Chas Van Genderen has been the Director for Montana State Parks, a division of the Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks, since 2009. As Director, Chas oversees more than 50 state parks that feature destinations explored by Lewis & Clark, dinosaur trail archeology, native-american culture, and include 7 National Historic Landmarks and 10 National Register of Historic Places. In this role, he has made preservation and promotion of Montana's natural, cultural and recreation heritage top priorities.
His first job in the outdoors was as a Youth Conservation Corps member in 1976 at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and that experience helped guide a career in park and conservation work.
Chas' experience spans more than twenty-five years where he worked with Colorado State Parks, served as a county park manager in Michigan, and held several field and administrative positions with Utah State Parks before settling in Montana in 1998. He currently serves on a number of boards and committees focused on improving management of and support for parks, recreation and historic resources. Chas has received several special recognitions throughout his career.
He holds a Bachelors degree in Natural Resources Management from Colorado State University.
Chas along with his wife, Liz and adult daughters Kate and Emily, enjoy the outdoors and exploring our Nation's rich heritage.