Council appoints member to commission
Ryan Handforth named 5th member of Downingtown Park and Recreation panel
DOWNINGTOWN >> Borough Council members Wednesday unanimously appointed Ryan Handforth as the fifth member to the Park and Recreation Commission.
Kevin Scalfaro, chairman of the Parks and Recreation Commission, said Handforth went through the interviewing process to apply for the position and has attended several meetings. Council has the final say on appointing members to the commission.
“We feel that he’s a good fit,” Scalfaro said.
Scalfaro said Handforth has experience with marketing and social media, as part of his career. Scalfaro noted that Handforth can help the commission to create social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word about news and events hosted by the commission.
Downingtown Borough Councilman Jeff Thomas said Handforth is “an excellent candidate.”
Council voted 5-0 to appoint Handforth, who was unable to attend council’s meeting.
Council President Anthony “Chip” Gazzerro said they appreciated the hard work by the commissioners. The Park and Recreation Commission members have launched new events such as a Kids Field Day last September.
Council unanimously established a Historic Commission in August 2014, and a separate Park and Recreation Commission, replacing a combined commission which disbanded six months prior to then. Council members said at that time that they disbanded the original commission known as the Historical and Parks Commission because they wanted separate commissions with different focuses. Several residents expressed concerns that it was a controversial move to disband the commission rather than divide it. Council noted it would be easier to start the commission over with a fresh start.
Council appointed members
to its two commissions, the Park and Recreation Commission and the Historic Commission, in February 2015 – a year after the majority of council voted to disband the single commission. Ashley Orr was appointed in July as the fourth member on the Park and Recreation Commission.
Ginny Pierce is the only member from the original commission that currently serves on the Historic Commission. There is one vacancy on that commission. Pierce had stepped down from the commission prior to it being disbanded.
Both commissions are allowed five voting members. As enacted by council in April 2015, the Historic Commission allows up to two non-borough residents as voting members. Councilman Phil Dague, who is the council liaison to the Historic Commission, said at the time of the approval by council that he did not want contributing volunteers who reside outside of the borough to lose interest in the organization because they could not vote.