Saturday, July 11, 2009

Related News

President Obama announced today the appointment of the new Director of the National Park Service, former Superintendent of Mt. Rainier NP, Jonathon Jarvis, currently the Director of the Pacific West Region. The announcement is as follows:

"Jonathan B. Jarvis, Nominee for Director, National Park Service, Department of the Interior Jon Jarvis has been an employee for the National Park Service for over 30 years. Most recently he has served as the Regional Director for the Pacific West Region. Mr. Jarvis is responsible for all National Park System units (54) and programs in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, California, Nevada, Hawaii and the Pacific Islands of Guam, Saipan and American Samoa. Additionally Mr. Jarvis oversees 3,000 employees with a $350 million annual budget. Prior to this, Mr. Jarvis was the Superintendent of Mount Rainier National Park in Ashford, Washington. He has also been the Superintendent of Craters of the Moon National Monument in Idaho where his position required close coordination with local ranchers, the BLM, rural communities surrounding the National Monument and the Department of Energy. He also served as the Superintendent of Wrangell-St Elias National Park & Preserve in Copper Center, Alaska which involved mining, aircraft, subsistence hunting & fishing rights, native villages as well as rural communities. Mr. Jarvis was the Chief of Natural and Cultural Resources: North Cascades National Park for over five years where he was the chief biologist of the 684,000 acre complex of two recreation areas and one national park."

This doesn't really relate to the current status and work at Mt. Rainier NP, but it shows, as I experienced in the US Geological Survey, that sometimes good guys do get promoted to top leadership positions. There are many good leaders and managers in government agencies, but most, however, prefer to find the level they're comfortable at and do their best work. All too often leaders are those who want and do climb the career ladder. They're often inept or worse, incompetent, only political savy and know who's ass to kiss.

And yes, I've saw those in my career, and even worked for a few. They suck. Straight and simple, and never liked or respected, only tolerated until they move on. A few eventually learn, but most don't. Fortunately, most of them eventually find the level of their incompetence because most of the real senior managers and leaders see through them to let them know the reality of things. But that's a whole other story best told over a good brew and food at a tavern.

For now, let's congratulate Mr. Jarvis for a job well done and a future to do well too.

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