116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS – Sven Leff is resigning after six years in the positions of Cedar Rapids recreation superintendent and parks and recreation director, according to a statement from the city on Thursday.
Leff is leaving to return to the west coast to pursue an unspecified opportunity in Truckee, Calif., according to the statement. His last day will be on July 7.
'The Human Resources Department is beginning a national search to select a new Department Director with the assistance of a recruitment firm,' Gail Loskill, a spokeswoman for parks and recreation said.
A new director will likely be selected in the fall, she said. In the meantime, Angie Charipar, assistant to the city manager, will serve in the role of director on an interim basis.
Leff left as recreation supervisor for the city of Reno, Nev, to take the job of Cedar Rapids recreation superintendent in April 2011. Two years later, he emerged from a field of 47 applicants from 18 states to fill the role of director in April 2013. He replaced Julie Sina, who retired as the city's parks and recreation director in March 2013.
The Parks and Recreation Department oversees 96 parks, four municipal golf courses, six pools, two sports complexes, the McGrath Amphitheatre Cedar Rapids, Ellis Boat Harbor, Ushers Ferry Historic Village, Prairie Park Fishery and more, and provides more than 1,000 recreational classes each year.
Leff has been involved in some major initiatives including developing a greenway plan for parks along the Cedar River, the Greene Square Park renovation, opening a new Northwest Recreation Center, and helping land the city's first all inclusive playground.
The position has also posed challenges, such as managing floodwaters that regularly batter city parklands, budget woes in the municipal golf courses, including a rebuffed plan to close money-losing Jones Golf Course, and maintaining the Ellis Boat Harbor.