The founding director of Come Alive Outside plans to be gone by Sept. 1, but says the organization is poised to continue being successful given who will fill his role.
Andy Paluch, program director at Come Alive Outside, said Monday he will be joining TPW Real Estate.
“They’re involved in all kinds of things,” he said. “I’m looking forward to getting some new energy going around towards real estate here in Rutland County.”
TPW Real Estate is based in Manchester Center, but has projects elsewhere. A notable one is the former Vermont Marble Company building in Proctor, which it is working on redeveloping.
Paluch said the world of real estate began fascinating him three years ago when he bought his house in Rutland.
“I think real estate is a huge part of economic development,” he said. ”It’s exciting to still be connected to the community, still serving the community, and learning and growing and doing these things around real estate.”
He said he will be under a contract with Come Alive Outside until the end of the year, acting as an adviser and consultant for the organization, a nonprofit which aims to improve people’s physical and mental well-being by promoting outdoor events and activities.
Paluch said he’s pleased with the decision to have the group focused on Rutland and the work done building on partnerships formed by Russ Marsdan, the current president of Come Alive Outside’s Board of Directors.
The group has also worked heavily with local school districts and large employers like Rutland Regional Medical Center.
He said the COVID-19 pandemic shifted Come Alive Outside’s plans for this year, but it will continue to work on a smartphone app that connects people to its programs.
Taking over for Paluch as program director will be Myra Peffer, who founded Wonderfeet Kids Museum and served as its executive director.
Peffer didn’t return calls seeking comment on Monday.
According to a release from Come Alive Outside, Peffer has served on its Board of Directors for the past two years and worked with Paluch to create the Pine Cone Adventure Trail at Pine Hill Park.
Paluch said last year Come Alive Outside hired Arwen Turner, and that between Turner, Peffer, and the others at Come Alive, it’s in a good position to continue its work.
“We are so grateful for Andy Paluch’s programmatic leadership over the last several years and we will honor Andy’s energy and vision for Come Alive Outside by continuing to implement excellent programs in a fun and impact driven way,” Turner stated in a release.