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Mike Reynolds has been named as the new superintendent of Death Valley National Park, located in eastern California and western Nevada. He replaces Kathy Billings who recently retired. Reynolds will begin his new assignment on May 31, 2015, managing a staff of 125 full-time employees and an annual budget of approximately $9 million.
"Mike is an experienced leader with the National Park Service, and we know his skills, experience, and passion for Death Valley make him a great fit for Death Valley National Park," said Pacific West Regional Director Chris Lehnertz."I am delighted to keep him in our region and know that park staff, partners, and community members will enjoy working with him."
Reynolds most recently served as superintendent of Lava Beds National Monument and the Tule Lake Unit of World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, both located in northeastern California.He has worked with both the local and Japanese American communities to develop the future of the new Tule Lake Unit.A general management plan is nearing its final stages.Reynolds will indirectly continue his affiliation with the story of Japanese American incarceration through Death Valley's close connection to Manzanar National Historic Site.
"I am excited by the chance to further the NPS mission at Death Valley and humbled by the opportunity to serve the visitors, resources, and staff at the park," said Mike Reynolds."Death Valley is a world class resource and I look forward to the opportunity to live and work there again."
Reynolds has worked for the National Park Service for more than 18 years and has served at Big Bend, Great Smoky Mountains, Death Valley, and Yellowstone National Parks.He also spent three and a half years as superintendent at the National Park of American Samoa.Reynolds has a BS in Math and Business Operations from Indiana University and an MS in Outdoor Recreation from Arizona State University. Reynolds will relocate to Death Valley along with his partner, Sarah Bone, and his Samoan cat named Tele.As avid outdoor enthusiasts, they look forward to running, hiking, and backpacking throughout the beautiful and wild park.