“Gene has been a tireless supporter of Friends of Waller Park and parks in general for decades,” said Friends of Waller Park chairman George Johnston. “We are recognizing him for his service and dedication when we celebrate Arbor Day on April 27.”
Petersen was a founding member of Friends of Waller Park in 1982 and has done volunteer work for it every since. He served on its board from 1982 to 1986. His involvement has helped Friends of Waller Park make numerous improvements to Waller Park, including planting of more than 2,000 trees, installation of five new children’s play structures, a 27-hole disk golf course and improvement of the ponds at the front of the park.
Petersen has helped parks countywide through his service on the County of Santa Barbara Park Commission from 1986 to 2013.
He has been the treasurer for the Orcutt Aquacenter since it started in the early 1990s, and he served as treasurer of the Santa Maria Swim Club in the from the mid-1980s to mid-1990s and helped it attain nonprofit status. He is also a member of Allan Hancock College’s Business Advisory Committee, a position he has held since the mid-1990s.
Friends of Waller Park will plant a tree and place a plaque in Waller Park in Petersen’s honor in the area just west of the Park office at 300 W. Goodwin Road. Members of the public are invited to attend.
The ceremony will include presentation of the flag by a scout troop, songs by the Central Coast Chordsmen and refreshments.
For more information, visit the Friends of Waller Park Facebook page or email Jeanne@jeannesparks.com.