East Bay Regional Park District General Manager Pat O'Brien announced today that he will retire at the end of the year after 22 years in office.
Park district board president Doug Siden said the board, which received the news at its meeting today, is accepting 70-year-old O'Brien's retirement "with regret."
"Under his outstanding leadership over 22 years, Pat has made the East Bay Regional Park District the nation's premiere park agency," Siden said in a statement.
Siden said O'Brien's accomplishments included the passage of a $500 million bond measure to fund new open space and parkland development in the East Bay, and the acquisition of 38,000 acres of new parklands that expanded the park district by 33 percent.
He said the acquisition gave the park district more than 104,000 acres total, making it the largest local park and recreation agency in the
O'Brien has been honored with numerous awards and national recognitions, including being named a "Legend in the Field" by the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration last year.
"I am very appreciative of the board of directors, our staff and the citizens of the East Bay, and the various organizations which have partnered with us over time to accomplish acquisitions, development, restorations and incredible public programs," O'Brien said.
He said he is looking forward to staying actively involved in state and federal legislative issues, and he plans to travel with his wife Diana and spend more time with his three grandchildren.