Authentic partnerships. Meaningful outcomes.

Why Create the CTN?

We believe that parks and recreation agencies are uniquely positioned to positively impact our communities.

Each component of our name represents a core principle behind the reason for our existence:

Collaborative:  It's no secret that we can solve more issues and go further when we work together!

Training:  We promote the life-long learning and training of parks and recreation professionals - from the grounds and maintenance staff, to recreation programmers, to administrators and managers. We all deserve to grow and learn through professional training.

Network:  When we work and learn together, we become a part of something bigger and the benefits last well beyond a single project or program. The ongoing network of people who work with the CTN will continually be nurturing a community of practice.

boy holding sea shells

We Value...

Integrity:  respectful, honest communication and conduct

Authenticity:  a reliable work ethic paired with transparency

Wholeheartedness:  a mutual respect and gratitude for the hard work that impacts our communities

A note from the owner

Sally Pelto-Wheeler, CTN OwnerI have long been a believer of the positive impacts of nature and the outdoors on human health. I grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, along the shores of Lake Superior. I spent much of my collegiate studies and professional career understanding the positive impacts nature and outdoor recreation has on human health and the development of communities. The more exposure humans have to nature, the more we benefit from reduced anxiety, enhanced creativity, and overall well-being. Park and recreation agencies serve all people ‒ every age, every ethnicity, every social class. I believe deeply in the passion and potential of this group of professionals.

The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. ~ Mark Twain

I have been a relationship builder and networker my whole life - a connector and advocate of people and ideas. My professional career led me through different roles, so I can appreciate the work completed at all levels of an agency. While employed at the Eppley Institute for Parks and Public Lands, I successfully managed 20+ training and planning projects over 5 years, representing nearly 1 million dollars in grant funding. My most impactful project began in 2016, when I became the Program Coordinator for the national Playground Maintenance Technician (PMT) training. After I assumed leadership of the program, it grew from 100+ participants per year to nearly 800 participants per year. The rapid expansion of the program was due to my efforts at rebranding, increasing digital promotions, and building new client relationships with 100+ agencies nationwide. My passion for high quality training and engagement continues with the development of the Collaborative Training Network.

Sally Pelto-Wheeler, IPRA 2018 Conference Presenter

Professional Experience

  • training design and implementation
  • national training program development and management
  • relationship development and nurturing a client base
  • program marketing and promotion
  • conference planning

 

  • public speaking and keynote presentations
  • agency strategic and master planning
  • efficiency planning
  • policy development
  • quality assurance for learning management systems

kids playing at karst farm splash pad, bloomington, in

skate park, parker, co

kids playing on playground, bloomington, in

Sally's Inspiration

“It is only when diverse perspectives are included, respected, and valued that we can start to get a full picture of the world, who we serve, what they need, and how to successfully meet people where they are.”

Brene Brown

“Collaboration is the essence of life. The wind, bees and flowers work together, to spread the pollen.”

Amit Ray

"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude."

Maya Angelou