Jennifer Lainhart

Director of Aquatics and Track Center Complex at Mylan Park

Ms. Lainhart serves as the Director of Aquatics & Track and will be responsible for overseeing a high-functioning area including all aspects of the Aquatic and Track facility. Ms. Lainhart works closely with all of the staff and stakeholders to provide strategy, coordination, communication, and successful management of the new facility. She will also be responsible for supporting park users, tenants, lessees, and stakeholders through the development and execution of the Park’s program plan. Previously, Ms. Lainhart served as a Sports Program Specialist for the County of Arlington Parks and Recreation Department for 13 years. There, she directly supervised for 4 full-time managers, oversaw a team of 21 additional full-time employees, and over 150 part-time staff and provided leadership for the aquatics and gymnastics program operations in the County of Arlington, near Washington DC. She led strategic planning for the future of individual sports programs in Arlington County, which included designing and implementing sports, aquatics and gymnastics classes, and coordinated competitive teams at multiple locations. She was a very active participant in the division and department decision making including strategic planning, change management, and performance measurement. In addition, she served in a liaison role to the Arlington County board appointed citizen commission on sports and aquatics.
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B.S., Mathematics (George Mason University)

Certified Parks and Recreation Professional

Water Safety Instructor

Water Safety Instructor Trainer

Red Cross First Aid CPR Instructor

Red Cross Lifeguard Instructor

Aquatic Facility Operator Course

Certified Pool Operator

National Women’s History Month – Jennifer Lainhart

When CENTERS was hired to open and manage the Aquatic and Track Center at Mylan Park, we knew it was going to be different than our facilities that we currently operated. From the increased demand for membership revenue, non-traditional population (not located on a college campus), extensive business and financial focus, it was going to be a good challenge for our company. Jen was originally hired as the Assistant Director at the Aquatic and Track Center but transitioned to the into the Director role shortly after. Jen worked for local parks and recreation organizations for 20 years before coming to CENTERS. The aquatic knowledge she has is perfect for this operation.

Can you talk about how the CENTERS Culture with POI, our commitment to Better is Better, our Quest for X, and cross-site collaboration opportunities helps motivate you to continue learning and growing within the CENTERS organization?

It is amazing to be connected to so many colleagues that have a similar operation with similar challenges and successes. It allows us to collaborate and bounce ideas off each other.  I am proud to work in a service organization where everyone is passionate about their jobs and their students and employee development role.

What women inspire you, and which of CENTERS’ core values/attributes do they exemplify most?

I am often inspired by female athletes, such as Serena Williams, Mia Hamm Katie Ledecky, because there are so many places in the world where females don’t have the opportunity to grow up dream to compete at that level and I am proud to live in a place that creates through acceptance athletes of this caliber. The have accepted the risk and have taken a risk in choosing to be a professional athlete despite the disparity in reward for their commitment as compared to men’s athletics.

How do you feel having strong and respected female leaders in the company attracts women and minority talent to the company?

I feel accountable, that I should be an example for those looking to attain a role like this and I hope that I inspire people to desire a position like this and know that it is attainable to them.

How does working for CENTERS help you overcome common challenges and inefficiencies that campus recreation professionals that work outside the company live with?

CENTERS is a true network. I know that I can rely on my colleagues when I may not know the answer. I know that my decisions come from an informed collaborative and not made in a vacuum.

What are the most important competencies that younger female professionals need to acquire to become the next generation of leaders in the industry?

Confidence can sometimes be a barrier to leadership roles. You females desiring a leadership positions should arm themselves with education, experience, and the emotional intelligence they need to be a true leader of a diverse team.

We appreciate your hard work and dedication over the last year as the Director, Jen. We couldn’t have done it without you.