Rich Eshenaur Receives Harry Yount Award
Rich Eshenaur, park ranger at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, received this year’s Midwest Regional Harry Yount Award. The award, named after the first ranger to work at Yellowstone National Park, is considered the hallmark of recognition honors for National Park Service rangers.
Eshenaur was nominated for his exemplary leadership of the Region’s Special Event and Tactical Team (SETT). The team is made up of 11 highly-trained rangers from regional parks that can be deployed to any National Park in the country where there is a crisis or special need. Deployments can last up to a month and have included Hurricane Katrina relief at Everglades and Big Cypress National Parks, crowd control during large demonstrations in Washington D.C. and St. Louis, and Secret Service assistance with protecting the President at Mount Rushmore and Brown vs. Board of Education National Historic Site. Many of the assignments occurred following the attacks of 9/11 and ranged from providing extra patrols at Hoover Dam to protecting the Department of the Interior building.
Ranger Eshenaur has worked for the National Park Service since 1993 and has been stationed at the National Lakeshore and Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio. His work on SETT began in 1995 and he earned the team leader position in 2001. It was his exemplary leadership of the team that resulted in his peer nomination for the Yount Award. Jackie Henmann, Regional Law Enforcement Specialist, noted, “Rich is consistently thinking of creative solutions to improve the SETT operation and has proven to be unflappable in the most stressful situations and ready to respond at a moment’s notice to the needs of the Service.”
In the announcement of the award, Regional Director Ernest Quintana wrote, “Ranger Eshenaur reveals character traits desirable in all rangers through his demonstrated attitude of service to visitors, co-workers, Departmental personnel, and hurricane victims…the Midwest Region takes pride in how well he represents the National Park Service to others during his professional interactions as team leader.”
For more information on this award or the law enforcement operations at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, call the Chief Ranger’s Office at 219-926-7561, ext. 300.