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Shuffling in store for panel
Two leaving after lengthy tenures
Parks WEB 1
During Tuesdays parks and recreaction board meeting, members Charlotte Gardner and Cindy J. Mills, second and third from left, received plaques honoring their long service to the board. With them are members, from left, Karen Smith, Todd Holbrook and Dan Slott. - photo by Alyssa LaRenzie


Two longtime members of Forsyth County’s parks and recreation board have stepped down, though one of the women is poised to temporarily stay on a different capacity.

District 4 member Cindy J. Mills attended her last meeting Tuesday night after nearly 11 years on the board.

Charlotte Gardner, who chairs the panel, has resigned her District 3 appointment but likely will serve from District 4, which is where she has lived since being appointed eight years ago.

If commissioners approve the move, Gardner will fill out Mills’ term in District 4 until Commissioner Patrick Bell appoints someone else to take over the post for a full term.

Bell, who is up for re-election next year, said Wednesday that his plan is for Gardner to hold the post through the July primary.
At that point, he’ll re-evaluate the situation.

The parks panel does not meet again until January.

“I just think it’s the right time,” Mills said of her decision to step down.

“I still very much care about it and look for the success that it will have in the future. I’m very proud to have been a part of it.”

She never expected to stay on the board this long, Mills said, figuring an incoming commissioner would appoint someone new.

Instead, Mills received appointments from three different officials in her tenure, during which she saw many changes in the parks system.

“I was thinking about in the 11 years how much we have grown,” she said. “It has been phenomenal.”

Gardner had originally planned to step down at the end of December to allow Commissioner Todd Levent to appoint someone who lives in District 3.

“I live in District 4 and the whole time I’ve been representing District 3,” Gardner said. “This gives a representative from every district.”
Per the local parks board bylaws, members are required only to live in the county, not the particular district they represent.