The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County
7900 Renner Road
Shawnee Mission KS 66219
Access to quality parks
Web and Phone Contact
Telephone (913) 826-3424
Mission Statement
The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County exists to raise funds to support the National Award Winning Johnson County Park and Recreation District (JCPRD). The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County envisions supporting parks, arts, cultural and recreation programming that connects community through strategic philanthropic investments and revenue development. The foundation is committed to supporting and improving the quality of JCPRD assets for current and future generations to enjoy.
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Jill Geller
Board Chair Mr. Doug Allen
Board Chair Company Affiliation Nelson Art Museum
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 1977
Volunteer Opportunities
Do you have Volunteer Opportunities? Yes
Ways to donate, support, or volunteer
We have  leadership opportunities as a board member on The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County. 
We also have many one time events throughout the year that support the programs of Johnson County Park and Recreation..
We welcome donations to support  parks, trail development and programs that contribute to a greater quality of life for residents.
The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County 
Attn: Development Director
7900 Renner Rd
Shawnee Mission KS 66219 
or call us at 913 826 3448 to process your gift by credit card 
Financial Summary
Revenue Expense Area Graph

Comparing revenue to expenses shows how the organizations finances fluctuate over time.

Source: IRS Form 990

Net Gain/Loss:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.
Mission Statement The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County exists to raise funds to support the National Award Winning Johnson County Park and Recreation District (JCPRD). The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County envisions supporting parks, arts, cultural and recreation programming that connects community through strategic philanthropic investments and revenue development. The foundation is committed to supporting and improving the quality of JCPRD assets for current and future generations to enjoy.
Background Statement
The Park and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County was established in 1977 to support the district with funding to allow acquisition of land and fund growth that was not possible through tax funding. This foundation exists to support the mission and vision of the district and help make the legacy plan a reality for this region.

The District remains the only special park and recreation district in the state. The first District board was appointed in January 1955. The board explored available land, and in June 1956, voters approved bonds to purchase the first park properties. The first, 44-acre Antioch Park, was dedicated and opened in 1958. The second, Shawnee Mission Park, 1,250 acres, was dedicated in 1964. The District currently owns approximately 9,700 acres.

Johnson County Park and Recreation District (JCPRD) celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2015. Currently, JCPRD welcomes 2.8 million visitors, class and event attendees annually. We are in the middle of executing our legacy plan which includes dedication of 4 undeveloped parks, expanding nature based services, and growing programming and partnership through the addition of new facilities. We were National Recreation and Park Association Gold Medal Finalist in 2017 for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management, demonstrating excellence in long-range planning, resource management and innovative approaches to delivering superb park and recreation services with fiscally sound business practices. JCPRD is also accredited with the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA), a national agency that measures the overall quality of operation, management and service to the community.
Impact Statement
JCPRD's 4,000 programs/events serve 2.5M annual participations, manages over 9912 acres of parkland and trails. In 2017, JCPRD was named the Gold Medal Winner for excellence in Park and Recreation Management, making it the #1 Park and Recreation District in the country for populations over 400,000.
  1. Theatre in the Park is one of the outstanding programs that citizens enjoy with the largest outdoor community theatre in the country boasting over 41,000 visitors every summer for performances at Shawnee Mission Park. An indoor theatre program is underway with a new indoor stage now open at the Arts and Heritage Center.
  2. JCPRD is a critical part of the educational support system providing Out of School Time programs and Summer Camps for over 1800 children. Parents across Johnson County depend on JCPRD to provide academic enrichment for their children when they are at work. Sites include areas where children plant gardens and prepare their harvest.
  3. Assuming oversight and management of the Johnson County Museum, JCPRD secured $1.9M, of which 48% was through private donations, to construct a 12,500-square-foot exhibit in the Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center educating the community about the county's history.

Goals for 2018:
  1. Meadowbrook Park, a former golf course and country club is being transformed into a mixed-use development with an 80-acre park owned and operated by JCPRD, as the result of a collaborative effort involving a municipality, private developer, and JCPRD.
  2. JCPRD's desire to increase access to arts within our community and a unique collaboration with Johnson County Government resulted in the Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center. The building, owned by Johnson County Government, is operated and managed by JCPRD per a 10-year agreement. Featuring the museum, black box theater, arts and dance classrooms, and event space, the center fills a void in our community and anticipates 200,000 visitors in its first year of operation.
Needs Statement
  1. As is the case for many organizations, insufficient funding has long been JCPRD's most formidable challenge. Over the past two years, JCPRD has taken aggressive steps to meet that challenge head on, including the commission of an economic benefits study by The Trust for Public Land and development of a comprehensive strategic plan through the year 2030. In the process of completing the two projects, JCPRD not only quantified our value to the community, we also documented the needs and desires of our constituents. The study's findings resulted in greater awareness and support, and ultimately the Board of County Commissioners' approval of a .75 mill increase in our funding, equating to approximately $6.5 million in 2016. While this is a great boost to complete our plan, we still fall short to complete the Legacy Plan without private investment.

  2. Another challenge JCPRD faces is the significant population growth occurring in outlying areas and the need to spread our resources over a broader area. To better prepare for fulfilling our responsibility to provide parks and trails county-wide, a master plan was developed in 2016 for JCPRD's fifth regional park, consisting of approximately 2,000 acres in the southwest section of the county. JCPRD also established development strategies and accelerated timelines in our comprehensive strategic Legacy Plan for other high-growth area park properties that have been previously master planned but yet to be opened.
Service Categories
Parks and Playgrounds
Public & Societal Benefit NEC
Areas of Service
KS - Johnson County
CEO/Executive Director/Board Chair Statement
2017 was indeed a Gold Medal year for the Johnson County Park & Recreation District. After being recognized as a finalist in 2016, JCPRD was awarded the National Gold Medal for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management in 2017! We are very proud to bring this honor to Johnson County and recognize that your support is the foundation of our success.
2017 was filled with numerous accomplishments. To name a few:
  • In April, Ground was broken and construction began on JCPRD's long -awaited Big Bull Creek Park. Community support is evident with approximately 125 people attending the groundbreaking on a cold and rainy morning and 1,300 more watching the vent live on Facebook. The park will open in summer of 2018.
  • The Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center (form King Louie) opened in June 2017. Featuring the all-new Johnson County Museum, an indoor black box theater (allowing JCPRD's popular The Theatre in the Park to offer productions year-round), classrooms for a wide variety of arts and dance programs, and a gorgeous event space, the JCAHC welcomed approximately 80,000 visitors in its first seven months of operation.
  • Lexington Lake Park in De Soto opened to the public in July. The park saw more than 5,000 visitors in its opening weekend, and by the end of 2017, more than 65,000 had enjoyed this beautiful new park.
  • In October, we proudly cut the ribbon for the 3.4 mile Coffee Creek Trail, extending east from Heritige Park to Switzer Road. JCPRD's Streamway Trail System continues to increase in popularity, and additional miles will be added to this trail system in the future.
It's apparent that JCPRD made great progress on our Legacy Plan in 2017, through the opening of the new parks and trails as previously mentioned, but just as importantly, by taking care of our existing assets. Road and trail improvements, new playgrounds and shelters and additional developments ensure the continued safety and enjoyment of your beloved parks.
In 2017, JCPRD hosted more 7.6 million park visitations and more than 2.7 million program participations. It's obvious that you value JCPRD parks and programs, and your support inspires us to provide you with the best services possible.
We look forward to another successful year in 2018, and thank you for very much for your continued support and patronage.
-Jill Geller, Executive Director of JCPRD
Description The Universal Playground will be in 2 park locations (Shawnee Mission Park and Stillwell Community Park) including parent seating, restroom building and parking access that is suitable for children and families with special needs.
Program Budget 1.9 million
Category Recreation & Sports, General/Other Public Parks & Recreational Trails
Population Served Children and Youth (0 - 19 years), ,
Program is linked to organization's mssion Yes
Program Frequently Assessed Yes
Short-Term Success
We will provide a new destination for children and families to play, discover and learn. There will be equity in resources and opportunities for children of all abilities.
Long-Term Success
Long term success will provide equity and access to a Universal Playground in 2 park locations (Shawnee Mission Park and Stillwell Community Park) including a picnic shelter, restroom building and parking access that is suitable for children and families with special needs.
This will create an intersection and empathy among and between children of all abilities - creating opportunities to interact and play and create community for parents who often feel isolated in their experience.
Healthy outcomes will improve for children and families as their options for activity expands to these 2 sites.
Program Success Monitored By We will measure success through park attendance, attendance at this playground site, and through anecdotal surveys.
Examples of Program Success This will be the first of its kind therefore this is not yet possible to report.
The Theatre in the Park is the largest outdoor community theatre in the country.
Our outdoor amphitheatre is tucked into 10 beautiful acres in Shawnee Mission Park with a separate entrance at 7710 Renner Road. Located just north of I-435 Highway and 87th Street, our facility is easily accessible from anywhere in the Kansas City metropolitan area.
The casts from our shows are selected after an incredible weekend of auditions in the spring drawing hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of apsiring actors from our surrounding communities.

The Theatre in the Park is supported by the generosity of many area corporations and foundations that believe like we do that The Theatre in the Park enhances the quality of life in our communities. However, only about 15% - 20% of our operating budget is from tax support and these vital sponsors help finance our program with funds, materials, and/or service contributions.
Program Budget
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Theater
Population Served Families, ,
Program is linked to organization's mssion Yes
Program Frequently Assessed Yes
Short-Term Success Successful launch of the new black box theatre as a new venue for theater and performances.
Long-Term Success Increased attendance and fundraising to support the long term growth and quality of arts and performances that are accessible to citizens in Johnson County. 
Program Success Monitored By
  • Program attendance
  • Feedback from actors participating in the shows
  • Feedback from participants in our classes and workshops
Examples of Program Success Opening of  the new Black Box Theatre at the Arts and Heritage Center which allows us to offer performances at affordable rates all year around.  
Description JCPRD would like to remove the barriers for young girls and boys to participate in athletics through our extensive program offerings. Participation in extra curricular activities and sports has many long term benefits that impact health, social skills, teambuilding, perseverance, self esteem and many other vital life skills. As poverty increases in Johnson County, we want to help create opportunity for families and youth for whom team sports and youth programs is not possible today.  
Program Budget 50,000
Category Youth Development, General/Other Youth Development, General/Other
Population Served Poor,Economically Disadvantaged,Indigent, ,
Program is linked to organization's mssion Yes
Program Frequently Assessed Yes
Short-Term Success Increase fundraising activity towards this important need. 
Long-Term Success
  1. Form strategic partnerships with organizations across Johnson County that can help connect families in need to this opportunity. 
  2. Develop fundraising plan to help build a sustained giving plan to support the ongoing opportunity for team sports. 
  3. Develop a reasonable screening process that confirms needs but is not too cumbersome to prevent participation. 
Program Success Monitored By
  • Fund Development Director
  • Superintendent of Recreation  
Examples of Program Success
  • Increased number of kids involved in team sports and recreation programs
  • Anecdotal evidence of the impact/outcomes that child is experiencing as a result of this program
  1. Meadowbrook Park: A portion of the former 135-acre Meadowbrook Country Club is being converted into an 80-acre park, to address the shortage of park space in Northeast Johnson County. The design of the new park will take advantage of the open green space and mature trees that were part of the former golf course and will transform the property into a one-of-a-kind park. This will open early fall of 2018 with lots of funding and naming opportunities. 

  2. Big Bull Creek Park: This 1,980-acre future park site in southwest Johnson County will be JCPRD's fourth large regional park. The park's 22-acre Mildale Farm special event venue is on the northwest corner of the property and has been available for rentals, as well as spring and fall public events each year, since shortly after it was acquired in 2005. This will feature a camp site, trail system and playground space with an expected opening late summer 2018. There are funding project needs and naming opportunities.
Program Budget 7 million
Category Recreation & Sports, General/Other Leisure & Recreational Activities
Population Served Adults, Families, General/Unspecified
Program is linked to organization's mssion Yes
Program Frequently Assessed Yes
Short-Term Success Strong partnerships and relationships built with the community that translate into open dialogue, input into the process and open communication of any feedback or suggestions once the park open.   
Long-Term Success
  1. Strong utilization by citizens in Johnson County and across the region.  
  2. Program offerings that meet the needs of our patrons.
  3. Safe and welcoming environments that offer world class recreation experiences increasing access to park and recreation services. 
  4. Increased utilization  that translate into better health outcomes and wellness in our community.
Program Success Monitored By Park attendance, Program Attendance.  Patron feedback and usage of specific park site areas including bike stations, camp sites, shelter rentals and other events that will occur throughout these park properties. 
CEO Comments 2017 has been an outstanding year, winning the Gold Medal for excellent in Park and Recreation Management. We have also mad much progress on our Legacy Plan, taking care of our existing assets and opening new parks and facilities. Having been created by the Kansas Legislature in 1955, JCPRD has a long and rich history. We have opened Lexington Lake Park The Arts and Heritage Center, including the Black Box Theatre, an extension of Theatre in the Park, and the wonderful Johnson County Museum which now offers Kidscape, an interactive and educational space for children in our community. We invite you to partner with us as we continue to strive for excellence in the Park and recreation services we offer in Johnson County.
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Ms. Jill Geller
Term Start May 2014
Geller has been employed by the Johnson County Park & Recreation District for more than 30 years. Prior to being named the agency’s executive director in 2014, she served as the executive director of the Kansas City Corporate Challenge and as JCPRD’s superintendent of Recreation.
Jill is involved at the state level, serving on the Kansas Governor’s Council on Fitness and Board member and past President of Kansas Recreation and Park Association, and at the national level as the chair of the National Recreation and Park Association’s Certification Committee. At the local level Jill has been recently appointed to the Visit Shawnee Advisory Board and named by Johnson County Lifestyle as one of the Inspirational Women of Johnson County in 2017. In addition Jill received the Distinguished Fellow in 2018 from Kansas Recreation and Park Association.
Jill is a native of Hutchinson and received her bachelor’s degree in physical education from the University of Kansas and is a Certified Park and Recreation Executive.
Jill serves as a Board Member for the Foundation, as the board secretary, helping to provide strategic direction for the organization and the board.
Senior Staff
Title Development Director
Title Grant writer/Finance Analyst
Title Sponsorship Specialist
Paid Full-Time Staff 0
Paid Contractors 0
Volunteers 20
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Plans & Policies
Organization Has a Fundraising Plan Yes
Organization Has a Strategic Plan Yes
Management Succession Plan Yes
Organization Policy and Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy No
National Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Park and Recreation ManagementNational Recreation & Park Association2017
#1 Park in Kansas (naming Shawnee Mission Park with this honor)Money.com2018
Board Chair
Board Chair Mr. Doug Allen
Company Affiliation Nelson Art Museum
Term Jan 2017 to Dec 2019
Board Members
Mr. Doug Allen Nelson Atkins Museum
Ms. Jill Geller JCPRD
Dr. Bill Hoffman Retired Orthodontist
Mr. Bob Maher National Bank of Kansas City
Mr. George Schlagel Schlagel Long LLC
Mr. Jeff Stewart JCPRD
Ms. Nancy Wallerstein Community Advocate
Ms. Joan Barkley Wells Community Volunteer
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 8
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 3
Female 5
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 80%
Written Board Selection Criteria? Under Development
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 25%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 4
CEO Comments The board is undergoing more strategic recruiting efforts to expand the ability to further the mission of the Foundation.
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01, 2018
Fiscal Year End Dec 31, 2018
Projected Revenue $962,112
Projected Expenses $962,112
Foundation Comments
  • FY 2016, 2015, 2014: Financial data reported using the IRS Form 990.
  • Foundation/corporate revenue line item may include contributions from individuals.
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201620152014
Program Expense$250,086$82$56,380
Administration Expense$1,268$1,227$1,273
Fundraising Expense--$0$0
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.0929.670.54
Program Expense/Total Expenses99%6%98%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$2,349,453$2,548,803$2,529,502
Current Assets$1,257,002$455,657$794,873
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$14,075
Total Net Assets$2,349,453$2,548,803$2,515,427
Short-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities----56.47
Long-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Organization Comments Our challenges with our foundation is to create awareness that we exist and professionalize several aspects of the organization including a web presence, online giving, and assets to clearly convey our goals and the impact a donor can make in their community. We look forward to growing our planned giving efforts as well to provide a meaningful legacy for citizens in Johnson County.
Other Documents
Organization Name The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County
Address 7900 Renner Road
Shawnee Mission , KS 66219
Primary Phone (913) 826-3424
Contact Email
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Jill Geller
Board Chair Mr. Doug Allen
Board Chair Company Affiliation Nelson Art Museum
Year of Incorporation 1977