Pioneer Member of Bernards Pool Commission, Don Wadsworth, is Honored After 30 Years [Updated]

Don Wadsworth, right, was honored on Feb. 14 by the Bernards Township Committee for 30 years of service on the township Pool Commission. Credits: By Linda Sadlouskos

BERNARDS TWP., NJ - Pleasant Valley Pool, a complex of pools and water play areas with a serene snack bar, is "the best pool in the area," a proud Donald Wadsworth said on Tuesday night - the same evening that the Bernards Township Committee honored Wadsworth for his more than 30 years of service on the township Pool Commission.

Wadsworth recently tendered his resignation from the Pool Commission. "During his tenure , [he] has given innumerable hours to our local government, its democratic process, and to the citizens of Bernards Township," says a resolution approved by the Township Committee on Feb. 14.

Wadsworth attended the presentation of the resolution, accompanied by some other commission members and Jennifer Gander, director of the township Parks & Recreation department.

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Wadsworth said he looks forward to seeing Pleasant Valley Pool remain the "best" complex around.

Township officials responded to Wadsworth's pride by thanking him for making the municipal pool complex so great. Pleasant Valley Pool is located within Pleasant Valley Park off Valley Road.

Wadsworth remained on the commission through December 2016, Gander said in an email on Friday. "Don will be missed - he was a wealth of knowledge and information and always a pleasure to have on the commission," Gander added in the email.

Wadsworth was first appointed to the Pool Commission in 1986. At that point, the resolution noted, the municipal pool complex was in its formative years with "an expanding and demanding membership."

The first operating season for the Pleasant Valley Pool was 1979, which initially opened with the main pool and a small wading pool, Gander said in the email.

The first year, Wadsworth served as the swim team parent liaison and chair of lawn care subcommittee.

Over the course of his time on the Pool Commission, Wadsworth had served as vice chair for nearly 10 years and, most recentl, as the finance committee chair for more than 15 years, according to the township resolution.

"Don has seen the facility grow exponentially during his tenure - the addition of feature pools; support buildings constructed and renovated and renovated again; slides and water play areas added; and many, many coats of plaster and paint," the resolution said.

In recent years, the pool has undergone a number of upgrades to refresh the facility, with improvements funded by fees from pool members.

The resolution added, "Don has kept the Pool Commission financially on track throughout, forecasting surplus funds, advising whether or not to take on large projects, and determining if fees can cover expenses. His input has helped to keep Pleasant Valley Pool [a ] stable operation." 

Wadsworth's expertise and historic knowledge of the pool complex "will be sorely missed and likely will not be matched," the resolution said.

"Don’s decades of service provided continuity and balance among others to ensure the operations remained top notch and the infrastructure up to date for future generations," according to the resolution.  

The resolution from the Township Committee recognized Wadsworth's years of service. "The Bernards Township Committee extends to Donald Wadsworth deep appreciation and sincere gratitude on behalf of all the residents and officials of Bernards Township," the resolution said.

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