News Release

National Park Service Applauds President Obama’s Diversity Commitment and Outlines Efforts to Engage All Americans in Their National Parks

House and barn at Harriet Tubman National Historical Park
Harriet Tubman National Historical Park in New York is one of the newest additions to the National Park Service.

NPS Photo

News Release Date: January 13, 2017

Contact: Tom Crosson, 202-208-6843

WASHINGTON – The National Park Service shares President Obama’s enthusiasm for promoting diversity and inclusion in national parks and other public lands announced in yesterday’s Presidential Memorandum on Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in Our National Parks, National Forests, and Other Public Lands and Waters. In collaboration with partners and organizations nationwide, the National Park Service used its 2016 centennial celebration to invite all Americans to experience their national parks. Throughout our centennial year, we challenged ourselves to consider how we can ensure that every American feels welcome, valued and part of the American stories we tell in these special places. 

Thanks to President Obama’s national monument designations, the National Park System tells a more inclusive and diverse story of America through the places in our care. Recent additions to the National Park System including Stonewall National MonumentBelmont-Paul Women’s Equality National MonumentCharles Young Buffalo Soldiers National MonumentPullman National MonumentCésar A. Chávez National Monument, and Honouliuli National Monument, reflect a commitment to representing the diversity of our great nation. 

This week, the National Park Service is especially proud to welcome to our system four new parks that continue that commitment to telling the nation’s diverse stories through the Harriet Tubman National Historical Park, Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument, Freedom Riders National Monument, and Reconstruction Era National Monument. These significant sites will help the National Park Service highlight our country’s struggles and advancements from the Reconstruction area through the civil rights movement of the 20th century. 

Through our heritage initiatives on diverse and inclusive history, the National Park Service is proud to support scholarship and research that are helping our parks and communities throughout the country tell their stories and preserve their special places, creating a more inclusive and complex narrative of our shared national experiences.

The National Park Service realizes that a diverse, talented workforce will help ensure that we are better prepared to take on the challenges of our second century.  In partnership with the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps, the National Park Service is providing work and training opportunities to more than 100,000 young people and veterans. Partners including Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic Access Foundation, the Student Conservation Association, Southwest Conservation Corps, Greening Youth Foundation, and many others are collaborating to ensure internships, seasonal jobs, and other programs reach diverse youth who may not have considered a career in the National Park Service. Through a blend of community engagement strategies, work and volunteer experiences, hiring authorities and a dedication to fostering an inclusive work culture, the National Park Service is committed to harnessing the promise of America’s diversity.  

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at, on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

Last updated: February 1, 2017