Bonnet Springs Park Welcomes Incoming CEO
New life is blooming at Lakeland’s ambitious Park project as the Bonnet Springs Park Board of Directors announced the appointment of Josh Henderson as incoming Chief Executive Officer. Bonnet Springs Park Board Chairman Barney Barnett said “We are happy to have Josh join us as CEO. Josh and Bill Tinsley will work in collaboration with our outstanding team as we move forward in building this great Park.”
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I wish to thank Bill Tinsley for his leadership during this transition. He has and will continue to move Bonnet Springs Park forward,” added Barnett. “I also want to thank our search committee for conducting a thorough process that was comprehensive in its diligence and reach. The committee focused on top industry talent, and in Josh, we are confident that we have identified an experienced leader to move forward.”
Josh imbues a breadth of experiences from his catalog of natural and aquatic recreation facilities, including Six Flags-Whitewater in Atlanta and the beloved Silver Springs in Ocala. Josh returns to the sunshine state after the tremendous success opening Gathering Place, a 66-acre riverfront park in Tulsa, Oklahoma which welcomed over 3 million guests in its opening year. “The entire BSP team is thrilled to find someone with Josh’s leadership skills. His broad experience and team building skills will ensure the success of this world class park Josh fell in love with.” said Bonnet Springs Park, CEO Bill Tinsley. Great cities deserve great parks, and with his passion for providing world-class recreational experiences, Josh will lead the vision for Bonnet Springs Park, and help cultivate the great Park Central Florida deserves.
Josh has had an exciting career in recreation, tourism, and hospitality that has spanned seven states over the past 20 years. He started his career as a lifeguard at a small municipal parks and recreation department. He was eventually promoted to the facility manager position and stayed until completing his degree in Business Administration from The University of Arkansas. He then moved into the private waterpark industry working his way into higher-level management positions by demonstrating his leadership skills, his ability to train and mentor, and his dedication to excellence. Most recently Josh served as the Vice President of Revenue at Gathering Place where he led efforts to focus on in-park revenue generation to offset the use of the organization’s endowment funds. Incoming CEO Josh Henderson shared, “I am honored to join the Bonnet Springs Park team. I look forward to working with community leaders and volunteers to build Bonnet Springs Park into a point of pride for all who live in Lakeland and Central Florida. My family is excited to return to Florida and ready to become part of the community and make an impact. We are very happy to call Lakeland our new home.”
Bonnet Springs Park looks forward to welcoming Josh and his wife, Meredith, with their two sons, Kyle (9) and Caleb (7) to Lakeland, Florida in August as they embark on a new journey and relocate from Tulsa, Oklahoma. When Josh is not working, he has several hobbies and spends as much time with his family as possible. Josh is an avid car enthusiast, enjoys coaching soccer and football for his boys, visiting the Orlando theme parks, and going to the beach. Josh’s goal is to continue providing world-class recreational experiences in Central Florida while leading the charge to the Grand Opening at Bonnet Springs Park in 2021.
About Bonnet Springs Park
Bonnet Springs Park is a blended urban/natural 168-acre park centrally located in Lakeland, Florida. Bonnet Springs Park is designed to create spaces to escape, engage, and explore while experiencing and learning about the extraordinary history of Central Florida. The Park is slated for completion in 2021. Bonnet Springs Park is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization with a mission to enrich the community through nature, culture, recreation, and education. The Park serves to unify Central Florida’s diverse population, offering public spaces that serve the needs of many by providing engaging and unique opportunities in education and recreation to residents and visitors. The vision of Bonnet Springs Park is to be a place within walking distance to our city’s urban core where art, recreation, fun, and tranquility intersect by design.
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Heide Evans Waldron
Bonnet Springs Park