Kelly returns as Bainbridge Leisure Services director

Published 11:50 pm Friday, September 12, 2014

Former Bainbridge Leisure Services Director Al Kelly is returning to the position after taking a break to work in other departments for the city.

He will be replacing Jason Strickland, effective this month.

“I’m excited about working directly with the public and getting their input on how we’re doing and how we could do better and help move the program forward,” Kelly said, who had previously worked as the director for 25 years before Strickland took the position.

Bainbridge City Manager Chris Hobby said having Kelly come back onboard was common sense.

“As we thought about it, we realized we could’ve done a search, but we have a guy sitting right there with 25 years of experience running our programs,” Hobby said. “It puts him back in his natural element. Some things have obviously changed since he’s been over there, but at the core it’s the same stuff. This is something he knows how to do, and he is reenergized.”

Kelly said he would be working with children and grandchildren of some of the people he worked with during his 25-year tenure as director.

Also, he hasn’t worked with Leisure Services since the new fields at the Bill Reynolds Sports Complex have been constructed.

“I think I can handle the people well,” Kelly said. “When you deal with that many people, especially children, you have problems. But there’s not a problem we can’t work through. I’m excited and I’m ready to hit the ground running.”