The Morning Report

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

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Southeast Arizona Group
Seriously Ill Woman Rescued

On April 20th, Chiricahua National Monument rangers were cleaning the park horse stable just outside the park boundary when a man approached them, seeking assistance.

The man, who in his mid-30s, had carried his wife nearly a mile to Highway 181 to seek help for a medical emergency. Rangers treated the 27-year-old woman, who was experiencing signs and symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis. The couple had crossed the US/Mexico border illegally and had been walking for more than two weeks. Neither the husband nor the wife had eaten in more than a week.

Rangers requested assistance from the US Border Patrol and Cochise County EMS.  An ambulance was dispatched from Pearce/Sunsites EMS. Based on the woman’s unstable condition and her altered mental status, paramedics responding by ambulance requested a life flight helicopter.

Due to one of the rangers Spanish language proficiency, rangers were able to rapidly treat the woman and provide information to responding agencies. She was admitted to a local hospital.

[Submitted by Chief Ranger’s Office]


Environmental Quality Division
Workforce, Relevancy and Inclusion
CIRCLE Members Hold First Annual Meeting

The Council for Indigenous Relevancy, Communication, Leadership, and Excellence (CIRCLE) was created in 2013 to enhance the National Park Service’s understanding of American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian issues specifically as it relates to hiring, retention, and improved visibility throughout the NPS. 

“CIRCLE provides a continued stewardship opportunity to indigenous NPS employees and visitors,” said Alisha Deegan, a founding member of CIRCLE. “This stewardship transcends the generations and provides a direct link to the lands that our ancestors hunted, lived, and considered sacred.”

After a year of working over phone and email, the CIRCLE leadership committee held its first meeting in Denver over three days in late March. The meeting, facilitated by Krista Muddle, regional partnership coordinator, resulted in a two year strategic plan to address hiring and retention, the current deficit in training regarding working with American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians and a communication strategy. 

The committee also met with Intermountain Regional Director Sue Masica, outgoing Associate Director for Workforce, Relevancy and Inclusion David Vela, and Associate Director Michael Reynolds. 

A highlight of the meeting was the election of Otis Halfmoon, tribal liaison for National Trails Intermountain Region as CIRCLE’s chair, and Alisha Deegan, facility operations specialist at Mount Rushmore National Memorial, as vice chair. 

One of the main issues addressed was the need to highlight the important work CIRCLE is already doing and promote the ways CIRCLE can assist the National Park Service. 

 “To our indigenous people, these parks are alive and extremely meaningful to the present generations and generations not yet born,” said Halfmoon. “We plan to dialogue with all aspects of the National Park Service, support on-going centennial planning efforts and always keep Director Jarvis’ ‘Call to Action’ in the forefront of our discussions.” 

Since last November, members have participated in calls with a number of divisions and programs, including youth programs, interpretation and education, CESU coordinators, business services, and various regional meetings regarding programming and services and identifying ways to work together to ensure that Native American concerns are identified and addressed.  CIRCLE intends to use social media, InsideNPS and an annual webinar to share progress and invite the broader NPS to participate in their work.

Over the next few months, CIRCLE members will be sharing the results of the meeting with their leadership and looking for ways to promote the group. 

“These are exciting times for all of us in the NPS, with the centennial fast approaching and with the vision and commitment of our NPS leadership to effect bold and pono (righteous) actions on many fronts, including the establishment of CIRCLE,” said member Daniel Kawaiaea.  “For many of us who have direct association with our nation’s crown jewels, we know what we do for the NPS is far beyond just a job, but an inherent kuleana (responsibility) to ho’omau (carry on) the legacy of our ancestors.”

[Submitted by Sangita Chari]

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Keweenaw National Historical Park (MI)
Keweenaw And Isle Royale Sponsor Park Break Session

Keweenaw National Historical Park and Isle Royale National Park, along with Michigan Technological University’s Industrial Archaeology program, held a productive joint Park Break session about archaeological resources on the week of April 7th.

The Park Break program is organized by the National Park Service in conjunction with the George Wright Society and supports research in and management of parks, protected areas, and cultural sites. It gives graduate students an opportunity to work with park staff to address a research question and in the process gain experience in the day-to-day operations of a public land management agency.

The Keweenaw Peninsula and Isle Royale share the same geology and copper-rich bedrock and consequently supported a similar mining prehistory and history, making a joint project beneficial to interpretation and resource management divisions at both parks.

Eight graduate students from around the country—from California State-Chico to the University of Maryland—spent the week tackling one question: How can we increase understanding of, and appreciation for, the nationally significant prehistoric and historic archaeological resources related to prehistoric and historic copper mining within the Keweenaw Peninsula and on Isle Royale? 

Classroom sessions and discussions with cultural resource and interpretation staff were complemented by field trips—several on snowshoes—to a number of historic sites throughout the Keweenaw Peninsula. One of the highlights was a snowshoe tour of the Cliff Mine, which in 1849 became the first Keweenaw copper mine to pay a dividend; today it is the site of an archaeological field school hosted by Michigan Tech’s Industrial Archaeology program.

By the end of the week, the students had developed immediate, short, and long-term goals for the parks to implement and had identified many activities to engage visitors of all ages. The eight students collectively offered a menu of innovative suggestions, scaled from immediate, no-cost actions to more elaborate programs.

The result is that Keweenaw NHP and Isle Royale NP now have the elements of a plan to raise community awareness of the value of archaeological resources: to lift the public’s perception of these resources from something to be scavenged with a metal detector to important features of the nationally significant story of copper on the Keweenaw.

The collaborative network that already exists between the NPS and its partners—including the Keweenaw Heritage Sites and Michigan Tech—was seen as a distinct advantage to successfully addressing these goals.

"The Park Break program at Keweenaw NHP was very successful and I want to commend all involved in the planning and implementation,” said Superintendent Mike Pflaum. “Our staff and partners dedicated themselves to this valuable program, and the participants from across the country had a great park immersion experience. The George Wright Society's support was critical.”

“The products of the program will be utilized in our interpretative and educational programs for years to come. Perhaps most lasting, we now have eight passionate new advocates for the resources and stories of the Keweenaw."

[Submitted by Thomas M. Baker]

United States Park Police
Officers Recognized For K-9 School Development Efforts

Park Police Captain Charles Guddemi was presented with a certificate of appreciation for his outstanding work and dedication for participation in the 2012 assessment that led to the K-9 Narcotics Detection Training School program.

Other award recipients include Lieutenant Robert Lachance, Sergeant Jeffrey Quinn and Officer Jeffrey Dougherty who received certificates of appreciation recognizing their dedication for seeing the training school through to success.

[Submitted by Sergeant Lelani Woods, Public Information Officer]

Yosemite National Park (CA)
Park Mentoring Program Enters Second Year

Yosemite National Park recently kicked off the second year of its mentorship program with 22 participants representing all eight park divisions.

Colleen Osborne, Intermountain Region’s training manager, facilitated the program orientation with the support of Jana Friesen McCabe from the park’s public involvement and outreach office.

The Yosemite mentoring program was developed in response to a 2012 cultural value survey of NPS employees at the park, where respondents identified coaching and mentoring as an extremely valuable aspect of park culture. The mentor program was subsequently identified as a park priority in Yosemite’s 2020 strategic vision, as an important step towards employee development and improved morale and enrichment, and as a key component of its leadership campus.

Common development goals identified by Yosemite mentees include learning management and leadership skills, team building, public speaking, achieving work/life balance, time management, supervisorial skills, and more technical and job-specific skills.

According to Osborne, Yosemite’s mentoring program is unique in the NPS due to the park’s large and diverse workforce and the ability for mentors and mentees to work closely and on the ground together. Her work with other mentor programs in the region often involves mentors and mentees who work in different parks.

The first group of mentors and mentees will complete their program in July. Many of the relationships established in the program will continue in a more informal manner and will have served as important first steps towards identifying and achieving development goals as well as invaluable networking opportunities.

According to Tom Medema, a mentor and Yosemite’s chief of interpretation and education, the benefits go both ways. Medema views mentorship as “a mutual exchange of ideas between colleagues…and an opportunity for both individuals to grow and reach their potential by enhancing emotional intelligence, self-awareness, and knowledge base.”  

[Submitted by Rebecca Cremeen, Public Involvement and Outreach]

President William Jefferson Clinton Birthplace Home National Historic Site (AR)
Park Hosts Third Annual Film Festival

President William Jefferson Clinton Birthplace Home National Historic Site hosted its third annual Hope for Humanity Film Festival between April 10th and April 12th.

This year’s festival featured blockbuster hit “The Butler,” directed by Lee Daniels. The film chronicles the life of Cecil Gaines, played by Forrest Whitaker, a butler who broke through racial barriers while serving numerous presidents in the White House.

Gaines’ wife Gloria, played by Oprah Winfrey, focuses on the raising of her two boys, one in the military and one eventually ending up in politics after landing in jail numerous times for protesting bigoted laws in the South.

Throughout the film many moments from the civil rights movement are highlighted, including a desegregation of a high school in Little Rock, Arkansas. Minnijean Brown Trickey is one the of the Little Rock Nine, the first nine African American students to enter a formally all white Central High School despite Governor Faubus use of the Arkansas National Guard to block the admittance of the nine students.  Minnijean returned to her home state to attend this year’s festival and engaged participants in a Q & A after the films screening.

Participants were moved by Minnijean’s charge to stop passing the burden of our generation onto our children.

“It was the kids who ignited the change in many of the civil rights movements,” she said. “We (the nine) volunteered and then broke the news to our parents.’ She inspired the youth in the audience by quoting Mahatma Gandhi: “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”

Also screened in the festival’s line up was “The Big Shootout,” which tackles the 1969 Arkansas Razorback and Texas Longhorn game that rocked the nation. During the 100th anniversary of collegiate football, President Richard Nixon attended the game in a frigid Fayetteville, Arkansas, and bestowed the title of “best college football team” on the Texas Longhorns after a grueling and very close game.

Set against a backdrop of civil unrest, the Vietnam War, the civil rights movement ongoing, a protest was inevitable. Players from both sides joined the screening and gave greater insight to what these young boys were thinking as the game transpired.

“Much more than football made us men,” said Bruce James, one of the Razorback players.

The festival also featured “Thank You Mr. President,” a documentary based on Helen Thomas, one of the first and longest lasting female members of the White House press corps, and “Miss Representation,” a film that interviews powerful women from media and politics and sheds light on how the perception of women conveyed by the media can be damaging to young girls.

The park partnered with the University of Arkansas Community College at Hope and Arkansas Educational Television Network, which provided an exciting hands-on workshop on documentary film making.

[Submitted by Christian Davis]

George Washington Birthplace National Monument (VA)
Annual Potomac River Cleanup Held

On April 5th, a group of 22 volunteers joined park staff in the annual Potomac River Watershed Cleanup. 

The cleanup was sponsored by the Alice Ferguson Foundation, whose mission is to promote the environmental sustainability of the watershed.  The park group was among thousands of volunteers throughout the region who picked up trash that day along the Potomac and its tributaries. 

Volunteers covered the park’s shoreline on foot and by canoe, removing 25 bags of trash as well as tires, lumber and buoys. The most interesting finds of the day included a plastic dinosaur and a 1977 Virginia license plate. 

“We’re delighted to have this opportunity to spend time with our friends and neighbors while accomplishing such worthwhile work,” said Superintendent Melissa Cobern. “The watershed is a resource for which we all care a great deal and it’s wonderful to see all these folks turn out in support of it.”  

The Alice Ferguson Foundation reported that 4,848 volunteers removed over 100 tons of trash from the Potomac River watershed during the event.

[Submitted by Wayne Rose]


Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore (IN)
GS-0499-4 Student Trainee (Biological Science Technician)

Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is recruiting for a student trainee (biological science technician).  The position is not to exceed one year. The announcement is open only to current NPS student interns. 

Click on the link below to go to the job announcement and to apply online.  This announcement closes on April 28th.

For information about the position, please contact Dan Mason at (219) 395-1553.  For information about how to apply, please contact HR Specialist Gail Purifoy at (330) 657-2370 X311.
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