In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the National Park Service Organic Act establishing the agency and defining its core mission. Today, National Park Service employees at Padre Island National Seashore strive to preserve and protect the park through resource education, visitor and resource protection, resource management and science, facilities management, and administration. Each function is vital to the operation and continued public use of this special place. Explore our offices to gain a better understanding of how the National Park Service manages the park.
For media inquiries, please contact the park Public Affairs Office.
Office of the Superintendent
The Office of the Superintendent is located within the park at park headquarters. This office has the ultimate responsibility for managing a 130,434-acre park with a staff of nearly 57 National Park Service employees, a budget of approximately $6.4 million, concessions and commercial services, a safety program, all while cooperating with park partners and local communities where visitors spend an estimated $29.9 million each year.
The office of Administration manages important behind the scenes programs like budget, contracting, human resources, employee housing, property management, procurement, telecommunications, and information technology. While their work is not often noticed directly by park visitors, it directly effects park operations and NPS employees every day. Most administration functions are managed out of park headquarters.
Facilities Management oversees the operation of maintaining campgrounds, buildings, grounds, roads, trails, and utilities. They ensure public safety in facilities and manage facility rehabilitation and improvement projects throughout the park. Their work is vital to ensure the park functions properly and that visitors enjoy their experience while they are here.
Interpretation & Education
Staff in this division are the bridge between visitors and the park. These rangers work in the visitor center, collect fees, and provide interpretive talks, walks, demonstrations, and community outreach programs. They write and design roadside and indoor exhibits, publications, videos, webpages, and engage with the public through social media. They connect young visitors through Junior Ranger and curriculum-based environmental education programs.
Sea Turtle Science & Recovery
As the only of its kind division is the National Park Service, staff within this office have the primary function of carrying out science and recovery efforts of the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle species. The program began thorough a bi-National recovery plan between the United States and Mexico. Staff in this division also assist with the state and national Sea Turtle Stranding and Salvage Networks.
Science & Resource Management
This office is responsible for the research and management of the park's archeology, geology, historic structures, vegetation, wildlife, air and water quality, marine debris studies and oil and gas wells. S&RM staff also oversee the park museum collections consisting of 3,923 artifacts and specimens.
Visitor & Resource Protection
Padre Island's law enforcement rangers provide safety and security for park visitors, employees, and its resources. They're in charge of emergency medical services, search and rescue, structural and wildland fire, and law enforcement. NPS law enforcement rangers work with other federal, state and local agencies to provide for visitor and resource protection in the park. This office also leads the fee collection program in the park.
Last updated: October 26, 2023