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Contact: Dena Matteson, 573-323-8028
OMAHA –Larry Johnson, a 32-year veteran of the National Park Service (NPS), has been selected as the new Superintendent of Ozark National Scenic Riverways (Riverways). Johnson is the Superintendent of Jewel Cave National Monument in South Dakota, and since January, 2015, has been on a detail assignment to the Riverways as Acting Superintendent.He begins his new assignment in mid-June.
"Larry has a wealth of experience that he brings to this position, stated Midwest Regional Director Cam Sholly.He served as the Chief Ranger at the park earlier in his career, and his familiarity with the community, the issues and the staff will be an asset. He is assuming leadership at an important time as the park is engaging the community in ongoing planning efforts. Larry's experience in collaboration and partnerships will serve the park well."
Johnson said, "It's a privilege and an honor to be able to return to Ozark Riverways as the Superintendent.I look forward to working with the employees and communities as we partner to make the park the best it can be."
Johnson holds a Bachelor's Degree in Outdoor Recreation Resource Management from Iowa State University, and completed Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government Executive Education Program, the NPS New Superintendent Academy, and the National Parks Institute. A native of Des Moines, Iowa, he began his NPS career at Herbert Hoover National Historic Site as a Supervisory Park Ranger. He has also worked as a District Ranger at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, Yellowstone National Park, and Voyageurs National Park where he earned the Midwest Region's Harry Yount Award for excellence in rangering.He served as the Chief Ranger at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.He also served as Acting Deputy Superintendent at Badlands National Park.
Johnson and his wife, Jan, a writer and artist, enjoy hiking and bicycling, visiting historic sites, and researching family history.
Ozark National Scenic Riverways was created by an act of Congress on August 24, 1964 to protect 134 miles of the Current and Jacks Fork Rivers in the Ozark Highlands of southeastern Missouri.The clean, clear waters of these two beautiful rivers provide excellent opportunities for johnboating, canoeing, swimming, fishing, and tubing.Hiking, hunting and horseback riding are also enjoyed in the park.In his new role, Johnson will manage a workforce of approximately 92 employees and an annual operating budget of more than $6.5 million.