Fitness Directors play an important role at our Fitness Centers. In addition to supervision of personal training staff and fitness room volunteers, they oversee fitness room operations and programs. This includes everything from the maintenance of fitness equipment to ensuring that you receive high quality service on a daily basis.
Our Fitness Directors are available by appointment to give you an orientation to the fitness equipment. After you begin your exercise program, your Fitness Director will provide you with feedback, monitor your progress, and will stay in direct communication with you for continual support and encouragement. They truly make our RECenters a place for community interaction AND a great workout!
Megan Hare hails from Coatesville, PA and graduated from George Mason University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Exercise Science and Masters of Science in Health Psychology. Megan is AFAA Group Exercise, Reebok Cycle, TRX, Les Mills BodyPump, and Senior Fitness Certified. She is also a certified BioMechanics Corrective Exercise Specialist and certified CHEK Holistic Lifestyle Coach. In addition to being a Fitness Director, Megan is also an adjunct professor at George Mason University.
Megan's always been involved in sports since the age of 6. Her main love is softball! Megan chose to get into the health and fitness field because of her fascination with how the body moves. That eventually led her to her degrees and certifications.
Megan's philosophy comes through promotion and education. She loves to help people take steps through learning and living on how to live a healthier lifestyle!
To contact Megan, email: Megan.Hare@fairfaxcounty.gov
A Michigan native, Julie Beck graduated in 1997 from Grand Valley State University where she received a Bachelors of Science degree in Physical Education with an emphasis in Corporate Fitness. Julie has worked for private clubs, non-profit fitness centers, and corporate fitness facilities. Julie also lived near Chicago, IL and worked for eight years as the Fitness Coordinator of the Mt. Prospect Park District and the Race Director of the Strive for Five 5K Run.
In high school Julie was recruited to the track team(after an unfortunate season of volleyball!). After years of dedicated practice, Julie became captain of her cross country team and the track “Most Valuable Runner”, proving that with hard work and dedication even people with very little natural athletic ability can succeed in fitness!
After a long hiatus from running, Julie became a finisher of the Chicago Marathon in 2009. She shared her experience and taught a “Rookie Road Runners” class to prepare people who were new to running to finish their first 5K Run. Julie truly believes that it is never too late to start a fitness program and that there is something for everyone! Even small steps in the right direction will get you moving in the right direction!
To contact Julie, email: Julie.Beck@fairfaxcounty.gov
Morgan Buck graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.S. in exercise and sports science. He then moved to the Washington DC area to attend Marymount University, where he graduated with his M.S. in Health promotion and management.
Morgan began playing sports at an early age; however basketball became his true passion. It was through this zeal for sports that he began to become intrigued with how the body moves and responds to certain stressors and activities.
He strongly believes that in order to be truly healthy and well an individual must address all aspects of wellness: emotional, mental, physical, spiritual, and social. Fitness is something he believes is achievable for anyone who sets their mind to it! He is looking forward to serving the Lee District area with aspirations that everyone will be able to lead a happy and healthy lifestyle.
To contact Morgan, email: Morgan.Buck@fairfaxcounty.gov
Mary Malof has been a personal trainer with the Park Authority since December 2001. Prior to her current position, Mary worked for the Department of Recreation and Community Services as a facility attendant in the Employee Fitness Center. She's currently certified as a personal trainer and nutrition consultant through American Fitness Professionals and Associates (AFPA).
Mary believes in leading by example, "Physical fitness is the key ingredient in reaching your lifetime goals. Begin slowly, maintain focus and attitude and always remember to make it fun." She enjoys working with older adults and individuals new to "working out."
Sports and fitness have always been a dominant part of her life. Mary grew up playing team sports and went on to play NCAA softball in college. She stays active today by cycling, hiking, running or just keeping up with her three dogs.
To contact Mary, email: Mary.Malof@fairfaxcounty.gov
Jennifer Elgas graduated from Lynchburg College with a BA in Sports Management. Jennifer is an ACE Certified Trainer and a Reebok Cycle Spin Instructor.
She has always been involved in sports, playing baseball or softball from the time she was 4 years old. She was also a swimmer for ten years. When not directly involved in sports she coached both softball and swimming. Jennifer's goals are to complete a sprint triathlon by fall, 2006, and then to complete an Olympic length sprint by next year.
Her philosophy is that working out has to be fun for people to stay with it for life. If fitness is not fun then it's just a chore and nobody wants to do chores for life! "I love showing people they can do something they never thought they could do," says Jennifer. "I love to watch their reactions when they see results they've accomplished."
To contact Jennifer, email: Jennifer.Elgas@fairfaxcounty.gov
Lindsay Curry graduated from James Madison University with a B.S. in Kinesiology and a concentration in Sport and Recreation Management. She came to the Park Authority as an intern and started her career at Cub Run RECenter. She then served as the Fitness and Wellness Program Coordinator before making her move to Oak Marr RECenter where she was the Fitness Director. Lindsay now calls Providence RECenter "home" where she also holds the position of Fitness Director. She is a certified Personal Trainer through Aerobic and Fitness Association of America (AFAA) and also holds a Reebok Cycle certification.
Lindsay grew up playing sports; basketball, softball and volleyball. She was also a long time cheerleader who garnered both state and national titles. She attributes her love for sports and fitness to her parents. Her dad taught her how to weight train while her mom served as her personal cheerleader.
Her personal mantra, "Increase your quality of life with fitness! It's never too late to start a fitness routine."
To contact Lindsay, email: Lindsay.Curry@fairfaxcounty.gov
Laurie Stricklandis a native of Avon, Ohio. Growing up in the country and having acres of land to bike, ride horses and run worked well for her active personality. Laurie spent two years at Kent State University in Ohio and finished her degree in Developmental Psychology at George Mason University after raising two children.
Some of Laurie’s accomplishments include winning two Washington, D.C.
area body-building competitions, Ms. Novice Metropolis and Ms. D.C. and
placing eighth in my first duathalon (running and cycling).
Laurie is certified by the American Council on Exercise as a personal
trainer and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America as a group
exercise instructor. She also holds specialty certifications as a
Yogafit, Pilates and Reformer instructor, Cancer Exercise Specialist
and a Golf Conditioning Specialist.
I believe everyone can improve their heath and fitness level. My degree in Psychology is useful since many issues related to not exercising can be rooted in other problems. I teach by example and will continue to help as many people as I can. My goal is to help others live a more healthy and active lifestyle.
To contact Laurie, email: Laurie.Strickland@fairfaxcounty.gov
John Bartok is a graduate of the University of Rochester where he earned a B.S. in Environmental Science and graduate-level management certificates. He moved to Fairfax County where he worked for the Federal Government. His environmental efforts led him to a greater interest in human ecology and nutrition. In 1996, he completed the Marine Corps Marathon, his first, and later earned a Personal Trainer certification from bodybuilding-focused Parrillo Performance, along with completing a masters coaching program at Coach for Life.
John combined his education and his passion to support at-risk youth and helped found a local charity that provides mentoring and training to adolescents. With a Youth Fitness Instructor certification from the International Fitness Professionals Association (IFPA) and a BOSU Integrated Balance Training specialty certificate, John focuses much of his personal training on enhancing the fitness and wellness of youth at the RECenter.
As Spring Hills Fitness Director, John enjoys sharing his knowledge and sense of humor with the diverse community. "I love helping people strengthen and balance their body, mind, and spirit to create greater health, wellness, and a sense of fulfillment." John often refers to the brain as the strongest "muscle" in the body and reminds patrons that "whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right!"
To contact John, email: John.Bartok@fairfaxcounty.gov
EMPLOYEE FITNESS AND WELLNESS CENTER
Chuck Wright serves as the Fitness Director for the Employee Fitness and Wellness Center. Chuck believes that fitness is the key to longevity. A graduate of East Texas State University, he has a bachelor's degree in kinesiology with two minors in health education and recreation from North Texas State University.
His areas of specialty include fitness for the elderly, competitive bodybuilding, weight management, sports training and fitness programs for individuals with physical and mental disabilities.
To contact Chuck, email: Chuck.Wright@fairfaxcounty.gov
Elizabeth Ittner (Liz) graduated from George Mason University in 2004, with a B.S. in Health, Fitness, and Recreation Resources, concentration in Exercise Science and from Ithaca College in 2005, with an M.S. in Exercise and Sport Sciences, focus in Sport Psychology. She is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is a Continuing Education Provider for ACE (American Council on Exercise) and AFAA (American Fitness and Aerobics Association). Liz holds certifications as a Group Exercise Instructor, a Reebok Cycle Instructor, Prenatal Yoga Instructor, and Personal Trainer. She has also been a Level-II Coach with USRowing and a Club Coach with USA Weightlifting. Liz has worked as a Sports Performance Coach, Fitness Specialist, and Lecturer over the past ten years, and served as the Fitness Director at Audrey Moore RECenter from 2007-2009. She enjoys sports and fitness endeavors of all kinds, and has been involved everything from running to rowing (crew) to Olympic lifting.
As the Program Coordinator for the Fitness & Wellness Section, Liz manages the Take 12 Steps for Health program, as well as community-based classes, instructor trainings, outreach efforts, and supporting the fitness directors at each RECenter. Always trying to make a difference, Liz serves as the FCPA representative on the Northern Virginia Healthy Kids Coalition, as well as the LiveWell Advisory Council. As a new mom, Liz is always looking for opportunities to improve programming especially when it comes to children’s fitness and encouraging family wellness.
To contact Liz, email: Elizabeth.Ittner@fairfaxcounty.gov