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David "Dave" Uberuaga (You burr ah gah) will serve as acting superintendent of Yosemite National Park, Calif, beginning January 4, 2009. He arrives at the park as Superintendent Mike Tollefson retires from federal service.
Uberuaga, a 24-year veteran of the National Park Service (NPS) is the current superintendent of Mount Rainier National Park, Wash. He will move to Yosemite Valley and assume Tollefson’s place until the next superintendent for the park is selected by Regional Director Jonathan B. Jarvis and the Director of the NPS.
While Uberuaga is stationed in California, his deputy, Randy King, will serve as superintendent of Mount Rainier National Park.
"I have enormous confidence in Dave," Jarvis said in making the appointment. "Dave and Mike have served together on leadership councils within the NPS and their relationship ensures a smooth transition."
Among the challenges Uberuaga has worked on this year at Mount Rainier is the rehabilitation of the historic Paradise Inn and completion of a new park visitor center also at Paradise. He will be following Tollefson who has shepherded the rehabilitation of Yosemite Falls and Tunnel View.
"It will be difficult to fill Mike’s shoes," Uberuaga said. "He retires having achieved tremendous success and a solid relation with the community, and it will be a pleasure to work collaboratively with him as he assumes the position of President of the Yosemite Fund."
The selection of a permanent superintendent at Yosemite will take several months. The superintendent is a Senior Executive Service (SES) position, the highest career level in the federal government. The rigorous application process is open to SES qualified individuals within the NPS.
"Dave’s a solid manager," Tollefson said. "I can’t think of a better way to start my new position with the Yosemite Fund then by working with him."