The Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management

Fran P. Mainella

Visiting Scholar, 16th Director of the National Park Service
Co-Chair of the US Play Coalition
Email: fmainel@clemson.edu
Tel: 864-656-2566
Location: 262A Lehotsky Hall

B.S. University of Connecticut (B.S. Cum Laude); Institute for Organization Management conducted by the United States Chamber of Commerce at the University of Delaware
M.S. Central Connecticut State College (Cum Laude)
Ph.D Central Connecticut State College, Honorary Doctor of Public Service

Specialty Area:
  • Natural and cultural resources
  • Partnerships and volunteerism
  • Ecotourism
  • Park and Recreation -- its meaning and importance to today's society including health and access
Additional Professional Responsibilities:
  • Co-Chair, US Play Coalition
  • Chair of the Pugsley Award Committee, Fellow for the American Academy of Park and Recreation Administrators
  • Treasurer and Member, Board of Directors Children and Nature Network
  • Chair, Public Lands Advisory Committee to the National Environmental Education Foundation
  • Former President, National Association of State Park Directors
  • Former President, National Recreation and Park Association
  • Member, “Will to Lead” Fundraising Committee for Clemson University
  • Member, National Recreation and Park Foundation
  • Member, Newsweek Magazine’s Environmental Advisory Board
  • Member, National Park Trust Board of Directors
Research Interests:

Research focuses on the Value of Play and reconnection to nature in the lives of children and adults. I also research and present on National and State Park issues such as invasive species, fire, visitation, maintenance, lighting, and operations.

Publications: (last 5 years)
  • Mainella, F. P., Agate, J. R. and Clark, B. S. (2011), Outdoor-based play and reconnection to nature: A neglected pathway to positive youth development. New Directions for Youth Development, 2011: 89–104. doi: 10.1002/yd.399
  • Mainella, F. P. (2011) Introduction. In National Geographic (Ed.), The 10 Best of Everything: National Parks. (p. 7). Washington, D.C.
  • Mainella, F. P. (2011) Introduction. In David R. Stoecklein (Ed.) Southern California Coastal Mountains to the Sea: A Celebration of Open Space on the Historic Irvine Ranch. (pp 12-13). Loves Park, IL: Stoecklein Publishing.
  • Regular publication in National Park and Recreation Magazine

Since becoming a Visiting Scholar at Clemson University in 2006, I have had the opportunity to speak at hundreds of conferences and events on the Power of Play and Reconnection to the Outdoors. Below is a listing of six recent engagements:

  • Ohio Park and Recreation Association Annual Conference, Sandusky, Ohio, February 2012
  • America’s Summit on National Parks, Washington, D.C. January 2012
  • ICAA Conference on Active Aging, Orlando, Florida, December 2011
  • NRPA Congress, Atlanta, Georgia, November 2011
  • Presentation to Shanghai Sports Administration (Government leadership for Parks) and Shanghai University for Sports students and leaders, Shanghai China, September 2011
  •  Children and Nature Network Grassroots Conference, San Diego, California, September 2011
Grants and Self-funded Research Projects:
  • Obtained funding for the “Good Lighting Practices” Fellowship
  • Fundraising for the US Play Coalition
  • Fundraising for “Will to Lead” Campaign for Clemson University
  • Assist students in finding funding and employment opportunities
Courses Taught:
  • The Value of National Parks, National Scholars Program through the Calhoun Honors College, with Dr. Bob Powell
  • Resource Management Policy with Dr. Brett Wright and Dr. Bob Becker
  • Nature Deficit Disorder with assistance from Richard Louv author of Last Child in the Woods
  • Special Problems in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management
  • Independent Study on Park and Recreation
  • Guest lecturer in: Facility Management, Historic Preservation, Tourism, EDGE program, and Introductory courses both in the Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Department and other Departments across campus

Utility Links


Assistive Options

Top of page

Assistive Options

Open the original version of this page.

Usablenet Assistive is a Usablenet product. Usablenet Assistive Main Page.