The Johnson County Park & Recreation District’s new chief financial officer brings a lot of knowledge to her new position, which she hopes will help the agency continue to grow.
“I bring an energy and desire to empower myself and those around me to achieve new heights,” said Noelle Testa of Overland Park, who began with JCPRD in late April. “Additionally, I bring a knowledge base as a financial auditor and then as a finance director managing a $45 million-dollar budget with daily operations of cash, investments, donations, and capital projects that can be utilized to enhance operations.”
A culture and synergy which emphasizes continuously striving to meet and exceed demands placed on park and recreation resources, is the greatest strength Testa sees in her new employer.
“JCPRD has a tremendous impact on the community I live in by providing opportunities to learn, connect with others, be creative and de-stress,” Testa said. “JCPRD’s greatest challenge as I see it today is keeping pace with the demands of citizens and constituents on park and recreation resources. Maximizing resources, as well as determining how to allocate resources over a wide range of program offerings to achieve long-term goals, can be challenging when serving the diverse population of Johnson County.”
Testa is a certified public accountant with more than 13 years of public accounting experience. A majority of her public accounting tenure was spent with BKD, LLP as an auditor working primarily with not-for-profit clients. While at BKD, LLP, she progressed into a manager position as the industry leader for the not-for-profit group within the firm’s Wichita office. In 2012, she transitioned from public accounting to assume the role of director of finance/controller for Ottawa (Kan.) University. During her six years with the university, Testa advanced the finance department by developing critical collaborative relationships with other departments, enhancing financial reporting to internal and external constituents, and implementing strategic initiatives for process improvements and new endeavors.
Testa holds a bachelor of science degree in accounting and economics from California State University, Long Beach and a master of business administration in finance and strategic innovation from Ottawa University. She is also a licensed certificated public accountant in the states of California and Kansas.
She currently serves as board chair for Prairie Paws Animal Shelter in Ottawa, where she previously served as treasurer for four and one-half years. She is also a sustaining member of the Junior League.
She is a native of southern California where she grew up, with the exception of about three years during junior high and high school when she lived in Maryland, outside of Washington D.C. After college and her early jobs, Testa relocated to Kansas to be closer to family. She has lived in Johnson County for about two and one-half years after spending four years in Ottawa. Testa and her fiancé, Todd Lewis, who is a mechanical engineer with the Federal Reserve Bank, are currently searching for a home to share with their “furry children“ which include her cats. Leo and Simon, and his dogs, Rebel and Hunter.
In her free time, Testa enjoys cooking, wine tasting, and food trucks. The couple also foster dogs for Kansas City Sheltie Rescue.