Maplewood has hired a new recreation director.
Keith Knudsen will be the new Director of Recreation and Cultural Affairs, with a start date of Jan. 30. His annual salary will be $83,500.
Knudsen, who lives in Wharton, NJ, has been working as the Recreation Director with the Township of West Milford for four years, and was an Assistant Director with the Township of Mt. Olive for seven years before that. Knudsen earned a Diploma in Computer Technical Support from The Chubb Institute in Parsippany, NJ.
In his application letter to the Township, Knudsen stated, "I am an innovative leader who knows how to run a successful department while dealing with the real burdens of today's tough economy. I strive for excellence from every individual I manage, and build relationships with the residents that I serve."
Township Committeeman Jerry Ryan stated that the Township received applications from a number of strong candidates and that the decision was not easy. "I felt that Mr. Knudsen would bring a lot of energy and fresh ideas to the position," said Ryan. "I look forward to having him on board."
Knudsen has already given notice in West Milford. He is expected to clear his background check by Thursday.
Ryan confirmed that Maplewood had been looking to South Orange for a proposal to provide recreation services to Maplewood, but that the parties were unable to formulate an agreement. Therefore, Maplewood needed to move forward on hiring a new recreation director to replace who was not reappointed after the end of 2011.