Our Mission

The National Park Service preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The National Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.

Explore general legislation and other laws relating to the National Park Service.

Our Employees

Approximately 20,000 strong, the uncommon men and women of the National Park Service share a common trait: a passion for caring for the nation's special places and sharing their stories.

How We Are Organized

The National Park Service is a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Interior and is led by a Director nominated by the US President and confirmed by the US Senate. The Director is supported by senior executives who manage national programs, policy, and budget in the Washington, DC, headquarters and seven regional directors responsible for national park management and program implementation.

Map of the United States showing National Park Service regions and national parks

View a larger version of the map showing national parks within the Department of the Interior's Unified Regions (1.2MB JPG) and learn more about the Unified Interior Regions.

Our Official Emblem

The National Park Service arrowhead was authorized as our official emblem in 1951. The components of the arrowhead may have been inspired by key attributes of the National Park System, with the sequoia tree and bison representing vegetation and wildlife, the mountains and water representing scenic and recreational values, and the arrowhead itself representing historical and archeological values. A history of the arrowhead and other elements of NPS visual design is available. The arrowhead is also the registered service mark of the agency (number 4706627), protected by the trademark laws of the United States. The National Park Service allows limited use of the NPS arrowhead when doing so contributes to our work.

Learn how to request permission to use the arrowhead.

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Last updated: October 20, 2023