Ann Money

How We Created a Park for Everyone

Tulsa’s new riverfront park, Gathering Place, was voted USA Today’s Best New Attraction of 2019 and was featured as one of the world’s twelve best playgrounds by National Geographic. The park’s tagline, “A Park for Everyone,” begs the question – why wouldn’t a park be for everyone? Are parks elitist? The park is surrounded by a mostly affluent community, and without strategic and committed outreach and inclusion efforts, it may well have served only that community. Rodrigo Rojas, Director of Community Relations for the Gathering Place, discusses Gathering Place initiatives and how they can be used by other organizations to create diverse and inclusive environments.

Rodrigo Rojas is the Director of Community Relations at Gathering Place, where he provides leadership and coordination for Gathering Place in all community-based strategies, communications, and outreach efforts. Prior to Gathering Place, Rodrigo served as Director of Development and Communications at Teach For America and Director of Operations at La Semana Del Sur, Oklahoma’s Spanish-English Newspaper. Rodrigo is also the founder of Festival Americas, a free multicultural festival that celebrates the rich and diverse culture of Tulsa’s Hispanic community and inspires the next generation of leaders through college scholarships. Born in Argentina and raised in Tulsa, Rodrigo has a passion for public service, improving access to opportunities in all communities, and celebrating diverse cultures. Rodrigo earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas in Marketing Management. gatheringplace.org