Tuesday, December 03, 2013
Shenandoah National Park (VA) Former YCC Employee Convicted Of Credit Card Fraud
Last August, a ranger began investigating the suspicious use of a government fleet credit card, employing credit card information obtained from the park’s budget office and working closely with a neighboring law enforcement agency to acquire video surveillance of the stolen credit card being used.
The ranger’s investigative efforts lead to the identification of a juvenile YCC park employee as the primary suspect. The cooperating law enforcement agency, which was already investigating similar illegal activity by the same suspect, took over the case in order to convict the juvenile under the state system.
The juvenile was found guilty in local court of 23 counts of theft and fraud. Restitution has been made to the park.
[Submitted by Brian Sikes, Chief Ranger]
NEWS AND NOTES
Northeast Region Northeast Region Director Dennis Reidenbach To Retire
Dennis Reidenbach will hang up his park ranger flat hat in early January after a 37-year career with the federal government. Reidenbach spent 30 years with the National Park Service, the last six years as the Northeast Region director based in Philadelphia.
“Even though he won’t be in uniform for our 2016 Centennial, Dennis has the Northeast Region well-positioned for our second century,” said Director Jarvis. “That’s Dennis – focused, dedicated – an example of the best of the best of National Park Service professionals. His work to create and support opportunities for young people and our newest citizens who may not have a connection with national parks or the work of the National Park Service has been an inspiration to me and to his colleagues across the country.”
“My career in the National Park Service has been more than I ever could have dreamed,” Reidenbach said. “After 37 years, I’m looking forward to spending more time with my wife and family and volunteering for service projects in my community.”
During his tenure as Northeast Region director, Reidenbach helped shape America’s newest national parks: Paterson Great Falls National Park, Fort Monroe National Monument, Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument, and First State National Monument.
Reidenbach also advanced the ProRanger Philadelphia program, created in partnership with Temple University, to establish a sound foundation for hiring the next generation of stewards.
"We established ProRanger Philadelphia to recruit, train and employ law enforcement park rangers for the National Park Service – with an emphasis on diversifying the workforce,” he said.
As regional director, Reidenbach was responsible for more than 80 national parks in 13 states from Maine to Virginia that welcome more than 50 million visitors a year and generate an economic benefit in excess of $1.5 billion. The region includes international icons like the Statue of Liberty, places that shaped our nation like Gettysburg National Military Park, sites that tell recent history like Flight 93 National Memorial, and half of the country’s national historic landmarks and national heritage areas.
Prior to becoming regional director, Reidenbach served as superintendent at Independence National Historical Park, where he had risen through the ranks since 1988. He played a critical leadership role in the planning, design and reconstruction of Independence Mall, a $340 million project that added the Liberty Bell Center, the National Constitution Center and the Independence Visitor Center in one of the largest urban redevelopment projects in the nation. He was recently honored with a distinguished service award for his significant contributions to advancing the mission of the National Park Service through focus and dedication to nationally significant programs and initiatives. Reidenbach was known for approaching his responsibilities as regional director with compassion, fairness, and intelligence.
Deputy Regional Director Mike Caldwell will guide the Northeast Region until a successor is named by Director Jarvis.
[Submitted by Jane Ahern, firstname.lastname@example.org, 215-597-0865]
Mount Rushmore National Memorial (SD) New Mount Rushmore Quarter Launched
The new Mount Rushmore quarter was released at a ceremony in Custer, South Dakota, on November 6th. About 1,400 people attended the ceremony.
The audience including the entire student body from Custer schools and the seventh through ninth grade classes from Hot Springs, South Dakota.
Acting Associate Director for Manufacturing for the US Mint David Croft and Superintendent Cheryl Schreier spoke at the event. The MC for the event was Dave Ressler, the director of the Custer Area Chamber of Commerce.
The ceremony culminated with Croft and Schreier placing the ceremonial quarter on the coin display, marking the official start of circulation of the quarter. After the ceremony, quarters were given to children by Croft, Schreier and a special guest, WW II veteran Don “Nick” Clifford (pictured). Nick is the only worker still living who helped carve the figures on the mountain. Other NPS and Xanterra Parks and Resort staff were also on hand to help deliver quarters.
“My favorite part was when Superintendent Schreier introduced Nick. The Custer student body started a standing ovation,” said Maureen Mcgee-Ballinger, the park’s chief of interpretation.
The Custer High School honors choir and band provided The National Anthem and additional music.
Concluding the event was a quarter exchange in which attendees could obtain first day issue rolls of the Mount Rushmore quarter, sponsored by the First Interstate Bank of Custer.
The Mount Rushmore quarter is the 20th coin in the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program, the United States Mint’s 12-year initiative to honor 56 national parks and other national sites across the country. The design of the Mount Rushmore quarter was inspired by historic photos of men putting the final details to Thomas Jefferson's face.
Free lesson plans based on the America Beautiful Quarters Program are available at http://www.usmint.gov/kids/teachers/.
Watch a video of the ceremony at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnbAhwUIpAA .
[Submitted by Blaine Kortemeyer, Assistant Chief of Interpretation and Education]
Valley Forge National Historical Park (PA) Park For Every Classroom Workshop Held
Valley Forge National Historical Park hosted a regional “Park For Every Classroom” (PEC) workshop over a three-day period in late November.
NPS staff, teachers and representatives of PEC community partners attended from Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller, Salem Maritime/Saugus Ironworks, Saint Gaudens, Springfield Armory, Fort McHenry/Hampton, Gateway and Fort Monroe.
The participants gathered to experience directly how the implementation of the PEC program at Valley Forge empowers educators to effectively teach about park history and significance with place-based learning activities and teacher-generated curriculum projects and lesson plans. Workshop discussions, guest speakers and field-based activities helped participants understand how experiential service-learning fits with the Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards.
Attendees from participating PEC parks shared promising practices with incoming PEC participants who are new to the program this year. Those attending gained a deeper understanding of teacher professional development with presentations by educators including Renee Jacobs from the park’s Teacher-Ranger-Teacher program, area educator Adam Messinger, West Chester University’s Mary Buckelew, and Barbara Masters, master teacher leader.
Discussions were facilitated by NPS education experts from the participating parks, including Amy Ruhe, Valley Forge; Vince Vaise, Fort McHenry; Kristen Schenning, The Maryland Historical Society; Sara Woodhead, from Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller’s Teacher-Ranger-Teacher program; Dan Meharg, Gateway; Maryann Zujewski, Salem Maritime; and Beth Beringer, Essex Heritage,
The workshop included a learning journey around the park, allowing participants to experience outdoor education as well as a variety of multi-media presentations in the education center and at the historic Philander Chase Knox estate.
The Friends of Valley Forge and The Encampment Store, both PEC partners, provided meals and hosted an evening reception in the Valley Forge Visitor Center with Washington reenactor Dean Mallissa. The PEC planning team and workshop leaders include Cris Constantine of the interpretation and education team of the Northeast Regional Office and Rebecca Stanfield McCown, Jen Cirillo, Delia Clark, Joan Haley and Rhonda Schier representing a variety of regional parks and partnerships.
Participants returned to their home parks informed and inspired with proven practices, powerful partnerships and a renewed vision for professional development, youth engagement and service learning.
[Submitted by Rhonda Schier, Chief of Interpretation and Education ]
Wilderness Stewardship Deadline Extended For Wilderness Conference Submissions
The deadline for submissions from any NPS employee, contractor, or partner for speakers, panelists, and poster presenters at the National Wilderness Conference next October has been extended until midnight on January 10th.
Next year marks the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act. The National Wilderness Conference, which will be held in Albuquerque from October 15th to October 19th, will wrap up a year of community-based events occurring around the nation, and marks the first national academic gathering of wilderness professionals in 25 years.
Through a combination of certified pre-conference trainings, field-based learning offerings, and track-based sessions and programs, this multi-day conference will give participants the best emerging knowledge about the interagency wilderness stewardship landscape and the training, strategies, tools, and skills needed to navigate future wilderness stewardship issues.
Online applications for any of the following tracks are due by January 10th -- history, stewardship, education, experience, civic engagement, and science. To apply, go to https://www.regonline.com/wildernessconferenceRFP.
While official NPS approval for conference attendance has not yet been announced, interested attendees are encouraged to submit proposals. Attendance approval will be, in part, determined by the active conference participation level of those interested in attending.
[Submitted by Erin Drake, email@example.com, 202-513-7130] More Information...
Montezuma Castle National Monument (AZ) GS-0025-12 Chief Ranger
Dates: 11/22/2013 - 12/16/2013
Montezuma Castle National Monument has issued an announcement for a chief ranger.
Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.
This announcement closes on December 16th.
[Submitted by Marilyn Kozak, firstname.lastname@example.org, 602-794-3806] More Information...