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Budig Leaves Cincinnati Park Board

The Cincinnati Park Board will have new leadership next year.

President Otto Budig announced during a board meeting Thursday morning he will not seek another term.  His appointment had expired in 2015.

Mayor John Cranley is praising Budig's service.

"Under his leadership, the Parks Department has built the greatest riverfront park in the country and led the revitalization of Over-the-Rhine with a transformed Washington park," Cranley said in a prepared statement. "A man of unparalleled generosity and commitment to Cincinnati's art institutions, he has spent the bulk of his career building a better Cincinnati than he grew up in. Leaving the world better than we found it is the mark of a worthy life.”

Cranley will name a replacement in the coming weeks.  

Previously the mayor had delayed re-appointing Budig to the Park Board pending  a fiscal review of the system.  

Meanwhile, board vice president Merri Gaither Smith also announced Thursday she will not seek an additional term.  Her current term expires next month.

In July, the city manager released that report which called for more transparency, accountability and better accounting procedures between the Cincinnati parks department, the park board and the separate foundation.  An Indianapolis-based accounting firm worked eight-months completing its review.

Otto Budig is also a member of the Cincinnati Public Radio board.


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