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Thomas Jefferson Park

The Daily Plant : Wednesday, January 9, 2002


Linda (Hickory) Dockeray is the Bronx’s Employee of the Month for January. Hickory graduated from City College and joined Parks on September 30, 1967 as a Recreation Director in Manhattan. She later served as Chief of Staff in Manhattan and as a PRM, before being promoted in 1991 to Administrator for two of the three largest parks in New York City: Pelham Bay, 2,766 acres; and Van Cortlandt, 1,146 acres. Hickory has helped develop non-profit partners for both parks and has overseen a number of capital renovations. These include the transition of Kingsbridge Green in Van Cortlandt from a forbidding concrete expanse to an island of green lawns. She has also completed, with in-house forces and through capital, the restoration of the bridle trails in Pelham Bay. An experienced and accomplished career Parkie, Hickory has devoted her professional life to providing first class city services and developing our Emerald Empire. She was nominated by Zorro.

Martin G. (Eagle Scout) Maher is Brooklyn’s Employee of the Month for January. Eagle Scout graduated from St. John’s University and joined Parks on August 12, 1985 as an Urban Park Ranger. For many years, Eagle Scout served in M&O until November of 1998 when he was promoted to his current position as Brooklyn Chief of Staff. Mirror has been heavily involved with many successful recent initiatives including the opening of Keyspan Stadium in Coney Island, and improvements to the Brooklyn Promenade. Eagle Scout also works extensively with non-profit partners, such as the Prospect Park Alliance, as well as elected officials, constituents, and neighborhood associations, to advance Parks causes and support our initiatives. A career Parkie with diverse experience and unquestioned commitment to Brooklyn, Eagle Scout was nominated by Mirror.

Katherine O. (Chama) Clark is Citywide Services’ Employee of the Month for January. Chama graduated from Clark University and joined Parks on June 29, 1999 as the first full time Parks Librarian. Chama has played a critical role in two innovative Parks projects: the creation of a public library in the Arsenal, and the successful posting of 2001 historic signs throughout the Parks system. In 1999, Chama helped organize and stock our new library, which was dedicated by Eagle. She and her impressive group of interns then took on the exhaustive and ambitious task of drafting the history of thousands of Parks sites. No stone was left unturned as Chama and her scribes made history - sign by sign. This unique and lasting contribution to New York life saw its culmination with the dedication of the 2001st historic sign on December 26 at Maine Monument in Columbus Circle. Charismatic, fun, and dedicated, Chama was nominated by BC.

Julia B. (Ghostrider) Schaffer is Management’s Employee of the Month for January. Ghostrider graduated from Brown University in 1999. For a year, she worked in theater in Germany before joining Parks on October 10, 2000. Ghostrider works in Public Information where she prepares and edits The Daily Plant - the only daily newsletter produced by a City agency. Ghostrider also prepares countless speeches, event programs, and letters relating to all aspects of the Emerald Empire As impressively, Ghostrider recently completed writing Parks’ 2000-2001 Biennial Report. Comprehensive and beautifully crafted, this report summarizes the myriad accomplishments of Parks & Recreation and is a lasting contribution to Parks history. A terrific writer and enthusiastic promoter of Parks, Ghostrider was nominated by Doe.

Laura E. (Lollipop) Gaul is Manhattan’s Employee of the Month for January. Lollipop graduated from Williams College in 1999 and joined Parks on February 3, 2000. Lollipop began as Management Analyst in Operations where she helped expand our recycling and vehicle acquisition programs and coordinated employee recognition. In January of 2001 Lollipop moved cross-park to Arsenal West to become A-Train’s Chief of Staff. She has quickly learned the ropes, dealing extensively with Parks staff, elected officials, and the public; and coordinating key projects. She spearheaded the Junior League’s successful spring clean-up at Thomas Jefferson Park. Lollipop also played a critical role in gaining approval for placing the Nobel Monument in Theodore Roosevelt Park. Focused and hardworking, Lollipop was nominated by A-Train.

Robert J. (Prayer Man) Knappenberger is Queens’ Employee of the Month for January. Robert joined Parks on July 17, 1992 and is a plumber working at Queens shops. As such, Robert repairs water fountains and comfort stations, and assists with the seasonal turn-on and turn-off of water systems. Robert handles all of Queens’ most difficult water problems, including underground pipe jobs, snake work, and building failures. He is a skilled and flexible tradesman, who works independently yet also helps train other staff. For his many years of professionalism and service to Queens, Robert was nominated by Ricardo.

Julia M. (Sprout) McCarthy is the Commissioner’s Employee of the Month for January. Sprout graduated from Yale in 1999. After studying architecture in Italy for a year, Sprout joined Parks on August 22, 2000 as an Assistant to Northside where she is the liaison to Capital Projects. Sprout is working to increase accountability and performance at Capital. She attends design reviews, performs site visits, and tracks capital projects from blueprint to groundbreaking to ribbon cutting. She is improving coordination of construction projects through better tracking of site visit reports. Sprout also represents and advances Capital issues at the Chiefs meeting and during ParkStat Plus+. Involved in all areas at Capital, Sprout has played a key role in monitoring high profile projects and making personnel changes. Smart and serious, Sprout was nominated by Northside and Red Rock.

Learn more about the Parks Employee Awards Program.

Prepared by Keith T. (Kermit) Kerman and Sarah (Cria) Coleman.


(Wednesday, January 18, 1989)

Mallard and Canard in the Parks

Where do ducks go when ponds freeze in the winter? Commissioner Stern asked third-graders from the Lycee Francais last Friday at a "Duck Day II" celebration at the Chess and Checkers House in Central Park.

"Duck Day II" marked the beginning of Parks’ "Beast of the Month" series in which different creatures inhabiting the city’s park system will be celebrated and studied through workshops, special events and nature walks. "Duck Day II" was organized by Special Events Director Pnina Michelson and Deputy Director Christopher Wangro.


Life can only understood backwards;
but it must be lived forwards.

Sören Kierkegaard

Directions to Thomas Jefferson Park

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Recreation CentersThomas Jefferson Recreation Center

We are experiencing a temporary loss of regular phone service. Please use 646.983.0655 or 646.300.2956 to contact the center. We apologize for the inconvenience.

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