Missouri Rock Island Trail hires first Executive Director

The Missouri Rock Island Trail, Inc. (MORIT) has hired Greg Harris of Rolla, an experienced fundraiser, as its first executive director.

The Gasconade County Republican wrote:

Missouri Rock Island Trail, Inc., (MORIT) board members hired Greg Harris of Rolla as MORIT’s first executive director at the June 1 board meeting in Stover, Mo. 

Board members discussed the possibility of hiring an executive director at the March meeting as Chrysa Niewald, MORIT presi- dent, said the work was becoming too much for the board president and volunteers.

After reviewing Harris’s application, the board believed he would make a good fit.

“The board unanimously approved the decision and feels it gives credibility to the board as we move forward,” Niewald said.

Harris is currently a member of the MORIT board of directors and has been keeping up on the details of the trail. His position is part- time and set to start July 1. Duties will include fund raising, building membership, and promoting interest and support.

“We are going to need to work with communities along the trail to stay ahead of it,” Harris said during a phone interview with The Republican. “Before we know it, the park will be in the works and we need to be talking to all the communities.”

The Rolla Daily News adds:

Harris spearheaded efforts that raised millions of dollars for Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla. During his 17-year career at the university, Harris also served as director of development, interim assistant vice chancellor and senior development officer.

Harris directed fundraising for United Way of the Ozarks and worked with blood services for the Springfield Region American Red Cross before joining the university.

Trails have been a component of Harris’ community service for more than two decades. He was co-founder and vice-chair of Springfield Ozarks Greenway and joined the Missouri Department of Natural Resources Trails Advisory board in 1992. He was the Springfield coordinator for the Katy Trail Coalition.

He has been active in the Rotary Club, Boy Scouts and organizations involved in church, parks and other community matters.

Greg is an avid cyclist, a long-time cycling and trails advocate, and MoBikeFed member.  He is a great choice to lead MORIT and take the Rock Island Trail to fruition. Best wishes to Greg and to MORIT as they move forward in an exciting new direction.

Find out more about MORIT--or become a member--on the Missouri Rock  Island Trail web site.   


Working towards a world-class bicycle and pedestrian network across Missouri and helping build a movement in support of bicycling, walking, and trails across Missouri are two of the primary goals in MoBikeFed's Vision for Bicycling and Walking in Missouri.

Your ongoing membership and generous financial support help turn our Vision into reality!

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