possible (i.e. current discussions between parks maintenance and urban forestry about enhancing our tree canopy). Collaborations like this help provide excellent quality of life to Plano residents.
  • Maximize Technology 
    I’m a proponent of technology, so ensuring we are leveraging max capabilities of our software as a service (SAAS) applications is important. Reviewing how software is being used internally and externally is a priority that we should systematically review. Maximizing technology in the right ways can provide exceptional operational data, as well as provide excellent resources to Plano residents.

TP:  What’s your favorite sport/team?
DA:  I follow college athletics primarily, and Michigan State Spartans are my team of choice. Although I’ve softened over the years and just consider myself a Big Ten Conference fan!

TP:  Finally, do you have a favorite quote?
DA:  I’m a cyclist, so I tend to lean toward bicycles for inspiration! This approach is useful when engaging your community, coworkers and family as well!

“It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle." – E. Hemingway

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