Secretary Haaland Appoints New Members to the National Park System Advisory Board

Last edited 05/24/2023

Date: Wednesday, May 24, 2023


WASHINGTON — Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland appointed 15 new members to the National Park System Advisory Board today. First authorized in 1935, the Board advises the Secretary and the Director of the National Park Service (NPS) on matters relating to the Service's work.

“National parks are some of the most visible and important forums for visitors to explore the outdoors and learn the complicated yet vital story of America.” said Secretary Haaland. “These new National Park System Advisory Board members represent experienced practitioners in cultural and natural resources management, as well as experts in relevant academic fields including environmental law, geography, and history. I look forward to their insight as we work to make our public lands accessible and inviting to all.”

In addition to its advisory role, the Board also has a regulatory role in recommending new National Natural Landmarks and National Historic Landmarks and provides recommendations regarding the national historic significance of proposed National Historic Trails. In recognition of the importance of hearing from Tribal voices and perspectives when making management decisions that impact public lands and waters, Secretary Haaland added a requirement that at least one member of the Board be from a federally recognized Tribe.

“The challenges faced by the National Park Service reflect the challenges faced by our nation,” said NPS Director Chuck Sams. “Whether it’s an increasing demand for dwindling resources, the impacts of a changing climate, or the struggle to understand how our past influences today’s injustices, recommendations developed by the National Park System Advisory Board will help us strengthen our connection to the land and to our history.”

The terms of the appointed members are not to exceed four years. The Board will meet for the first time later this year. The new appointees are:

  • Bowen Blair – Writer; J.D. in Environmental Law, Lewis and Clark College
  • Daniella Levine Cava – Mayor, Miami-Dade County, Florida; J.D., Columbia University
  • Theresa Coble – Professor, Experimental and Family Education, University of Missouri; Ph.D. in Forest Resources, University of Minnesota
  • Aja DeCoteau – Executive Director, Columbia River Intertribal Fish Commission; Master of Environmental Management, Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies; Member Yakama Nation
  • Shane Douglas – General Manager, AllTrails; Board Member, Outdoor Afro & Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy
  • Victor Galan – Ph.D. in Anthropology and Geoarcheology, Texas A&M University
  • Gwen Iacona – Director, Centre for Biodiversity Outcomes, Arizona State University; Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee
  • Robert Keiter – Director, Wallace Stegner Center for Land, Resources and the Environment, S.J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah
  • Thomas Kiernan – President and CEO, American Rivers; Former President, National Parks Conservation Association
  • Breece Robertson – Chief Impact Officer, One Tree Planted; M.A. Geography, Appalachian State University
  • Lindsay Robertson – Chickasaw Nation Endowed Chair in Native American Law Emeritus; University of Oklahoma College of Law
  • Lisa Sumption – Director, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department
  • Jessica Thompson – Professor, College of Business, University of Utah; Ph.D. in Environmental Communication and Conflict Resolution
  • Molly Ward – Board Member Fort Monroe Foundation & Chesapeake Conservancy; Former Secretary of Natural Resources, Commonwealth of Virginia; Former Mayor, City of Hampton, Virginia; JD, William and Mary Law School
  • Reid Wilson – Secretary, North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources


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