John Dargle hired as new Milwaukee County Parks Director

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- After a national search that garnered 78 qualified candidates, Milwaukee County has a new Parks Director. His name is John Dargle.

Dargle previously served as the head of the Fairfax County Park Authority, which is an accredited and nationally-respected park system that serves more than one million residents of Fairfax County, Virginia. As Director of the Park Authority, Dargle was responsible for a $65 million operating budget and a $50 million capital budget.

Dargle replaces Sue Black who was known for her enthusiastic promotion of the parks and led the county to a Gold Medal Award.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele introduced Dargle to the media on Thursday, May 30th.

"We've got a guy who won also a national Gold Medal in a bigger system and who is just pumped to be here. Just has a rock solid record," said Abele.

In his 2013 budget, Abele increased the parks operating budget by more than $1.3 million and added nearly $15 million to capital projects.

"With Mr. Abele's contribution to the parks and dedication, with all our friends in parks, I think that's something I was very attracted to," said Dargle.

Dargle was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army from 1988 to 1995. He served in the Persian Gulf War and was a helicopter pilot. He and his wife Maureen have three children.

Dargle starts next month and will go through the County Board confirmation process.

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