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8WASHINGTON, DC -- Gary Moses from Glacier National Park in Montana is this year’s recipient of the Harry Yount National Park Ranger Award for excellence in the field of "rangering."
National Park Service Director Mary A. Bomar presented Moses with the peer nominated award at a Washington, D.C. ceremony on May 7. Named after the 19th century outdoorsman generally credited as the first park ranger, the prestigious Yount Award is presented annually by the NPS and made possible by the National Park Foundation through a generous gift from Unilever.
"Gary’s tremendous skill set, his inherit ability to lead, his deep-seated commitment to serving others, and his devotion to the National Park Service inspire all those around him," said Bomar. "Gary is truly a role model for other rangers. He has mastered all the essential components of rangering and has done it with grace, humility, and humor."
Moses, the Lake McDonald Sub-District ranger since 1991, has made countless contributions benefitting park visitors, employees, partners, and resources throughout his 24 year NPS career. He is a law enforcement officer, bear management coordinator, park medic, structural and wildfire firefighter, SCUBA diver, mountaineer, and college wildlife management instructor. He has extensive experience with special event and tactical teams (SETT), backcountry operations, concession relations, and search and rescues.
He is an internationally recognized expert in bear management and has led numerous responses to grizzly and black bear incidents. He is credited with saving the lives of two people in a near fatal mauling in 2005. His quick action, smooth composure, medical skill, and rescue ability ensured the survival of all involved in the incident, including the visitors and the sow grizzly and cubs.
Moses has delivered a baby, responded to a myriad of medical emergencies, coordinated helicopter and technical rescues, and organized mass casualty responses. His ability to remain calm under pressure even came in handy for his wedding which was crashed by the intense Yellowstone Fires of 1988. His wife Amy Vanderbilt, like him a Yellowstone employee at the time, recalls dime sized pieces of ash falling on and around the nomax clad wedding guests. About a month after the wedding, Gary was on the structural fire crew that saved the historic Old Faithful Inn from destruction.
In 1915, a NPS official said the park ranger corps was comprised of rugged, yet caring individuals, skilled in all manners of the outdoors. Today, Gary Moses fits this description and maintains the proud tradition of the competent and courteous park ranger.
The National Park Foundation, chartered by Congress in 1967, strengthens the enduring connection between the American people and their national parks by raising private funds, making strategic grants, creating innovative partnerships and increasing public awareness. In the past seven years, NPF has contributed more than $134 million in grants and program support to national parks across the country.
The National Park Service preserves the natural and cultural resources and values of 391 units of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. These national treasures cover more than 84 million acres in every state (except Delaware), the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The NPS also manages a variety of programs in cooperation with multiple partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.