The Morning Report

Thursday, September 11, 2014

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NEWS AND NOTES



The White House
U.S. Flags To Fly At Half Staff Today

President Obama has directed that all U.S. flags be lowered to half staff from sunrise to sunset today in observance of Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance.

The proclamation reads in part as follows:

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim September 11, 2014, as Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance. I call upon all departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the United States to display the flag of the United States at half-staff on Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance in honor of the individuals who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. I invite the Governors of the United States and its Territories and interested organizations and individuals to join in this observance. I call upon the people of the United States to participate in community service in honor of those our Nation lost, to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies and activities, including remembrance services, and to observe a moment of silence beginning at 8:46 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time to honor the innocent victims who perished as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

For the full text of the proclamation, click on the link below.
 More Information...
San Juan Island National Historical Park (WA)
Lummi Nation Returns To English Camp

Members of the Lummi Nation for the first time in decades brought ceremony and dance to San Juan Island in July and August as part of their project to reintroduce traditional fishing practices to Lummi youth, launching from the shores of San Juan Island National Historical Park's English Camp unit.

English Camp was once the site of a Lummi winter village (including a 600-foot longhouse) and is considered the ancestral home and birthplace of the Lummi people. During the winter, Garrison Bay was an ideal spot for a village because it is protected from harsh winter winds by the surrounding hills. The placid waters provided a safe place to dock canoes, gather clams and fish during the winter.

The Lummi began exploring reef net sites during the park's annual encampment weekend in late July, joining reenactors from across the Pacific Northwest on the English Camp parade ground.

Immediately following the activities at the San Juan County Fair in mid-July, fairgoers along with park staff and volunteers helped re-trailer the canoe, called XWLEMI (Lummi), and caravanned to English Camp. Lummi Nation members presented the National Park Service and Friends of San Juan Islands with sand, water and a cedar tree from Lummi Nation.

Chief Bill James addressed the gathering in Xwlemi Chosen (Lummi language), while others present also shared their thoughts around a circle. The beach was blessed with the sand and water from Lummi Nation and the canoe was launched. The Lummi Youth Canoe family then paddled around the bay as their ancestors once did, singing the Flood Song, the Lummi Nation's creation song.

"This was the best moment of my summer—seeing the Lummi youths launch a canoe…and paddle around Guss Island (sacred in their origin myth and part of the park)," said Superintendent Lee Taylor.

The group from Lummi Nation camped for two nights at English Camp with a permit from the National Park Service. Shirley Williams, of the Lummi Shelangen (cultural way of life) assembled a slide show and posted on YouTube in acknowledgment of a significant and magical summer.

A few weeks later they returned to bless a totem pole that had been on a 1,700-mile journey in the United States and Canada to raise awareness of American Indiana and First Nation peoples' commitment to the environment.

"Hy'shqe, thank you, to all those who participated, especially the young people whom we honor as the Keepers of the Traditions and the Protectors of the Circle of Life," wrote Shirley Williams of the Lummi Shelangen Department. "We believe that by sharing experiences like this with the youth, they will learn and become Keepers of the Traditions and the Protectors of the Circle of LIfe. Knowledge and practice of the traditions of the Coast Salish People will help return humanity to a holistic balance which resonates in the Shelangen, the way of the ancestors."

To view the video, visit this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHROtbsczNE

[Submitted by Mike Vouri and Lee Taylor]


Air Resources Division
Guidance Now Available For Evaluating Visual Impact Assessments

So, a utility scale renewable energy project is knocking on your door… How can you tell what the visual impacts really are likely to be? Is the visual impact assessment that the proponent provided adequate?

The Air Resources Division within the Natural Resource Stewardship and Science Directorate is pleased to announce the release of the Guide to Evaluating Visual Impact Assessments for Renewable Energy Projects. This guidance document is designed to aid park resource managers in determining if analyses supporting renewable energy projects adequately address associated impacts to scenic views from parks, especially the adequacy of visual simulations. Depending on assumptions made, impacts to scenic views can be muted in simulations. The guide alerts users to key parameters to look for and summarizes the key components of a quality analysis.

The guide was prepared by Argonne National Laboratory under an interagency agreement between the Department of Energy and the NPS’s Air Resources Division. Staff from the division worked closely with Argonne in developing the guidance and obtained very helpful input from reviewers to enhance the value of the guidance to park resource managers.

The guidance includes a brief overview of federal permitting processes, a detailed discussion of the components of an impact assessment of a project, including the Affected Environment and Environmental Consequences required for NEPA,and a comprehensive guide to assessing the quality and accuracy of visual simulations. For a copy, go to https://irma.nps.gov/App/Reference/Profile/2214258

If you have any questions, please contact, Mark Meyer, Visual Resource Specialist, Air Resources Division, Natural Resource Stewardship and Science Directorate at 303-969-2818.

[Submitted by Mark Meyer, mark_e_meyer@nps.gov, 303-969-2818]


Heritage Preservation Assistance Programs
Recreation In National Heritage Areas: Something For Everyone

As we reflect on 30 years since the creation of the first National Heritage Area, let's celebrate recreational opportunities provided to our heritage area communities.

NHAs improve access to the cultural and natural resources they were designated to celebrate and protect. Granting access to recreational opportunities is important for public engagement and stewardship, which are essential to the mission of all NHAs. Last year alone the National Heritage Areas distributed over $3 million in grants for recreation projects and developed 1133 new miles of on and off road trails.

In Georgia, Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area completed a 30 mile hike-bike trail that connects historic, cultural and natural resources. Interactive maps enable trail visitors to map their route.  Plans are also underway in partnership with a local mountain biking group to investigate opportunities for appropriate low-impact mountain biking. 

The Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership and the Upper Housatonic NHA have collaborated with multiple stakeholders from Vermont, Massachusetts and Connecticut to design and develop the Western New England Greenway (WNEG). When complete, it will connect the East Coast Greenway with Quebec's route Verte, providing a contiguous 439-mile bike route between New York City and Montreal. CVNHP and UHNHA are using this project to connect historic and natural sites through their shared interpretive themes.

Trails wind through a variety of natural and urban environments, providing a comprehensive view of a region. Just as trails rely on partnerships within communities, they also serve to create and strengthen connections between communities. In 2013, the Delaware and Lehigh NHA added 13 miles to the Delaware and Lehigh Trail (D&L), constructed three trailheads, and completed an assessment of a larger Lehigh Valley Trail Network. The success of the D&L Trail prompted the Landmark Towns Project, which aims to bring people from the trail to nearby downtown areas.

Across the country, people enjoy National Heritage Areas as destinations for hiking, biking, paddling, walking and running. NHAs support tours and other events that help small towns, draw visitors, shoppers, and diners. Heritage Areas also offer school tours, camps, and other outdoor adventures that help our younger generation get moving and connect with the great outdoors in their own backyards.

Run, walk, bike or paddle in these areas:

  • Atchafalaya National Heritage Area,  LA - Canoe or kayak the Bayou Tech Paddling Trail[HMS1] , a 135-mile-long waterway of great cultural significance to Louisiana and the Atchafalaya NHA. 
  • Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor, PA -Take the Get Your Tail of the Trail [HMS2] wellness program challenge by running, walking or biking the 165-mile D&L Trail. 
  • Working with over 150 partners, Ohio and Erie Canalway National Heritage Area developed 85 miles of the planned 101 mile Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail. It attracts 2.5 million visitors annually, including those for their annual marathon and much more.  
  • Essex National Heritage Area, MA - Experience the sights and sounds of the Essex National Heritage Area during the TRAILS & SAILS: Two Weekends of Walks & Water through walks, guided hikes, sails, and other adventures. 
  • Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area, NY - Ramble through the Hudson River Valley and learn about the historic, cultural and natural resources. 
  • Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area, UT - Do you like cycling? Love old barns? Join the annual Barn Storming tour of Sanpete and Sevier Counties, Utah hosted by Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area and the Utah Heritage Foundation. 
  • Schuylkill River National Heritage Area, PA: Paddle the Schuylkill River on a one, two or seven day Sojourn in 2015. 
  • Wheeling National Heritage Area, WV - Ohio River  Valley residents can "Trek the Trail" in Wheeling National Heritage Area. 
  • Baltimore National Heritage Area - Stroll along the water in historic neighborhoods on Baltimore's Waterfront Promenade. Take a walking tour on Heritage Walk or any of the Star Spangled Banner Trails. 
  • Lackawanna Heritage Valley National Heritage Area, PA - The NHA developed the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail, part of a 70 mile trail. 
  • Discover fascinating stories and adventure to boot up north at the  Kenai Mountains - Turnagain Arm National Heritage Area  in Alaska. 

Find your heritage and engage with us. Help celebrate 30 years of partnerships. Go to @HHPreservItNPS  using #HeritageArea30

For more information on NHAs, visit http://www.nps.gov/heritageareas/.

[Submitted by Katie Durcan, Katie_Durcan@nps.gov, 202-354-2268]

 More Information...
Denver Service Center
Karl von Rosenberg Announces Retirement

After nearly 30 years of government service, 26 of those with NPS, Karl von Rosenberg has announced he will retire on September 30th.  Karl is currently a program manager in design and construction for the Denver Service Center.

After graduating from Texas A&M University in 1974, Karl began his career as a civil engineer with the Bureau of Reclamation in 1975.  He participated in Reclamation’s engineer training program and was then in the technical analysis section, where he worked primarily in the area of large scale computer modeling for structural and hydraulic analysis.

In early 1978, Karl joined DSC’s Alaska/Pacific Northwest/Western Team, which later became the Western Team.   He worked as a design engineer for water and wastewater systems at a number of western parks and monuments, including Death Valley, Grand Canyon, Sequoia, Yosemite, Craters of the Moon, Lehman Caves (now part of Great Basin), and Redwoods.

By the mid-1980s Karl was also working as an A/E manager on more varied and larger scale projects.  One of his most memorable was the directionally drilled water line at Grand Canyon that installed a line through the rock from the South Rim to a point near Indian Gardens, over 2,500 vertical feet below.  He also took two year assignment as on-site NPS representative for construction of the Wawona water and sewer system in Yosemite National Park.

In 1990, Karl became a project manager on DSC’s central team and worked on projects that included a new Visitor Center at San Antonio Missions NHP and the major upgrade to visitor facilities at Mount Rushmore NM.

Since late 2006, Karl’s primary assignment has been the Elwha River Restoration project, working initially as lead project manager and since 2009 as program manager for DSC.  The project has been a collaboration of a team of project managers, specialists, and contracting personnel from DSC, park and regional personnel, the DOI Solicitor's Office, other Federal and State agencies,  the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, Clallam County, and the City of Port Angeles. 

In November 2013, Karl received a Superior Service Award from the Department of the Interior for his outstanding contributions to the development, preservation, and protection of the resources of the NPS and his leadership and management of the Elwha River Restoration project. 

“I’ve just been one of many contributing to this great project, but it has been very rewarding to be a member of the team and to now see the dams completely out and the river running free,” Karl says.

Karl has recently had the chance to work again on the water system at Grand Canyon as well.

“Working for the NPS has been a wonderful combination of challenging and interesting work in beautiful and historic locations.  I appreciate the great people I’ve had the pleasure to work with on the many projects I’ve worked on over the years,” he continued.

In their retirement, Karl and his wife Molly plan to travel, enjoy the outdoors, and do some upgrades to their home in Golden, Colorado.  They also look forward to spending time with their three children: Charles in New York, Michelle in Oregon, and Laura in Colorado.  Karl can be reached at karlvonr@gmail.com or (303) 525-2279.

A celebration will be held in Karl’s honor at the NPS office in Lakewood, Colorado on Thursday, September 25th, from 2:30-3:30 and then continuing at Old Chicago for happy hour from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

[Submitted by Lindy Allen, lindy_allen@nps.gov, (303) 969-2588]


LOWE
Cindy Laurenza Says Farewell To The NPS

A varied career in the National Park Service at Lowell National Historical Park began for Cindy Laurenza in the spring of 1979 when she responded to an advertisement seeking applicants for the then-newly created park.

Starting at the park in May of 1979, Cindy filled a succession of positions, including park aid, park technician and clerk typist. A transition to work as a secretary/tools attendant in maintenance eventually led to her extended career involvement as grounds supervisor.

From 1987 to 2010, Cindy and the grounds crew kept the park open and safe throughout the year.  Maintaining the roads, grounds, sidewalks as well as the park’s flagship green space, Boarding House Park.

Cindy recently transitioned once again to administration to play a key role as the park’s business center manager assisting as the park’s liaison to personnel and procurement connections beyond the park.  Whatever her role, Cindy has seen, and been, part of the park’s growth, from the opening of the park visitor center, to the creation of the Boott Cotton Mills Museum and the rehabilitation of 67 Kirk Street as the park headquarters.  

During a recent interview when asked about her most memorable moments at the park, Cindy responded: “It could be Prince Charles’ visit in 1986, or when Senator Paul Tsongas announced his run for president of the United States from the stage at Boarding House Park in 1992.”

With Cindy’s broad engagement in the park across the years, her farewell gathering mirrored  the depth of her involvement. On Wednesday, August 27th, over 50 of Cindy’s past and present co-workers gathered to wish Cindy a fond farewell.  A family-style barbecue, the type which are synonymous with friends and good times, set the scene where numerous co-workers spoke from the heart on Cindy’s impact on them during their time together.

“I feel  very fortunate to have worked with a great bunch of people all these years.” said Cindy reflecting on her time at the park.  When asked about what’s next, Cindy said that there are a number of loose ends to address over the next several months, but come next spring, it will be time for a fresh start.
If you would like to keep in touch with Cindy, she can be reached at celaurenza@gmail.com.

[Submitted by Phil Lupsiewicz, Phil_Lupsiewicz@nps.gov, 978-275-1705]


CAREER OPPORTUNITIES



Office of Learning and Development
Training Instructors/Facilitators Sought

The WASO Learning and Development, Leadership Development Group is looking for instructors/facilitators for the Servicewide new supervisor development program  and new division chief leadership development program.   You must meet the criteria listed under each program in order to be considered.

New Supervisor Development Program (NSDP) – This blended learning program was developed collaboratively at the Department level with the Bureau of Land Management and the Fish and Wildlife Service. The NSDP is a suite of courses (both classroom based and distance learning) designed to give supervisors the knowledge and skills necessary to perform their jobs during the 12-month probationary period of their initial appointment. 

   

Supervisory Skills Workshop (SSW) - Residential Portion – The following are the requirement for instructors for this workshop:

  • Must be or have been a NPS supervisor, or must be or have been an instructor or teacher in the past
  • Must be at least a GS-11 or equivalent or above
  • Must have approval from supervisor and superintendent
  • Must attend one SSW session as an observer before serving as an instructor
  • Must be able to teach at least two to three sessions during the year

New Division Chief Leadership Development Program (NDCLDP) – The NDCLDP targets new division chiefs within their first two years of assignment. The focus is on enhancing a new division chief’s ability to be an effective member of a management team.  The program uses a blended-learning approach consisting of residential and distance-learning courses over a six-month period.  Participants are exposed to nine leadership competencies – systems thinking, accountability, team building, partnering, influencing/negotiating, human capital management, political savvy, and conflict management. The following are the requirements for instructors for this program:

  • Must be or have been an NPS division chief, or must be a subject matter expert in one of the leadership competencies identified above
  • Must be at least a GS-11 equivalent or above
  • Must be able to instruct at least two webinar sessions (approximately two hours in length) and/or instruct at the residential session (four to five days)
  • Must have approval from supervisor and superintendent

If you are interested in assisting with the above leadership development programs and meet the criteria specified above, please send a short description of your experience and supervisory approval to be considered. 

All travel for the Instructors/observers will be paid by the WASO Leadership Development Group.  The program manager will determine who the instructors will be for these Servicewide programs based on any nominations received. 

Please send your nomination to Katherine_Callaway@nps.gov no later than October 3rd. 

[Submitted by Katherine Callaway, Employee Development Specialist ]