The History of Leathers & Associates
When Bob Leathers opened his architectural business he planned to specialize in residential design and construction. But in 1971, he was asked to organize a group of people to build a playground at his childrenís elementary school in Ithaca, New York.
Bob interviewed the students at the elementary school and based his design on their ideas. The parents and the children worked together to create a magical structure. News of the projectís success quickly traveled to nearby communities, who were soon asking Bobís firm to help them create playgrounds. Thus began his community-built career, which has now spanned more than three decades. As news of his playgrounds spread, projects began to sprout up farther away. Since that first playground, the firm has worked on almost 2,000 projects throughout all 50 states as well as 7 other countries.
Many things have changed over the years. Bobís son, Marc Leathers, now owns Leathers & Associates. Marc has worked with the firm since he was a teenager. He and Bob worked together to complete a community-built playground at Marcís childrenís elementary school. Many parents who were once children helping design Leathersí playgrounds are now helping to coordinate community-built playgrounds for their own children.
Leathers & Associatesí staff responsibilities run the gamut from administration to design, drafting, project management, and construction supervision. Employees have worked at Leathers for an average of ten years. Almost all employees are Certified Playground Safety Inspectors through the National Recreation & Parks Association.