Palm Beach County Parks And Recreation Under New Management
Jennifer Cirillo Named Director, Paul Connell New Deputy Director
PALM BEACH COUNTY – Boca Post (BocaPost.com) — The Palm Beach County Parks And Recreation Department has announced new leadership succession, naming Jennifer Cirillo as the new director of the department.
The PBC Parks Department tells Boca Post that Jennifer has served Palm Beach County for more than 18 years, the most recent 12 as Assistant Department Director for PBC Parks. In that capacity, Jennifer has successfully coordinated the department’s efforts related to strategic and succession planning, open space and master planning, accreditation preparation, and operational best practices, and led the efforts for diversity, equity, and inclusion assessment that laid the foundation for years to come.
She is passionate about community building, environmental equity, and service through leadership— ideals she has promoted at the state and national levels. Jennifer was instrumental in the process that led to the department becoming back-to-back finalists in 2017 and 2018 for the National Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management and for bringing home the award in 2018. Since then, she has served on the National Gold Medal Award Committee, reviewing applicants from top agencies across the country.
Jennifer holds a master’s degree with a specialization in Sports Administration from Lynn University and she received her B.S. in International Business from Florida Atlantic University. She has been a Certified Park and Recreation Professional (CPRP) since 2010 and a Certified Park and Recreation Executive since 2020. Recently, she was awarded the Florida Recreation and Park Association Achievement Award for her service to the Association and the parks, recreation, and leisure services profession.
Paul Connell, former PBC Parks Director of Special Facilities, assumes his responsibilities as Deputy Director. Paul has worked for the department since 1991, successfully leading multiple diverse work areas and operating a variety of cultural and recreational services, including five golf facilities, the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center, three amphitheaters, concessions, and special events, providing economic value, health, environmental and social benefits to the community.
Paul holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Management, is certified as CPRP, is a board member of the National Association of County Parks and Recreation Organizations, and volunteers with his family to give back in meaningful ways to our community.
This succession comes after former Director Eric Call’s retirement on September 30, following 39 years of service.