Nine seek to lead Youngstown parks department | News, Sports, Jobs

YOUNGSTOWN – The city received nine resumes from applicants interested in the vacant position of director of parks and recreation.

Most applicants are from Mahoning County, although the city has received resumes from candidates from Otterbein, Indiana, and Pittsburgh.

Dawn Turnage, who has served as the city’s parks and recreation director since March 2018, resigned on Aug. 26 to become Columbus’ assistant director of recreation and parks.

Turnage’s annual salary was $60,143. It’s unclear what her successor will earn or when that person will be hired.

Mayor Jamael Tito Brown will select the next Director of Parks and Recreation.

Have applied:


Olas D’Ales-io of Can-field, the city’s director of water quality compliance who has worked for the water board since 2012.

Matthew J. Senvisky of Youngstown, Sourcing Manager for Youngstown Metropolitan Housing Authority since August 2021 and former Senior Strategic Sourcing Specialist for PNC Bank.

Christopher L. Colon, address not given, Northeast Ohio Regional Director for the Ohio Environmental Council and OEC Action Fund since 2021, and Executive Director and co-founder of Thrive Mahoning Valley since 2018, which supports relocations and returnees to the region.

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Jamhal M. Simon of Austintown, a Pennsylvania State Trooper since 2014 and a Staff Sergeant in the Air Force since 2009.

Clemate J. Franklin of Youngstown, Health and Wellness Coordinator/Supervisor at the YMCA of Youngstown since January 2012 and Dispatcher/Supervisor of North Star Storage and Warehouse since November 2021.

Lukas Benjamin Darling of Otterbein, Indiana, the deputy city manager of that community. He formerly lived in Youngstown while attending Youngstown State University.

Mary Beth Birks of Pittsburgh, who has 15 years of parks and recreation experience in Pennsylvania. She has served as a volleyball umpire for the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association since 2003. From 2016 to 2022 she was the volleyball umpire and kids club coordinator for Cranberry Township. She is past Parks and Recreation Director for Collier Township in 2021 and for Ohio Township from 2006 to 2014. Both townships are in Allegheny County.

Boardman’s John William Gore, shift supervisor since June 2021 for Youth Intensive Services in Youngstown.

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Timothy Gabrelcik of Beloit, risk manager/contract compliance officer with the Mahoning County Board of Developmental Disabilities and Mayor of Beloit from 2005 to 2012.


Brown is also seeking a director for the Human Relations Commission, a position that has been vacant for a year.

The position develops, implements and participates in all activities of the Human Relations, Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity program.

No salary is listed, but the job was previously paid $50,000 per year when it was a contract position. Brown is making the position a full-time job with benefits.

Six candidates applied for this position.

They are:

Sandra Fulton Britt from Youngstown who has worked for the town for the past 28 years in Police, Magistrates Court and since November 2021 as a Customer Service Representative at the Water Board. She was a police officer and court clerk.

Regina Lynette Jones of Youngstown, who is not employed.

Timisha Colyar of Youngstown, City Commercial Building Manager as of November 2020.

Brian K. Clinkscale of San Leandro, California, Supervisor of the Alameda County Workforce and Benefits Administration since October 2013. He attended YSU in 1990 and 1991.

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l Brittney McKinney of Youngstown, the town’s Emergency Communications Technician as of March 2016.

l Boardman’s Anne Sopher, Spanish teacher at Boardman High School since June 2021.

Brown said of both positions, “We started interviewing. I hope to hire in the near future.”


Brown’s final hiring process was slow, and the person hired was not in the first two waves of applicants for the job.

Brown hired Melanie Clarke-Pennella in May as a coordinator for downtown events and citywide special projects.

The city had conducted an initial search in February 2020 that attracted 33 applicants, but the COVID-19 pandemic hit, resulting in the cancellation of numerous events and postponing the selection process.

Brown had another search in September 2021 with 10 applicants. Clarke-Pennella applied in January, as did others after the September 2021 deadline.

The job pays $44,000 annually.

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