PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Gene Cronin will become head of Presque Isle’s recreation and parks department, taking on a position long held by Chris Beaulieu, said a press release issued by the city of Presque Isle on Friday.
The city said it chose Cronin because of his interest in recreational activities, openness to new ideas, decisiveness and work on the rec department’s advisory board for many years.
The city had advertised the position over Facebook for about a month before the announcement. Beaulieu resigned last month for undisclosed reasons, saying only that he was pursuing “other opportunities.”
Though Cronin is a Presque Isle native, he has lived in many places outside of the Star City. After graduating from Presque Isle High School in 1998, he attended Alaska Pacific University in Anchorage. He also spent time in South Bend, Indiana, and Sturgis, Michigan, after graduating from college.
Cronin has been heavily involved in outdoor recreation since he returned to Presque Isle in 2012, serving as president of the Quoggy Jo Ski Club and Nordic Heritage Sport Club. He has also taught hiking, skiing and mountain biking.
His new position is not Cronin’s first foray into Presque City Hall — he ran for city council in 2016.
Cronin will become head of the parks and rec department amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which has restricted some of the department’s usual summer programming. It still plans on organizing several activities, including baseball, hiking and mountain biking.
Cronin said he wants to build up the rec department and plans on beginning new programs for both young people and seniors.
“I am excited to partner with other local facilities to spread programming throughout the community,” Cronin said.