The Morning Report

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

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Natural Resource Stewardship and Science
NPS Releases Ungulate Management Review

Accompanied by a memorandum from Director Jarvis, the Natural Resource Stewardship and Science (NRSS) Directorate recently released an unprecedented review of ungulate management across the entire agency entitled “A Comprehensive Review of National Park Service Ungulate Management: Second Century Challenges, Opportunities, and Coherence.”

Director Jarvis asked NRSS to conduct this review and determine ungulate management issues, needs, and recommendations that could inform effective ungulate management approaches and practices consistent with the NPS mission.

Working with regional offices, NRSS convened the NPS Ungulate Management Working Group, comprised of 18 park, regional, and NRSS representatives and three esteemed academics to conduct:

  • a detailed review of all known NPS ungulate management plans from the past 20 years;
  • a detailed survey of ungulate management at 272 parks;
  • structured interviews with NPS regional offices, superintendents, resource managers, and law enforcement personnel; and
  • host a servicewide ungulate management workshop in Fort Collins, Colorado.

This report documents that native and non-native ungulates now occur across at least 56% of all NPS units, comprising over 98% of NPS lands, with twice as many non-native species than native species present. As the NPS enters a second century of natural and cultural resource stewardship, the agency faces distinct challenges and opportunities for coherent and effective ungulate management.

While ecological, socio-cultural, and political complexities across the NPS preclude a “one-size solution fits all” approach, contradictions in ungulate management across the agency can result in undesirable outcomes such as internal and external confusion, strained relationships with partners and stakeholders, and ineffective and inefficient allocation of resources.

This report offers a suite of key findings, recommendations, action items, and guiding principles to help NPS decision makers navigate the social and ecological complexities of managing ungulates. It can be downloaded from by searching the Data Store for reference code #2218942.

[Submitted by Jessica Resnik, Wildlife Biologist]

Office of Relevancy, Diversity and Inclusion
New Employee Resource Groups Formed

Six Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) have formed to advance the goals of relevancy, diversity, and inclusion (RDI) throughout the NPS. 

These are employee-led groups with members who are drawn together by a common interest and work towards advancing relevancy, diversity, and inclusion to meet the NPS mission. ERGs benefit employees by increasing connectivity and retention and benefit the organization by expanding recruitment efforts, building more inclusive work environments, and strengthening NPS relevance to the public.

These groups also provide developmental opportunities for employees to gain leadership skills. ERGs are open to all employees across the service. Guidelines for ERGs can be found on the Employee Center, along with information on how to start or join an ERG, and expectations for employees.

NPS Employee Resource Groups include:

  • African American Employee Resource Group (AAERG) - This group recently formed in November 2014 and is lead by Keena Graham, Acting RDI Program Manager for the Northeast Region. The group, with representation across the service, is currently developing their purpose and function statement, which will focus on mentoring and retention.
  • Allies for Inclusion – Allies for Inclusion is an employee driven group dedicated to facilitating field-level discussions on the topics of race and ethnicity, sexual orientation, abilities, gender privilege, veteran status, youth, and other topics. Since 2012, Allies for Inclusion has facilitated over 40 “brown bag” with 500 attending in the Washington DC area. 78% of the attendees believed that the forum would assist them in engaging in similar conversations with co-workers and visitors in the future. The group is currently developing a proposal to expand the group across the service to provide safe spaces for dialogue on RDI topics.
  • Council for Indigenous, Relevance, Communication, and Excellence (CIRCLE) –CIRCLE was formed in 2013 and is led by Otis Halfmoon, American Indian Specialist in the Office of RDI, and Alisha Deegan, Facility Operations Specialist at Mount Rushmore National Memorial. CIRCLE is a resource for employees of the National Park Service to enhance their understanding of American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian (AI/AN/NH) issues. The group continues to hold monthly calls and is currently developing Tribal Consultation training in collaboration with the Mather Training Center.
  • Hispanic/Latino Employee Resource Group - This group is being led by Vanessa Torres, LA District Manager at Santa Monica Mountains. The group held their first meeting in March 2015 and is interested in engaging with ongoing Latino initiatives and spreading this information to the field.
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Employee Resource Group - The LGBT ERG is being led by Daniel Luther, Park Guide at the Andrew Johnson National Historic Site and Chris Beagan, Landscape Architect at the NPS Olmsted Center of Landscape Preservation. The National Park Service LGBT ERG serves the agency and its employees by addressing the unique needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender personnel and visitors. The group will work to enhance the visibility of LGBT history in the National Park System and to assist the agency in improving the working environment for and hiring, retaining, and improving visibility of its LGBT employees. The group held their first conference call in April 2015.
  • Student Employee Network (SEN) – The Student Employee Network was formed in 2010 and is led by a leadership team consisting of 12 NPS employees spanning from Puerto Rico to Alaska. SEN is a student-led, student-based communication network that fosters idea sharing, innovation, and professional development for current and future student employees of the National Park Service. The group works to serve student NPS employees by answering questions regarding Pathways and connecting student employees with valuable resources. For more information email or check out the NPS Student Employee Network on Facebook.

For more information on Employee Resource Groups: email • call 202-354-6981• visit The Employee Center

[Submitted by Colette Carmouche]

NPS Alumni
Passing Of Marian Albright Schenck

Marian Albright Schenck, 93, daughter of past Director Horace Albright, passed away on April 17th in Red Bluff, California.

Many in the National Park Service family knew Marian and her husband, Ros, and enjoyed the colorful stories of her childhood in Yellowstone and Yosemite and in Washington, D.C. during the early years of the National Park Service. 

Marian’s commitment to and sharing of her father’s legacy was a gift to all. 

Click on the link below for the complete obituary and to leave a message on the guest book.
 More Information...
Intermountain Region
Ceremony Marks 20th Anniversary Of Murrah Building Bombing

April 19th marked the 20th anniversary of the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.  A crowd of approximately 5,000 people were present at the Oklahoma City National Memorial for the Remembrance Ceremony to honor the 168 killed and nearly 700 injured. 

The keynote speaker for the commemoration ceremony was former President William (Bill) J. Clinton, who visited Oklahoma City following the bombing and spoke at the dedication. Other speakers included Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, FBI Director James Comey, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, and former Governor Frank Keating.

This year not only commemorated the twentieth anniversary of the tragic event, it also represented the twentieth annual Remembrance Ceremony, which are held every year on the anniversary of the bombing. Presenters and participants pledged once again to uphold the mission of the memorial “…to remember those who were killed, those who survived, and those changed forever.” 

A strong emphasis was also placed on the Oklahoma Standard campaign, which calls for a revival of the extensive acts of service, honor, and kindness performed to help others after the bombing.

The country continues to be inspired by the strength and perseverance demonstrated after that tragic day.  

[Submitted by Cassie Branstetter,]

Operational Leadership
Personalizing Safety With NPS Operational Leadership Partners

In organizations with strong safety cultures, employees personalize safety and risk management throughout the workforce.  One mechanism to do this is through communications.  Communicating serious injuries, or even fatalities, among the workforce in a way that allows others to empathize at a human level increases individual and team commitment to safety.  It often causes individuals to reflect on the fact that “it could have been one of my co-workers, employees, or me”. 

Personalizing safety through operational leadership principles such as assertive messages, near miss reporting, and sharing lessons learned, allows us to experience a connection to the safety of others.  When we hear that a colleague is involved in a serious accident on the job, employees feel the impact whether they knew the individual personally or not.

On April 22, several NPS Operational Leadership partners gathered for a special project geared to convey the personal message of one of our own.  Superintendent Vaughn Baker and the staff at Rocky Mountain National Park hosted the event.  Chief Ranger Mark Magnuson and others provided coordination.  NPS Distance Learning Manager Dale Carpenter (STMA) served as director and interviewer.   Videographer and Visual Information Specialist Alison Mims attended to filming and production technology.  Seasonal Park Ranger Jim Syvertsen (YELL) narrated his personal, and compelling, story.

With lights, camera, and seventy Rocky Mountain employees at the visitor center theater, Syvertsen lead the audience through 90-minutes of the Stocking Lake Incident where in 2011 he was injured in a serious accident while working in the high country of Sequoia-Kings Canyon.   His injuries resulted in amputation of his lower right leg.  Syvertsen’s narration covered a timeline of events, life-saving team mates, and personal reflections.  He also included human errors and many other operational leadership concepts. 

NPS Operational Leadership Program Manager Mark Herberger says “sharing personal stories and lessons learned are powerful tools to convey a sense of safety and risk management to fellow employees.  Jim is a remarkable Park Service ranger and willingly conveys his story in the hopes that it will positively impact fellow employees.  We all have plenty of decisions to make during the course of our workday; let’s learn from one another on how to make the best decisions so we all come home safely at the end of the day.” 

Herberger continues with “let’s also convey a word of thanks to our NPS OL partners who have been planning and coordinating this event for quite a while.  We have been able to seize this opportunity to film and interview Jim but it wouldn’t have been possible without the efforts of NPS Learning & Development and Rocky Mountain NP,  especially Dale Carpenter, Alison Mims, and Mark Magnuson.”

Final products from the presentation and interviews will include an edited version of Syvertsen’s presentation, an orientation video for NPS Operational Leadership, and numerous topical video clips for OL facilitators to use as refresher classes and training aids.  Learning & Development also will develop a video to showcase special technologies and mechanisms in long-distance learning.

For more information on NPS Operational Leadership, please go to:

[Submitted by Mark Herberger]

Grand Teton National Park (WY)
Fourth Graders Rock The Tetons

Grand Teton National Park celebrated National Park Week and the “Every Kid in a Park” initiative by taking all 150 of the fourth grade students in Teton County on a field trip to study the park’s geology.

Each day of National Park Week, park interpretation and education staff led a group of the local students on a field trip into the backcountry, where they hiked the contour of a glacial moraine, got their hands dirty testing soils by making “soil ribbons,” identified rocks, and learned about the creation of the Teton Mountain Range.

Park staff were glad to engage the next generation of park visitors in the spirit of exploration and stewardship, and it turns out the students were thrilled with the opportunity as well.

“I wish we could have school in the national park every day,” said one student as he hiked back to the school bus.

Despite living just a few miles south of the park’s boundary, it was the first trip into the park for many of the students.

“Jackson Hole is a community with a big divide in opportunity,” Education Specialist Megan Kohli said. “Many of the Latino students, who make up nearly 40 percent of the school, don’t come to the park. This is a great chance for them to get some experience exploring the park in their own backyard.”

[Submitted by Katie Tozier, Interpretive Park Ranger]


Lake Mead National Recreation Area - NV, AZ
GS-0025-12 Supervisory Park Ranger

Lake Mead National Recreation Area has issued an announcement for a supervisory park ranger.

Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.

It closes on May 11th.
 More Information...
Pacific West Region
GL-0025-7/9 Protection Rangers

An announcement has been issued by Pacific West Region for several protection ranger positions at Lake Mead NRA, Santa Monica Mountains NRA and Death Valley NP.

Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.

It closes on May 8th.
 More Information...
Intermountain Region
GL-0025-9 Protection Ranger (Lateral)

Dates: 04/27/2015 - 05/08/2015

Zion National Park is seeking qualified applicants interested in a non-competitive, lateral transfer to a permanent full time full-performance protection ranger position. A Type I NPS law enforcement commission is required and candidates will be required to pass a drug test. 

Located in Washington, Iron, and Kane counties in southwestern Utah, Zion National Park encompasses some of the most scenic canyon country in the United States. The park is characterized by high plateaus, a labyrinth of narrow, deep, sandstone canyons, and striking rock towers and mesas. The North Fork of the Virgin River has carved a spectacular gorge through Zion Canyon, where sandstone walls rise 2,000 to 3,000 feet above the canyon floor. The southern part of the park is a lower desert area, with colorful mesas bordered by rocky canyons and washes. The northern sections of the park are higher plateaus covered by forests.

Zion National Park sees approximately 3.2 million visitors a year, with about 90% of the visitation occurring in the small developed area of Zion Canyon.  Zion Canyon contains two of the three campgrounds for the park, a concession hotel and four employee dorms, the Zion Canyon Visitor Center, Zion Human History Museum, concession run horse rides and shuttle system.  Zion Canyon also contains the historic Zion-Mt Carmel Tunnel which requires a special use permit system to control oversize traffic through the tunnel .

The park has a progressive technical rescue program, its own multi-level transporting ambulance and structural fire brigade. Rangers provide mutual aid support to the local town of Springdale/Rockville for law enforcement, EMS and structural fire.  Zion sees approximately 4,000 incidents annually with over 275 medicals, 80 SARs, and 30 structural fire call outs.  After hours callouts for the park (medicals, structural fire, alarm calls etc.) average 50 a year.    

All rangers share the responder duties of EMS, SAR, wildland and structural fire.  Field rangers also carry large collateral projects such as structural fire coordinator, EMS coordinator etc.  This position would be responsible for the hiring and supervising of the Zion Canyon seasonal law enforcement staff (2-4 individuals depending on time of year) and assist with the supervision of the volunteer program within the law enforcement division.  This position may also be asked to take on other emergency services collaterals as needed.

The position is a required occupancy position with housing located in the headquarters area in Springdale, Utah.  PCS relocation expenses are authorized.

Springdale is a small town (500 residents) with several hotels (1000 beds). There is a small elementary school in town and a day care within the park. Grocery shopping and restaurants are available in Springdale.  Larger grocery stores and medical care is located in Hurricane (25 miles) and St George (47 miles).  Cell service (Verizon) works within most of Zion Canyon. High speed internet is not available in the housing areas.  Winters are mild at Headquarters with some snow (more at the higher elevations within the park) while summers are hot with several weeks above 100 degrees.

The individual must be able to live and work closely with a very small team. Applicants must possess and maintain a National Registry EMT certification or higher. Other desired certification, though not required, include: National Registry Advanced Life Support certification, structural firefighter and/or driver operator, technical rescue and wildland fire fighter (red card).

If interested in the position at Zion National Park please submit the following:  resume, a copy of your most recent performance appraisal and a copy of your most recent SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action.

If you are interested in this opportunity send application to Janel Bassett, Human Resources, at 435-772-0154 or by e-mail For specific job information, contact or 435-772-7852.

Interested applicants should submit the following:

  • A resume 
  • A current SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, documenting permanent competitive civil service status, title, series and grade. DO NOT SEND AWARD SF-50’s as they do not document needed information.
  • A copy of your latest performance appraisal. If you don’t have one, explain in your resume why.

Applications/resumes must be postmarked by the closing date, or received electronically by the close of business on the May 8th closing date. 

[Submitted by Janel Bassett,, 435-772-0154]

Cultural Resources
GS-0170-11 Historian

Dates: 05/01/2015 - 05/14/2015

The Cultural Resources Directorate has issued merit promotion and all source announcements for a bilingual historian. Applicants must be fluent orally and in writing in both English and Spanish.

This position is open under Merit Promotion and All Sources.

Death Valley National Park (CA)
WG-5823-10 Automotive Mechanic

Death Valley National Park is seeking candidates for a position as automotive mechanic.

Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.

It closes on May 8th.
 More Information...