A rugged, whitewater river flowing northward through deep canyons, the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. New River Gorge National River in West Virginia encompasses over 70,000 acres of land along the New River, is rich in cultural and natural history, and offers an abundance of scenic and recreational opportunities.
Big Southern Butte is one of two domes rising from a sea of basalt near the center of the eastern Snake River Plain in Idaho. The butte is one of the largest volcanic domes in the world, but at 300,000 years old it is also one of the youngest. Hikers who trek to the 7,550-foot high summit are rewarded with spectacular panoramic views. Photo by Devin Englestead, BLM Upper Snake Wildlife Biologist.
First light at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. Established in November 22, 1939, the refuge has provided a critical stopover and wintering spot for thousands of sandhill cranes, geese and other waterfowl for 75 years. Bosque del Apache's sandhill crane population has multiplied from 18 birds in the 1840s to more than 20,000 birds today. Photo by Kim Hang Dessoliers (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Interior Secretary and U.S. Army Reserve Chief Sign Agreement to Bolster Reservist and Veteran Employment Opportunities in America's Great Outdoors
Office of the Secretary
Agreement provides military/civilian employment opportunities and facilitates re-integration of returning warriors and their families into our communities
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and U.S. Army Reserve Chief Lieutenant General Jeffrey Talley sign a memorandum of agreement to Increase Veteran and Reservist Job and Recreation Opportunities.Photo by Tami Heilemann.
WASHINGTON—Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Army Reserve Chief Lieutenant General Jeffrey Talley today signed an agreement to increase employment opportunities for reserve members and to facilitate connecting military families with America's great outdoors, history and culture.
“America's veterans and reservists have the skills and the know-how that not only build the strength of the United States Army, but can also build the capabilities of the Department of the Interior to manage the natural and cultural resources of America,” said Salazar. “This agreement answers President Obama's call to increase employment opportunities for veterans, while helping Interior build a 21st century, highly skilled workforce that reflects the diversity of the United States, engages youth, and provides sustainable ways to conserve America's Great Outdoors.”
“The Army Reserve Employer Partnership Office will collaborate with the Department of the Interior to provide targeted recruitment opportunities in the communities in which reserve Soldiers live, and assist reserve Soldiers to understand and compete in the federal hiring process,” said Talley. He added, “Our goal is to assist civilian employers to recognize and maximize the highly skilled and capable members of their community who also serve in the Army Reserve.”
Under the Memorandum of Agreement, the U.S. Army Reserve and the Department of the Interior will seek joint programming opportunities to include U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers, especially employment opportunities, collaborate to provide developmental opportunities to both workforces, engage military families in local conservation projects, and expand recreational opportunities for community-based wounded warriors.
Both parties to the memorandum recognize that merit system principles are the underpinning to the entire Federal Human Resources Management system, including hiring. “This MOA encourages the use of available options, such as non-competitive hiring authorities, to fairly recruit, select and hire eligible USAR Soldiers, as appropriate, mindful of these merit system principles, prohibited personnel practices and any applicable labor relations obligations,” the agreement states.
President Obama's Executive Order 13518, Employment of Veterans in the Federal Government, directed all federal agencies and departments to establish plans/goals to enhance recruitment of and promote employment opportunities for veterans.
Interior's Strategy for Recruitment, Hiring and Employment of Veterans identifies a goal to establish programs and partnerships that foster an increased veteran understanding of the Federal hiring process and as well as opportunities at Interior. The strategy also calls upon Interior human resource professionals and hiring managers to leverage local resources in developing an understanding of the capabilities that veterans bring to the workforce and finding qualified veteran candidates.
Some of the ways in which Interior will implement the agreement include:
Exploring ways to improve recruitment into mission-critical occupations by leveraging military experience and training in occupations such as those for engineers, technicians, law enforcement officers and administrators, and others;
Reaching Native American Army Reserve Soldiers with opportunities that exist in their communities;
Engaging local land managers, such as those from the National Park Service and Fish and Wildlife Service, with local reserve unit commanders to share information about Interior and to learn more about military leadership and technical training – heightening the awareness of both organizations; and
Providing volunteer opportunities to families of deployed military reservists and participating in Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Events in nearby communities.
To view the Interior-Army Reserve Memorandum of Agreement click HERE.