Fort Wayne Trails turns to Wawasee for new boss
After previously working in West Africa, New York, Cincinnati and Syracuse-Lake Wawasee, Meghan McClellan will join Fort Wayne Trails as its new executive director.
Anthony Juliano, Fort Wayne Trails board vice president and chairman of the communications committee, liked McClellan’s résumé.
“Megan is uniquely qualified for this position, as she has been working in a similar capacity in Wawasee. She knows how to build quality relationships, how to raise funds, how to lead, and most importantly, she is passionate about trails and trail development,” Juliano said.
McClellan said she sees trails as beneficial routes of transportation that help on environmental and economic levels.
“I just think trails have so much potential,” she said. “They’re open to everyone, they’re free, and you don’t need fancy equipment to use them : just a pair of shoes. Trails have so many opportunities that connect to so many different amenities.”
McClellan’s hiring comes a couple of months after previous executive director Kent Castleman announced his departure to join Fort Wayne’s Lasting Change Inc. McClellan was hired late last week and will begin her new position June 3.
Fort Wayne Trails Board President Marty Pastura described a competitive selection process with over 100 applicants. The board felt McClellan’s experience and passion for community set her apart.
Juliano said McClellan’s skills will strengthen the already strong Trails team.
“We have a phenomenal Trails staff, and she’s going to allow them to be even stronger,” he said. “I believe she will strengthen our team, as well as the entire community.”
McClellan said she is eager to move to Fort Wayne with her husband and daughter and is ready to get to work.
“I am very much looking forward to joining Fort Wayne Trails and getting to know the area’s trail routes,” she said. “Because the trail system is much larger than the Syracuse-Wawasee Park trails, it will be a challenge, but one that I am excited to tackle.”
In 2017, Fort Wayne Trails completed its 100th mile in Allen County and has continued to add new pathways.
Juliano is equally excited about the new executive director’s arrival.
“We’re really happy to have Megan on board and to get her established (at Fort Wayne Trails). ... I think she’ll help continue to increase country trail growth and the overall quality of life in northeast Indiana.”