Continuing Education Outreach Trainers

Certified and Master Trainers

PlayCore’s Center for Professional Development's certified and master trainers assist communities in advancing the quality of play and recreation spaces through sharing research, best practices, and educational programs.

Meet the trainers.

Dr. Joe Frost Free, spontaneous play and outdoor playscapes, both natural and built, are essential for the fitness, health, and development of children and for their adaptation to their culture, society, and world.
Julie Johnson, Park Operations Division Head, City of Ocala, Florida The new fitness park at Jervey Gantt, featuring GTfit products..., is an example of how Ocala (Florida) is continually moving fitness forward to create a better way of life for our families.
Julie Johnson, Park Operations Division Head, City of Ocala, Florida The City of Ocala, Florida has long been a pioneer in providing opportunities for our citizens to lead active, healthy lives. The new GTfit Fitness Park at Jervey Gantt Health Trail is an example of how Ocala is continually moving fitness forward to create a better way of life for our families.

Tom Norquist

Senior Vice President of Marketing, Design and Product Development
Master Trainer, PlayCore’s Center for Professional Development

Tom Norquist joined PlayCore as Sales and Marketing Manager in 1993. Tom is currently the Senior Vice President of Marketing, Design and Product Development and has been with PlayCore since 1993, where he is responsible for guiding the Marketing, Product Development, Design, PlayWorx and CAD department roles in the company. 

Tom earned Bachelors of Science degrees in Finance/Law and Marketing from Portland State University. As a founding board member in 1995, past president, past treasurer and current secretary of the International Play Equipment Manufacturer’s Association (IPEMA) and long-term active American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) representative, over the past 30 years, Tom has been involved in all aspects of the play industry.

Under Tom’s leadership, IPEMA formed their value of play outreach effort through the www.voiceofplay.org website. He served from 2002-2004 on the Advisory Board for the National Program for Playground Safety (NPPS). For over a decade, he actively served in the (Access Board) Recreation Access Advisory Committee and Regulatory Negotiation meetings and additionally served on the advisory panel for the Access Board’s on-line Technical Assistance and Training for Play Area Accessibility.

Tom currently serves on the Board for the International Playground Contractor’s Association (NPCAI), and is a founding steering committee member and active leader on the U.S. Coalition for Play. Additionally, Tom recently joined Dr. Stuart Brown’s National Institute for Play (NIFP) Board and is the project co-leader to create the first known on-line database of scientific and academic research creating a cohesive picture about the proven scientific benefits of play.

Tom recently received Auburn University School of Industrial and Graphic Design Distinguished Service Award for his leadership with seven design studios over the past decade. Known for his boundless energy, Tom is a highly respected advocate for safer, creative, inclusive, and fun play for people of all ages and abilities.