May 22, 2023

Former KLC President Honored

Former Kentucky League of Cities President and Elizabethtown Mayor David Willmoth Jr. was honored Friday with the dedication of a park pavilion in his name in the Elizabethtown Nature Park.

Willmoth served as KLC president in 2007. He was also a member of the KLC Board of Directors from 1999-2003, the KLC Executive Board from 2003-2008, and the KLC Insurance Services Board from 2005-2009.

Willmoth was a member of the Elizabethtown City Council from 1974-1999. He was elected the city’s mayor in 1999 and served three terms, with his tenure ending in 2011.

The pavilion and the park were chosen because Willmoth was instrumental in their creation, according to Elizabethtown executive assistant Kelly Johnson. Johnson began her career with the city in 1999 as Willmoth’s assistant and continues to serve in the same role under current mayor Jeff Gregory.

“The property for the park was purchased during Mayor Willmoth’s tenure, and he was instrumental in making that happen,” Johnson stated.

Elizabethtown Public Relations Specialist Amy Inman said Willmoth was instrumental in helping the Elizabethtown Sports Park become a reality, and a street at the park is named for him, although it’s not officially the park’s address. She said Willmoth was also vital in implementing the city’s restaurant tax. Mayor Jeff Gregory said the sports park brings more than 100,000 visitors and an estimated $15-$20 million annually to the city. He said the restaurant tax generates approximately $4 million annually, and revenue from both projects is rising.

“All of the city’s previous mayors have a building or a significant piece of land assigned bearing their name,” Inman said. “Mayor Gregory and (City Administrator) Ed Poppe felt he was so impactful in this community that he needed a building named in his honor. Now, he will get to celebrate that with his family and friends.”

Former Elizabethtown mayors Edna Berger, Pat Durbin, and David Willmoth are joined by current Mayor Jeff Gregory (Photo courtesy: City of Elizabethtown)