New director sought as Hoopingarner steps down

New director sought as Hoopingarner steps down
Submitted

John Hoopingarner, the MWCD’s executive director since 1989, has announced he will retire on May 31, 2020, after more than 30 years of service to the MWCD.

                        

The board of directors of the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District has begun the search for the next executive director, retaining Waverly Partners as its executive search firm. Joanne Limbach, board president, along with the four other MWCD board members, will work with Waverly Partners to identify qualified local, regional and national candidates.

“Our board, along with MWCD staff, has developed a position profile with the experience and leadership characteristics of our preferred candidate,” Limbach said. “We are open to executives with backgrounds in parks and recreation agencies, conservation-focused organizations, other kinds of nonprofits, private-sector entities or other related experience. A candidate with a commitment to our mission of responsible stewards dedicated to providing flood reduction, conservation and recreation in the Muskingum River Watershed is a priority.”

The position profile is available on the MWCD website at www.mwcd.org.

John Hoopingarner, the MWCD’s executive director since 1989, has announced he will retire on May 31, 2020, after more than 30 years of service to the MWCD.

A native of Tuscarawas County, Hoopingarner was appointed to his position with the MWCD on Sept. 1, 1989, at the age of 35. Prior to his appointment as executive director, he served as legal counsel to the MWCD for 10 years while in the private practice of law in New Philadelphia.

“It has truly been an honor to provide leadership to the MWCD," Hoopingarner said. "We are a unique organization dedicated to providing the benefits of flood reduction, conservation and recreation in the Muskingum River Watershed. Every day of my career has been both challenging and rewarding. It has been a privilege to work alongside a staff of responsible stewards so dedicated to our mission.”

When Hoopingarner succeeded Raymond E. Eichel in 1989, he became only the third person to lead the MWCD in its 86-year history. Bryce C. Browning was its first chief executive officer from 1933 until his retirement in 1965.

“As executive director of the MWCD, John’s leadership and dedication to the organization made a tremendous impact over the last 30 years,” Limbach said. “We are excited to celebrate with John as he approaches his upcoming retirement and are fortunate to have an exceptional staff and board, which gives us stability in this time of transition.”

Hoopingarner is looking forward to retirement and has pledged to assist the board of directors through the change of leadership.

“I hope to stay connected to the MWCD through my involvement with the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy Foundation, on which I serve as a member of the board of trustees. The nonprofit foundation exists to support the mission of the MWCD, a mission to which I am firmly committed,” Hoopingarner said.

For more information about the search, email search consultants Heidi Milosovic and Eric Peterson at MWCD@Waverly-Partners.com.

The MWCD is a political subdivision of the state, organized in 1933 to develop and implement a plan to reduce flooding and conserve water for beneficial public uses in the Muskingum River Watershed, the largest wholly contained watershed in Ohio. Since their construction, the 16 reservoirs and dams in the MWCD region have been credited for saving over $13.1 billion worth of potential property damage from flooding, according to the federal government, as well as providing popular recreational opportunities that bolster the region’s economy.

A significant portion of the reservoirs are managed by the MWCD, and the dams are managed for flood-risk management by the federal U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

For more information about the MWCD, visit www.mwcd.org.


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