See more photos of patrons & employees with the medal in the gold medal photo gallery.
See photos of Goldie, the finalist medal, touring Chicago in summer & fall of 2014.

Gold Medal Award

We won the gold!


On October 14, 2014 the Chicago Park District received the 2014 National Gold Medal Award
Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. This award is presented by the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). We're all very excited about this accomplishment. Read the related press release.

Learn more about this award and the Chicago Park District's application below.

The Gold Medal Award and Our Application

Administered by the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association, the Gold Medal Awards program honors communities in the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship, program development, professional development and agency recognition.

Applications are separated into seven classes, and the Chicago Park District was one of four finalists in the Class I Category, having a population of 400,001 or more residents. Cities we competed against included Mesa Arizona, Gwinnett County Georgia, and Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Agency.

A panel of five park and recreation professionals reviewed and judged all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both the local and national levels.

The Gold Medal Award winners were announced during the 2014 NRPA Congress in Charlotte, NC, October 14-16.

We are proud to share with our community the agency wide collaboration put forth in developing the Chicago Park District application. Efforts overlapped different departments, and the application is an excellent way to see how our programs and initiatives align with our Strategic Plan.

Below you will find our interactive application that highlighted many of the outstanding things happening at your local parks. You will also find supporting documents and links to the NRPA Gold Medal website.