Green Guide

Grand Teton National Park names new superintendent

Posted November 19, 2020 1:58 p.m. EST

— Wildlife officials in northwestern Wyoming have named park service veteran Palmer Jenkins, Jr. as the next superintendent of Grand Teton National Park.

Jenkins will replace Gopaul Noojibail, who’s been in an acting supervisory role for Teton Park ever since former superintendent David Vela was named acting director of the National Park Service more than two years ago, The Jackson Hole News & Guide reported Wednesday.

Noojibail is expected to revert to deputy superintendent.

Rob Wallace, assistant secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the U.S. Department of the Interior, said Jenkins would be a “great fit.”

Jenkins “is adept at building coalitions and finding innovative and collaborative solutions to tough challenges,” he said.

Jenkins was the superintendent for Mount Rainier National Park in Washington state since 2018. He said he was attracted to the job because of the iconic landscape and conservation work in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem.

Jenkins visited the area many times while he dated his now-wife Laurie Jenkins, who was an employee at Yellowstone National Park. He has since visited national parks in California, Washington and Oregon and became familiar with western landscapes.

His career with the National Park Service has spanned 34 years. Prior to Rainier, he had a superintendent role at North Cascades National Park — where he landed his first agency job as seasonal ranger. He has worked as superintendent of Lewis and Clark National Historical Park, acting superintendent of Yosemite National Park, and as a deputy regional director and acting regional director.

It is unclear when Jenkins is expected to start. But he is likely to relocate at the beginning of next year.

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