The Morning Report

Monday, March 02, 2015

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Northeast Region
150th Of Civil War Peace Conference Commemorated

On January 30th and January 31st, Fort Monroe National Monument, in partnership with the Casemate Museum and Fort Monroe Authority, commemorated the 150th anniversary of the Hampton Roads peace conference. This historic attempt to negotiate a peaceful end to the American Civil War took place on February 3, 1865, just two months before Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s surrender at Appomattox Courthouse.

The park's staff collaborated with park partners and in particular, the Casemate Museum and Fort Monroe Authority, who took the lead in the weekend’s commemoration. The ability to execute successful events such as the 150th anniversary of the Hampton Roads peace conference wouldn't have been possible otherwise.

“The diversity that we have here at Fort Monroe makes it a stronger place,” said Superintendent Kirsten Talken-Spaulding of the many partners that came together to make the event a huge success.

On Friday, a combined total of 250 school children from Phoebus High School in Hampton, Virginia, and a local homeschool group participated in an educational workshop. Activities included a tour of the Virginia Civil War 150 Historymobile, a play organized by the Hampton History Museum, a facilitated dialog exercise, and a walking tour conducted by Ranger Aaron Firth.

Prior to their visit to Fort Monroe, the students from Phoebus High School prepared with classroom pre-visits, conducted jointly by Firth and Casemate Museum Education and Volunteer Coordinator Darcy Nelson. As a result of the pre-visits, two students signed up as volunteers in the joint Fort Monroe Authority/park Volunteers-In-Parks program.

On Saturday, the events were open to the general public. The Virginia Civil War 150 Historymobile was available all day and the film “Lincoln” was shown in the Fort Monroe Theater. A round table of four history scholars from three local universities answered the public’s questions about the film and the events that took place 150 years ago in the waters off Hampton Roads.

“The National Park Service stepped up in a big way,” said Glenn Oder, Fort Monroe Authority's executive director, regarding the park's role in helping the event be such a success.

The partnership environment at Fort Monroe is a shining example of how newer park units are managing to function under limited staffing and budgets. The park's Planning Vision Statement focuses on the partnership first, and how through collaboration, the Authority, the City of Hampton, and the National Park Service can achieve success.

Fort Monroe was created by Presidential Proclamation on November 1, 2011. It is located on Old Point Comfort in southeastern Virginia just a couple miles outside the downtown area of the City of Hampton. A historically significant fort near the entrance of the Chesapeake Bay, Fort Monroe has ties to Native Americans, European colonization, exploration, American slavery and the struggle for freedom, and the defense of our nation.

[Submitted by Dave Rosehill,, (215) 327-9139]

World Ranger Congress
Host Parks Sought For International Delegate Assignments

The Association of National Park Rangers (ANPR), a member of the International Ranger Federation, is seeking host parks for shadow assignments for international delegates to the Eighth World Ranger Congress in May, 2016.

ANPR, in collaboration with the National Park Service, the George Wright Society, Colorado State University, and other partners, will host the World Ranger Congress in Estes Park, Colorado, from May 21st to May 27th next year. It will be held at YMCA of the Rockies, located just outside of Rocky Mountain National Park.

This event is recognized by the NPS as part of the National Park Service’s centennial celebration. An estimated 300 to 400 delegates are expected to attend from other ranger associations from North America and around the world. Delegates are expected from 40 or more nations.  

As part of the Congress, it is customary for the host organization to facilitate training and/or shadow assignments for interested international delegates. Shadow assignments may occur before and after the Congress. Congress organizers are seeking national park units that would be willing to host one or two international delegates for three to five days in a shadow or training assignment.   

As a host, please consider what you and your park can offer an international delegate. For example, a three-day shadow assignment with a resource specialist focusing on endangered species, work on a trail crew for a week, attendance at interpretive or search and rescue training, or, for the right person, shadow a park manager.  

What you get in return is an exciting opportunity to exchange ideas about park management across the globe and gain a new friend. From past Congresses, we know there is interest in these type of opportunities.

ANPR plans to create a menu of options for training or shadow assignments on the Congress registration website ( ).  International delegates will choose a park and activity that interest them, then contact the host park representative directly and make their own arrangements to travel to the park. Host parks will be responsible for providing housing and travel support within the park during the shadow assignment. Delegates should be signed up as VIP’s.  Delegates will be responsible for providing their own meals and travel to and from the shadow assignment.

Participating parks will list programs available for shadow assignment and enter the number of days available for a shadow assignment in each program area. Participants (again, a maximum of two per park) will choose the park and program or programs they are most interested in and number of days they wish to participate.

Offerings might include something like the following:

  • Resource management – Shadow a resource manager for a day.  You will receive an introduction to natural resource concerns related to water quality; assist with the field collection of water samples.
  • Cultural resource management – Shadow an archeologist for a day.  Participate in an archeological site visit with monitoring documentation.
  • Interpretation and visitor education – Shadow a park naturalist for two days.  Learn how to put together a formal evening program.
  • Visitor protection and emergency services – Shadow a law enforcement ranger for a day.  Participate in search and rescue training.
  • Wilderness management – Shadow a wilderness ranger for two days. Participate in an overnight patrol. Provide support to rangers in removing trash and cleanup of campsites.
  • Wildland fire and aviation program management – Shadow a fire management officer for a day.  Participate in preplanning and fire plan development for a prescribed fire. Participate in wildland fire refresher training. Shadow an aviation program manager for a day. Observe aviation safety training and team development.

Due to the challenges of organizing international travel, particularly for those from developing countries, we hope to begin advertising such opportunities on our website in the spring of 2015.

For more information and questions, please contact activity coordinator Cindy Purcell at, or Joe Evans, WRC logistics chief, at

For more information on the 8th World Ranger Congress, please click on the link below.

[Submitted by Joe Evans]

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United States Park Police
Awards, Promotions And Swearing-In Ceremony Held

On February 17th, the United States Park Police hosted an awards, promotion and swearing in ceremony at the Anacostia Operations Facility in Washington, DC.

A total of 33 awards were conferred to recognize Force personnel for their service and continued contributions to the public. Awards included a chief’s certificate of appreciation, two unit citations given to a total of 16 employees, a lifesaving award, and 15 chief’s certificates for outstanding police service.

Promotions included:

  • Lieutenant Pamela Smith, who was promoted to captain, San Francisco Field Office
  • Lieutenant Robert Lachance, who was promoted to captain, Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, and
  • Sergeant Jonathan Hofflinger, who was promoted to lieutenant, Washington Field Office.

A total of 18 new recruits were sworn in by Chief of Police Robert D. MacLean and will begin their 18-week training program at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Facility in Glynco, Georgia.  

[Submitted by Sergeant Lelani Woods, Public Information Officer]

NPS Alumni
Former Superintendent Bill Wellman Receives DOI's Highest Honor

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell recognized the outstanding career of William “Bill” Wellman by granting him the Distinguished Service Award on May 30, 2013. 

Wellman, who served as superintendent of Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Curecanti National Recreation Area from 2003 to 2006, was unable to receive the award in person at that time.  On February 18th, current Superintendent Bruce Noble presented the Secretary’s award directly to Wellman.

“Throughout a 43-year career in the National Park Service, Mr. Wellman worked diligently with fellow NPS staff and partners to preserve and support a diverse cross section of parks across America,” said Jewell. “Of particular note is his skilled, resourceful, and diplomatic management on a contentious national stage following the events of September 11, 2001.” 

Acknowledging his significant contributions at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument and Big Bend National Park, Secretary Jewell’s citation went on to say this: “During these difficult years, Mr. Wellman set an example for the NPS through his diplomatic efforts to preserve resources and the visitor experience while working with other Federal agencies to ensure national security along the border.”

Secretary Jewell closed with the following:  “Mr. Wellman displayed equal skill and expertise in park relations throughout his NPS career, putting into practice his belief that good stewards must ‘define, understand, and manage.’ For more than four decades, Mr. Wellman generously shared his time and experience, inspiring scores of NPS employees with good humor, good intent, and good sense.”

Bill Wellman retired from the National Park Service in 2012 and is now residing in Crawford, Colorado.

[Submitted by Sandra Snell-Dobert, PIO, Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Curecanti National Recreation Area]

Office of Legislative and Congressional Affairs
Weekly Legislative Activities Report

The Office of Legislative and Congressional Affairs puts out weekly reports on hearings, new legislation and other activities on the Hill. This report covers activities in Congress through February 27th.

In order to obtain the full text of any of the bills that appear below, click on the following link: . That will take you to Thomas, the Library of Congress legislative tracking system. Enter the bill number in the “Search Bill Text” block, being sure to also click on the “Bill Number” option below the block.


New Public Laws

Nothing to report.

Floor Action

Nothing to report. 

Committee Activity

On February 24th, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee held an oversight hearing on the Department of the Interior’s budget request for FY16.  The Department’s witness was Secretary Sally Jewell. 

On February 25th, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies held a hearing on the Department of the Interior’s budget request for FY16.  The Department’s witness was Secretary Sally Jewell.

New Bills Introduced

The following new bills of interest to the NPS were introduced:

  • H.R. 1033 (Beatty, D-OH-3), to direct the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resource study to determine the suitability and feasibility of establishing the John P. Parker House in Ripley, Ohio, as a unit of the National Park System.
  • H.R. 1052 (Schrader, D-OR-5), to amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate segments of the Molalla River in the State of Oregon as components of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, and for other purposes.
  • S. 541 (Brown, D-OH), to direct the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resource study to determine the suitability and feasibility of establishing the John P. Parker House in Ripley, Ohio, as a unit of the National Park System.
  • H.R. 1077 (Kirkpatrick, D-AZ-1), to modify the boundary of the Casa Grande Ruins National Monument, and for other purposes.
  • S. 556 (Murkowski, R-AK), to protect and enhance opportunities for recreational hunting, fishing, and shooting, and for other purposes.

Upcoming Committee Activity

On March 5th, the House Committee on Natural Resources will hold an oversight hearing on the Department of the Interior’s spending priorities and the President’s FY16 budget proposal.  The hearing will take place at 9:00 a.m. in 1324 Longworth House Office Building.  The Department’s witness will be Secretary Sally Jewell.

On March 5th, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies will hold a hearing on the National Park Service’s FY 2016 budget request.  The hearing will take place at 9:00 a.m. in B-308 Rayburn.  The Department’s witness will be Director Jon Jarvis.


For additional information, please visit the Legislative and Congressional Affairs Office website at

[Submitted by Andrea Dekoter]


Glacier National Park
GL-0025-9 Protection Ranger (Lateral)

Glacier National Park is seeking a candidates for a lateral reassignment to the Two Medicine Area Ranger position. This is a permanent full-time, career-seasonal position with 13 pay periods in pay status guaranteed. The non-pay period is not expected to exceed eight weeks.

This is a required occupancy position with housing available in East Glacier Park. Travel, transportation, and relocation expenses are authorized. However, the government will not provide the services of a third party contractor for the guaranteed home sale program (FAM 2008-017).

Due to the isolated living conditions , candidates are strongly encouraged to research the area. Information on Glacier National Park can be found at

The ranger selected will oversee a full range of law enforcement and emergency services operations in their respective area. The position is covered by 6(c) retirement and is classified as primary law enforcement position with responsibilities for emergency medical services, search and rescue, backcountry management, wildland fire, structural fire, wildlife management, and resource management and protection. As the Two Medicine Area Ranger, the individual selected will provide oversight for daily patrol activities and provide leadership for seasonal park ranger staff. This position offers the opportunity to practice the full range of traditional ranger skills and duties in a highly motivated team oriented environment.

The candidates must possess a NPS Law Enforcement Commission and National Registry EMT Basic certification.  Winter and river patrol skills are desirable. 

Glacier National Park straddles the Continental Divide in northwest Montana, and East Glacier Park is situated on the Rocky Mountain Front with ready access to year-round recreation, shopping, and other leisure activities, in both east-side and west-side locations. Summer temperatures are moderate with highs near 80 and lows in the 40s. Winter temperatures vary from 40 below to 40 above zero. Wind and snow are common but sunny days prevail. Snow depths range from bare ground to several feet.

If you are interested in the Two Medicine position, please contact Jason Griswold, Walton-Two Medicine District Ranger, at 406-888-5972 or

Interested applicants should submit the following:

  • A detailed resume
  • A current SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action (and SF-50 confirming reassignment eligibility if different/not current or showing full performance level of GL-9)
  • A copy of your current or latest performance appraisal

Email documents to or Glacier National Park, Attn: Mary Lou Fitzpatrick, Human Resources Office, P.O. Box 128, West Glacier, MT 59936.

Applications/resumes must be received by March 13th.

Big Thicket National Preserve (TX)
GS-0025-9 Park Ranger (Centennial Coordinator)

Big Thicket National Preserve is seeking to fill a term park ranger position. The person selected will be responsible for organizing efforts related to the park’s NPS centennial celebration.

The mission of the NPS centennial is to "connect with and create the next generation of park visitors, supporters, and advocates."  Significant community outreach efforts and media interaction is anticipated. This position will be located within the Division of Interpretation and Education, but significant cross-divisional work is anticipated. This individual will serves as a key member of the preserve multi-divisional centennial committee.

Big Thicket is in southeast Texas just north of Beaumont and 75 miles northeast of Houston. The preserve consists of nine land units and six water corridors encompassing more than 112,000 acres scattered across a 3,500-square-mile area. The Big Thicket, often referred to as a “biological crossroads,” is a transition zone between four distinct vegetation types – the moist eastern hardwood forest, the southwestern desert, the southeastern swamp, and the central prairies. Species from all of these different vegetation types come together in the thicket, exhibiting a variety of vegetation and wildlife that has received national interest.

For the full position announcement and information on the application process, click on the link below.

Contact Chief of Interpretation & Education Jason Ginder (, 409-951-6721) for additional questions you may have about this opportunity.
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