Prairie Township names recreaction center director

By Amanda Amsel
Staff Writer

James Gant was named the new director of the Prairie Township recreation center.
James Gant was named the new director of the Prairie Township recreation center.

The Prairie Township Trustees unanimously approved the hiring of a new executive director of the recreation center, James Gant, at the July 23 meeting.

“We ended up receiving 56 applicants and 25 of those applicants were from Ohio,” said Tracy Hatmaker, Prairie Township administrator. “The reason we selected James was because of his experience in program development. He knows how to start things from scratch with enthusiasm.”

Hatmaker also noted that Gant knows how to run recreation centers like a business, something the township was looking for.

A graduate of Ohio University, Gant received his bachelor of science in recreation studies in 1999 and his master of science in physical education in June 2000. Currently, Gant works for the Upper Arlington Parks and Recreation Department as a recreation superintendent.

“I heard about the position through the Ohio Parks and Recreation Association and thought I was a perfect fit for it,” Gant said. “I am really excited to get started and get people excited about recreation activities in Prairie Township.”

Gant said he hopes to make the center a center point of the community and hopes the center will bring people in the township together.

“I also want the center to provide great programming, while being fiscally responsible,” he said.

Before being selected for the position Gant went through a series of interviews.

“We selected the top three candidates for an in person interview and James really stood out,” Hatmaker said. “He presented himself well and is very articulate and has great ideas for the type of programming we can offer.”

Gant’s salary will be $78,500 a year. He will begin his position Aug. 27.

“We hope he makes it a fun place,” Hatmaker said. “We also hope he makes it a place that people will want to spend their time at.”

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