Robin Hall has been a leader and advocate for parks, recreation, art, exercise and the environment for over 50-years in east central Illinois. So, it is only fitting that Urbana Park District honored its former executive director with a sculpture dedicated in his honor at Meadowbrook Park's Wandell Sculpture Garden.
Urbana Park District raised money to dedicate the sculpture Marker in Hall's honor. Through fundraising by Sagamore Publishing, Hall also received a glider rocker and a framed photo of Marker.
Over 80 people turned out to the surprise dedication ceremony. Several park district current and former employees and several of Hall's former University of Illinois colleagues turned out at Meadowbrook Park to surprise and honor their friend. Several leaders from park districts from across the state also made a special trip to Urbana to honor Hall.
Park District Executive Director Tim Bartlett and Sagamore Publishing Founder, Dr. Joseph J. Bannon welcomed Hall to the event and Michael Walker, Urbana Park District Board of Commissioners President, made remarks dedicating the sculpture to Hall.
Hall was very touched by the honor. He thanked all for coming and credited the people he worked with over the years to contributing to the park district's success.
Hall began work at Urbana Park District in 1968, and served in many positions, culminating in becoming Executive Director. During his tenure he helped shepherd expansion of area parks, promoted the arts and worked with Urbana School District to open Urbana Indoor Aquatic Center.
Hall retired from Urbana Park District in 2004, but still had much more to do. He worked closely with the Illinois Parks and Recreation Association and the Illinois Association of Park District to advocate for parks and recreation in the state.
He joined the University of Illinois right after leaving the park district to become Director of the Office of Recreation and Park Resources from 2004 to 2017. He served as a consultant to local parks and recreation providers and was the liaison to the Department of Recreation, Sport, and Tourism’s Alumni Advisory Board, serving until 2017. His love of art and community lead him to serve on the Urbana Arts Commission and the Public Art League.
We salute Robin Hall and thank him for all he has done over the years for parks, recreation and art in Urbana.
(Photos below of Hall, current Urbana Park District Executive Director Tim Bartlett, Sagamore Publishing Founder Joseph Bannon, Hall with sculptor Peter Fagan and the sculpture Marker)