Nearly 100 attendees from multiple federal agencies, park and program offices, anthd from the ranks of the Southeast Regional Office gathered on Wednesday, October 24 to give best wishes to David Vela, who moves to the Washington Office in early November. David’s new title is Associate Director for Workforce Management. Also in attendance were David’s wife (Melissa) and his parents, Mercedes and Raymond Vela, who travelled from Wharton, Texas to be with their son.
During David’s 4.5 year tenure as Southeast Regional Director, the SER has gone from a "work in progress" to a"region on the rise." David restructured the Regional Directorate to incorporate three Deputy Regional Directors (each of whom manage regional program areas, as well as serve as direct supervisors for superintendents of parks in either the Appalachian-Piedmont Cluster, Atlantic Coast Cluster, or Gulf Coast Cluster) and a Associate Regional Director for Administration. He also helped to turn a spotlight on the breadth of human stories to be told for the Secretary/Director's American Latino Heritage Initiative and Sesquicentennial of the Civil War - emphasizing that through individual efforts, we can achieve global outcomes.
David’s new position marks his return to the Washington, D.C. metro area, where he served as the Superintendent of the George Washington Memorial Parkway prior to his tenure in Atlanta. As Associate Director for Workforce Management, David will be responsible for the Office of Human Resources, Learning and Development, Equal Opportunity Programs, Workplace Enrichment, Conflict Resolution, and multiple programs targeted at diversifying the workforce, enhancing workplace interests, enriching the educational experiences for all interested in making the NPS a career, and in helping to make the NPS relevant to all communities.
David is well known for the comments that he makes regarding his workforce, and the sacrifices that they make in protecting our nation's most special places. The NPS has been given many nicknames and taglines. Perhaps the best is "The Nation’s Storytellers." A storyteller will know how to keep their audience engaged and open. A storyteller is motivating and illuminating and, frequently – all too brief. David’s contributions as Southeast Regional Director fulfill the best ideas of a storyteller who will now make the entire Service his audience and focus.
Godspeed, and a safe journey from the employees of the Southeast Region