The Morning Report

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Recent Editions  


Independence National Historical Park (PA)
Visitor Saved Through Effective Use Of AED, CPR

Seasonal protection ranger Nicolas Gannon saw a visitor at the corner of Chestnut and 6th Street who was exhibiting the signs of a person under the influence of alcohol last Friday morning. 

Upon making contact with the visitor, Gannon immediately determined that he was actually in medical distress.  He called dispatch, asked for assistance, and was soon joined by rangers Eric "Max" Drawert, Rosileen Feriloli, Derik Pinsonneault and Graeme Morris. 

As Drawert, who is also an EMT, was medically assessing the man, he went into cardiac arrest.  Drawert and Gannon administered CPR and utilized a defibrillator until paramedics arrived on scene.  The visitor was then taken to a local hospital for further evaluation and treatment.

[Submitted by Trouper Snow, Chief of Operations]


Jefferson National Expansion Memorial (MO)
Park Hosts CityArchRiver 2015 Groundbreaking

The National Park Service officially broke ground on what will be the renovated Jefferson National Expansion Memorial grounds under the Gateway Arch in a ceremony held on Thursday, September 25th.

The groundbreaking ceremony marked the start of the NPS phases of the larger CityArchRiver 2015 project.  The CityArchRiver 2015 project is a $380 million transformational project that will enhance the national park and nearby downtown and riverfront experiences for all visitors.

Speakers at the ceremony included:

  • Mayor Francis Slay, City of St. Louis;
  • Patty Trap, Acting Midwest Regional Director;
  • Stephanie Toothman, Associate Director for Cultural Resources and Science;
  • Sam Whittington, Director, Denver Service Center;
  • Tom Bradley, Superintendent;
  • Maggie Hales, Executive Director, CityArchRiver 2015 Foundation; and
  • Susan Trautman, Executive Director, Great Rivers Greenway. 

All speakers highlighted the outstanding partnerships that have made this project a success to date.  Toothman also cited the importance of protecting and preserving the contributing features of the cultural landscape of the Gateway Arch grounds, a National Historic Landmark.
 More Information...
Resource Information Services Division
New NPS Library Resource Information Service Launched

The NPS Library Program is pleased to announce the release of the National Park Service Library Resource Information Service application (NPS LIBRIS).  NPS LIBRIS provides a single central portal for researchers (NPS, partner, and public) to efficiently discover library and related resources pertaining to NPS, replacing the legacy NPS Library Information Center (‘classic’ site) on 

The NPS LIBRIS flagship resource is the NPS Library Catalog, replacing and extending the functionality of the NPS Voyager system, with interfaces to Google Books, LibraryThing, WorldCat, Endnote (free basic Web version) and social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and nearly 300 more through AddThis).

As NPS LIBRIS is a vendor-hosted, Cloud-based, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution, performance is continuously monitored and ensured by the vendor.  Researchers will also benefit from enhancements installed transparently on a monthly basis with minimal impact to service.   Users may directly access the researcher portal at: (short URL pending).  Or, click ‘search’ under the ‘nps library catalog’ menu on the ‘classic’ site at and an interim page will lead to the new portal (searching ‘library’ on points to the ‘classic site’ – an update is pending).

The NPS LIBRIS catalog search interface has built-in tips and further guidance is provided by clicking ‘Library info’ under ‘Useful links’ on the navigation menu at:

To limit search results to a particular library and/or collection, select the appropriate ‘Location’ and/or ‘Collection’ picklist term(s) using the search limits option.  Orientation materials highlighting key areas and functions of the NPS LIBRIS researcher portal are planned.  In the interim, users will easily learn the basics (and more) by exploring navigation, reviewing search tips, and trying out searches and features.  

Training of library personnel in use of the Cataloging Module is tentatively scheduled to begin in mid-November.  Webinars will be repeated two to three times per month on a continuing basis, with associated user aids and NPS LIBRIS staff portal login credentials provided following course completion.  

Training and user support will be coordinated via the NPS Library Program’s Google sites.   Direct requests to be added to the library mailing list for receiving notices and updates to:  

[Submitted by Amalin Ferguson, Library Program Manager]

Climate Change Response Program
Proposals Sought For Climate Change Internship Projects

Calling all parks and programs, NPS-wide…

Do you need innovative ideas and tools to help you manage resources in a changing climate, or to communicate with the public about the impacts of climate change? Are you committed to mentoring young adults and helping ensure they are prepared to enter the NPS workforce with the skills and experience that confronting climate change demands?

If so, please submit a proposal for an internship project that will engage a talented undergraduate or graduate student in meeting a high-priority need in your park or program.

The Climate Change Response Program (CCRP) is now accepting proposals for rigorous climate change internship projects to be conducted in the summer of 2015. Proposals must be received by October 31, 2014, 5:00 pm ET.

The George Melendez Wright Initiative for Young Leaders in Climate Change (YLCC) is a new internship program funded by the CCRP. Students enrolled in undergraduate or graduate programs will work in parks or program offices in paid 12-week internship positions related to climate change. The interns will apply climate change knowledge to real problems and needs, gain valuable work experience, and develop leadership skills. The projects will be rigorous and complex, allow significant autonomy, and yield clearly-defined products. The NPS supervisor will provide significant leadership development opportunities and mentoring, as well as certification of the intern’s successful completion of the work. Interns who complete their work successfully will be eligible to be hired noncompetitively into federal jobs in the NPS and other DOI bureaus once they meet the requirements of their undergraduate or graduate degree programs.

You can propose a project that focuses on natural, cultural, or historic resources, park infrastructure, or interpretation and education. Your project must be in one or more of the following broad categories:  1) Resource conservation & adaptation; 2) Climate effects monitoring; 3) Facilities adaptation; 4) Policy development; 5) Sustainable operations / mitigation; 6) Communication, interpretation, or education.

Applications must be submitted via this Google Form (this form is best viewed in Google Chrome):

Further details about the program, including rating criteria and other guidance, are available on this Google Document (this document is best viewed in Google Chrome):


For information, contact Tim Watkins, NPS Climate Change Response Program. 202-513-7189

[Submitted by Tim Watkins,, 202-513-7189]

Northeast Region
Shenandoah Engages Citizen Scientists In Mercury Study

Shenandoah National Park has joined in a nationwide study to sample mercury levels in national parks in an effort to identify threats to natural resources.

This national project engages local citizen scientists to collect dragonfly larvae from distinct sampling sites in order to allow for comparison between parks and to provide baseline data on the spatial distribution of mercury contamination in national parks.  To date, more than 300 citizen scientists have contributed over 1,800 hours towards the National Park Service-wide study.

In late August, Shenandoah National Park staff were joined by local volunteers and researchers from the University of Virginia (UVA) to collect data on the mercury levels in dragonfly larvae at Piney River in the park’s north district and Staunton River in the park’s central district. The University of Maine will analyze the samples and results will be compared to data from participating NPS units across the nation.  Other project partners include the U.S. Geological Survey, The Schoodic Institute, and the NPS Air Resources Division.

Dr. Ami Riscassi of UVA explains the project: “Researchers are still trying to understand the fundamental drivers of mercury deposition and transport, and the Shenandoah National Park is the ideal place to do this. In this higher elevation, atmospheric mercury can be stored in the soils and potentially be a long-term source of mercury to downstream environments. Here at the top of the watershed, we are the first stop to understanding how changes in atmospheric mercury are going to affect water resources at the park and downstream.”

The sampling procedure involves collecting dragonfly larvae from the bottom of rivers or lakes with nets. As dragonflies spend up to five years of their lives in larval form, they have years to eat and accumulate mercury as they grow and develop.  Dragonflies are predators that eat a lot of other insects, placing them relatively high in the food chain. For these reasons, dragonfly larvae build up higher levels of mercury than other water-dwelling insects.

Dragonfly larvae is a food source for many types of fish that then accumulate more mercury, and are then in-turn consumed by mammals, birds, and humans, posing an even greater threat to health. Because larvae are much easier to sample than fish, they provide an excellent source of information on the levels of mercury contamination in an area.

Mercury contamination in a remote national park environment often comes from atmospheric deposits from coal-burning power plants. Studying dragonfly larvae in Shenandoah National Park is an important first step in understanding the extent of mercury contamination in this portion of the Blue Ridge and how it compares to contamination in other national parks.

“Many thanks to all our local and national partners for getting this program started at Shenandoah National Park!” said Jalyn Cummings, Air & Water Program Manager at Shenandoah National Park.  “I'm hoping this will be just the first in many years of mercury monitoring for Shenandoah.”

This sampling activity meets one of the goals the National Park Services (NPS) has set for the years leading up to our 100th Anniversary. The “Call to Action” ( rallies all employees and park partners to advance a shared vision of the NPS as it moves into the second century of stewardship of national park lands.  

[Submitted by Karen Beck-Herzog,, 540-999-3500 ext. 3300]


Death Valley National Park (CA)
GL-0025-9 Protection Ranger (Lateral)

Death Valley National Park is seeking candidates for a protection ranger position.

This position requires a current Level I or Level II NPS law enforcement commission.  Permanent change in station (PCS) funding is authorized for this position.

The park  has an active and complex law enforcement and emergency services program. Rangers are responsible for a full range of duties, including frontcountry and backcountry law enforcement, marijuana interdiction, EMS, structural fire, wildland fire, and SAR. The ranger selected will be assigned a take-home vehicle, will work a 5/4/9 schedule, and will have the opportunity for overnight patrols in the backcountry. Applicants must possess strong law enforcement and EMS skills. Current National Registry EMT certification is required.

Death Valley consists of 3.4 million acres and is the largest NPS managed wilderness outside of Alaska. The park is an environment of extremes, with elevations ranging from -282 to 11,040 feet and temperatures from 0 to 130 F. While Death Valley is known for its high temperatures, dunes, and dry saline lakebeds, 70% of the park is above 3,000 feet and is home to piñon and juniper forests and bristlecone pines.

Death Valley offers recreational opportunities that include backpacking, hiking, running, cycling, and canyoneering. World class rock climbing and mountaineering routes are found to the west of park in the Sierra Nevada (two hours distant).  

This position is designated for required occupancy in the Cow Creek developed area. Basic commodities and dining opportunities are found three miles away at Furnace Creek. For shopping and entertainment opportunities, Pahrump, Nevada, and Las Vegas, Nevada, are reasonably close – one hour and two hours away, respectively. 

If you have additional questions regarding the duties of the position, please contact Supervisory Park Ranger (Protection) J.D. Updegraff at (760) 786-3293, or

Interested candidates must submit the following (you will not be considered if you do not provide all of the items requested):

  • Resume
  • A copy of your most recent performance appraisal
  • A current SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action
  • A copy of your NPS Law Enforcement Commission
  • A copy of your current Red Card
  • A copy of your current National Registry Emergency Medical Technician Certification

Email your application package to Human Resources Specialist Cathy Tittnich at no later than Friday, October 17th.

Pacific West Region
GS-0301-12/13 Regional Centennial Program Coordinator

Pacific West Regional Office is seeking applicants interested in a full-time temporary detail or promotion for a two-year period to serve as the region’s NPS centennial program coordinator. At the end of this temporary assignment, the selectee will return to his or her regular duties. The person selected for this position may be located in any Pacific West Region location; however, a duty location of Seattle or San Francisco is preferred. 

The person selected will serve as the region's coordinator for the NPS 2016 centennial celebration and will be responsible for developing, coordinating, planning, and executing a successful centennial program within Pacific West Region.  He/she will be responsible for:

  • Providing planning support, coordination, and information sharing on the National Park Service centennial to all parks and offices in the region.
  • Developing a strategy to help align centennial efforts for parks and programs across the region, including recommending priorities, opportunities, and  challenges.
  • Representing the region on monthly calls with the Washington centennial office and facilitating and coordinating servicewide initiatives.
  • Coordinating regional events and programs and fostering dialogue among park coordinators on local event and program development.
  • Serving as a communication link between the Washington office and parks, and regional leadership and parks. 

Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.

For more information regarding the position, please contact Stephanie Burkhart at 415-623-2103.

Applications must be received no later than Friday, October 3rd.