Veteran Fitness Club Manager Is New Recreation Director

Town Manager Sarah Stanton has named the long-time general manager of the Cambridge Athletic Club as the town’s new director of recreation.

Josh Smith was confirmed by unanimous vote of the Select Board at its meeting Monday.

The vacancy results from the retirement of Amy Hamilton, which was effective at the end of May.

There were 19 applicants, according to Colleen Doyle, Assistant Town Manager For Human Resources And Administration.

According to an online professional profile, Smith has worked as general manager of the four Cambridge Athletic Clubs since the fall of 2004. Total membership exceeds 3,500.

In January 2001, according to the profile, Smith established CAC Basketball, and continues to serve as president. The program is described as “men’s, women’s, corporate, and co-ed recreational basketball leagues with 1,000-plus players, 150-plus teams per season, playing year-round.”

On Monday Stanton pointed out that the position of recreation director will now fall under the umbrella of Health and Human Services, which also includes the Health and Youth and Family Services Departments. Smith said he already has been communicating with Heidi Porter, department head, and recreation staff members.

Smith majored in exercise physiology as an undergraduate at Northeastern University, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in 2001. Later he earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Babson University.

“I have a lot of people to meet and a lot of programs to learn about,” Smith said, adding that it “makes a lot of sense” to work under the umbrella of Health and Human Services.

Asked by Shawn Hanegan about programming for children with disabilities, Smith acknowledged the importance of inclusive programming and said he will be working to connect with experts on the school and recreation levels.

Board member Edward Pierce, who served for five terms on the School Committee, cited the priority of smooth interaction between school and recreation activities on the allocation of field and gymnasium space. Smith said he already has started addressing this topic with Director of Athletics Keith Mangan, who was on the interview committee.

Also during the conversation with Smith, Select Board member Bopha Malone commented on the value of his business degree and Chair Emily Mitchell said she hopes Smith can help ignite the restoration of summer youth theatre.

Mike Rosenberg can be reached at mike@thebedfordcitizen.org, or 781-983-1763


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