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Dannie Stamper new
director of parks/rec

by Kim Fickett
Landmark reporter


Platte City has a new full time parks and recreation director, and he's a familiar face to those involved in local recreation programs.

Dannie Stamper of rural Platte City was offered the job at a meeting of the city's parks and recreation board Monday night. Dick Stephens, board president, said Stamper was busy Tuesday morning already performing chores for the department.

"I started him this morning," Stephens said Tuesday. "I'm trying to dump as much stuff on him as I can—it (the work load) is killing me."

The vote to hire Stamper was 5-2 in favor among park board members present at Monday's meeting. Voting against were Barton Bradley and Susan Higgins.

Stephens had left the meeting prior to the official vote.
"If I had been present the vote would have been 6-2 in favor," he said.

Stamper is a longtime volunteer for the Platte City Athletic Association, which oversees the local youth baseball program.

"His ability to run the PCAA was viewed as a plus—he's been there for the past eight years," Stephens remarked.

Stephens said he couldn't speak for the entire board, but in his opinion other factors weighing in Stamper's favor included his knowledge of city and county elected officials and his work ethic.

Stephens indicated Stamper's beginning salary will be in the range of $30,000.

"We'll probably do a 90-day review," the board president remarked.
There were 19 applications received for the position.

"Most applicants were kids right out of college with no experience. We've been there twice, in a situaiton where you train somebody and have them leave," Stephens said.

The most recent director, Justin Stuart, resigned to accept an offer of other employment.

One of the first priorities for Stamper will be to get the swimming pool ready for the upcoming season. Along those lines, Stamper this week will be attending an educational seminar in Kansas City on becoming a swimming pool operator.

He will also oversee upgrades set to be made to the swimming pool, start a restroom project at Riverview Park, finish the playground project at J.W. Lewis Park, and help complete the contract with the firm assisting in development of the park department's 5-10 year master plan.

In another matter, the park board has hired a recreational intern for the summer. Bruce Dunlap, a student at Northwest Missouri State University, will work a minimum of 480 hours over a time frame that begins next month and will run into the summer months.