To recognize those who are making the outdoors better for all, Merrell — in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) — have created an award to be presented annually.
The Changing Nature of Work Award, the brand said in a statement today, will be given to either an individual or a team who has demonstrated “success in the changing nature of outdoor work that impacts the community, environment or those around them.” In the statement, Merrell explained the work could include persevering in nature disasters; promoting access to parks, shared-use paths and trails or open spaces; or instituting strategies to enhance personal safety in areas surrounding parks, playground or trails.
The nominee must be affiliated with a local park and recreation agency, and be an NRPA member.
“Merrell exists to share the simple power of the outdoors with everyone,” Merrell brand marketing manager Elizabeth Czachorski said in a statement. “This award, and our overall work with NRPA, helps to build awareness of disparities, advocate for more robust park and recreation systems and bolster the essential role of park and recreation professionals. Our award is another way we can recognize these professionals and the innovative work they are doing for their communities.”
The recipient will be sponsored with Merrell gear for one year and will receive $10,000 toward the advancement of a project or effort. Submissions will be accepted from Sept. 20 through Oct. 21, and the winner announced at the end of November.
“We are excited to collaborate with our partners at Merrell on the Changing Nature of Work Award to recognize a park and recreation professional who is doing remarkable work in their community,” NRPA president and CEO Kristine Stratton said in a statement. “This award program not only celebrates a community hero, but it also brings to life a local project so that more people can experience the power of parks and recreation.”
Aside from today’s Changing Nature of Work Award announcement, Merrell has been the subject of several headlines as of late. For instance, the outdoor brand announced in late-March that it has hired The North Face and Canada Goose veteran Sumi Scott to fill its chief merchant officer role. Also in March, Merrell revealed its “More Less” marketing effort, designed to redefine self-care. The campaign, Merrell said at the time, aims to show that “the greatest form of self-care has always been pretty simple: get outside and get moving.”