Exercising the Authority of Director for the National Park Service
As Deputy Director, Dan Smith plays an essential role in leading the National Park Service employees who protect, preserve, and share America's 417 national parks with the American people and who manage the NPS programs that help communities across the nation preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities.
Smith served as superintendent of Colonial National Historical Park from 2004 to 2015, where he managed a 23-mile parkway and three historic sites, including the first permanent British colony in America at Jamestown and the site of the 1781 Revolutionary War victory of General George Washington over British General Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown. During his tenure at the park, Smith oversaw the completion of a new visitor center and a new research center at Jamestown in preparation for the 400th anniversary commemoration of the Jamestown settlement in 2007.
Smith also served previously as Special Assistant to the National Park Service Director and Assistant Director of Legislative and Congressional Affairs. He also served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the Department of the Interior and was responsible for oversight of the multi-billion dollar budgets and programs of the National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Smith also worked at the General Services Administration for ten years.
In addition to Mr. Smith’s Executive Branch service, he has extensive experience in the Legislative Branch as a staff member for a U.S. senator, a congressman, and two congressional committees.
Smith was born in Maine. A Vietnam War veteran, Smith served in the U.S. Army’s 4th Infantry. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Master of Science in Recreation Administration from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He is also an Eagle Scout.