Ernie Shaw, a longtime supervisor in the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department, has been tapped to serve as its interim director.
Shaw has been with the department for 31 years. He currently is superintendent of recreation operations, meaning he oversees all recreation programs, recreation centers and the city's swimming pools.
"I just want to keep things running smoothly like they have in the past," Shaw said. "The staff does a great job. I just want to keep everything organized."
Shaw is serving as interim director while the city seeks a new director to replace Fred DeVictor, who retired from the job after 37 years with the department. DeVictor's last day with the city was Friday.
Shaw said he was uncertain how long he would be asked to serve in the interim capacity. He said the city was advertising for the job through mid-April. He said it could be early summer before a new director is hired.
City Manager David Corliss - who will hire the next director - was out of the office Friday and unavailable for comment.
Shaw said he was not certain that he would be a candidate for the director position. He said he is interested in the job, but he lives just outside the city limits. City policy requires department heads to live within the city limits. Shaw said he was uncertain whether he wanted to move.
In other park news, the city has announced DeVictor Park is the name for a future greenbelt park near Langston Hughes School in west Lawrence. DeVictor had served in the Parks and Recreation Department for 37 years.
"Everything that everybody has done has just been sort of overwhelming," DeVictor said. "I was real humbled by that."