Lunch with a Leader: Ray McGury, Executive Director, Naperville Park District

Lunch with a Leader: Ray McGury, Executive Director, Naperville Park District

Thursday, June 17, 2021 (12:00 PM - 1:30 PM) (CDT)


This monthly series, limited seating, in-person event, highlights one local Community Leader/Influencer in a casual, friendly, sit-down atmosphere.  Held in a private room at Sullivan's Steakhouse, both NACC and community members are given the opportunity to interact and ask questions to those that Naperville owes its past and present to, and during this lunch, perhaps share ideas on its future as well. 

This month's event will be hosted by Ray McGury, Executive Director of the Naperville Park District. This is a face-to-face meeting opportunity and limited to 15 guests per event - so, be sure to register early! 

Pre-registration is required. Masks are required when not seated. 

Ray McGury

Executive Director

Naperville Park District

Ray McGury joined the Naperville Park District in September 2008 with more than 30 years of community leadership, education, and law enforcement experience. In his role as Executive Director, Ray oversees a budget of more than $41 million and is responsible for the overall management of a regular staff of 100+, and more than 1,000 seasonal employees. As the head of the District, he is additionally responsible for directing the operations and maintenance of 136 parks across 2,400+ acres, several unique facilities, and more than 7,500 recreational classes, teams, events, and performances offered annually for all ages. 

Prior to joining the Park District, Ray served as a leading law enforcement professional with the Naperville Police Department for more than 20 years, retiring at the rank of a police captain, and later at the Bolingbrook Police Department where he served as the Chief of Police from 2005-2008. The Naperville Park District has continued to make significant progress under Ray’s leadership, completing key facility projects like the District’s first nature center at Knoch Knolls Park, Fort Hill Activity Center, the 95th Street Community Plaza in partnership with the Naperville Public Library, and Wolf’s Crossing Community Park, a 33-acre outdoor facility. The latter two facilities, completed in 2020, also introduced the District’s first splash/spray parks to the community. 

Additionally, Ray oversaw a years-long project that involved seeking significant community input, the decommissioning of the 51-year-old Barn Recreation Center and the building of a new Central Maintenance Facility in its place. Demonstrating the District’s exceptional leadership in the industry, in 2011 Ray led the organization through an accreditation process offered by the National Recreation and Park Association to receive the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) distinction; the District also achieved reaccreditation in 2016 under Ray’s direction. 

A recipient of numerous awards and honors, Ray has been honored by the Illinois State Crime Commission as Police Chief of the Year and received the Medal of Honor for Bravery from the International Narcotics Officers’ Association. He also received the Naperville Jaycees Distinguished Service Award, the Kreml Leadership Award from Northwestern University, and many others. An involved community member, Ray has been active in the Illinois Special Olympics, St. Baldrick’s Cure for Pediatric Cancer, Naperville Ribfest, and volunteered as a coach for the Naperville and Bolingbrook park districts and YMCA. Additionally, he serves as a board member for Little Friends School for Autism, Naperville Developmental Partnership, Western DuPage Special Recreation Association, and the Naperville Cemetery Board. 

Ray holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice from St. Xavier University and a Masters of Public Administration from Northern Illinois University. He also is a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command, Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) Integrated Emergency Management, the Rocky Mountain Executive Management Program, and is a certified ALICE Active Shooter Survival instructor. 

Sullivan's Steakhouse
244 South Main Street
Naperville, IL 60540-5350 United States
Event Contact
Linda Whitaker
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Thursday, June 17, 2021 (12:00 PM - 1:30 PM) (CDT)
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