INDIVIDUAL COMMUNITY LEADER
Making Reston’s Outdoors the ‘In’ Place for Everyone
Natural spaces are part of the essence of Reston, and they are an essential part Larry Butler’s work and personal life. Since 1982 and on a daily basis, he has worked to enhance the Reston community’s appreciation of its myriad and enviable natural resources—“part of the soul of Reston,” he says.
The Reston Association’s Senior Director of Parks, Recreation and Community Resources, Larry’s lifelong passion for the outdoors and physically active lifestyle has inspired his tireless volunteer work. He has been instrumental in the success of Reston Triathlon, a nationally recognized event, and the Reston Sprint Triathlon, which introduces beginning triathletes to the sport, and benefits the clients of Cornerstones. The “Kids Tri,” which Larry helped establish, offers children and youth an opportunity to build skills, discipline and confidence. The organizers’ commitment was that the event be open to every child who wanted to participate, and Larry helped raise funds and get donated bikes to make that a reality for 50 children each year.
Someone who makes connections across the community, Larry recently went the extra mile in the creation of two special public art projects in Reston. Working collaboratively with the Initiative for Public Art-Reston, he helped guide the construction of an interactive, mosaic-clad fountain at the renovated Dogwood Pool and the “Pyramid of Light” at Lake Thoreau, a temporary sculpture beautifying the lake’s spillway that involved a team of South Lakes High School students.
Known for going that extra distance, Larry says, “The payoff is getting people out and involved. People see their community in another way. Places and events define a community and bring people together.”
Remembering one of those gratifying “pay offs,” he readily recalls the look on the faces of the 50 scholarship children participating in a Kids Triathlon when they learned they could keep the new bikes they were using to train. “It was unbelievable!”