YNP Superintendent Wenk faces reassignment in potential parks management shake-up

Posted at 5:08 PM, May 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-01 19:08:30-04

The Washington Post is reporting that Dan Wenk, Superintendent of Yellowstone National Park, may be reassigned in a major National Parks management shake-up.

The Post says Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke plans to send Wenk to Washington D.C. to the office that supervises the National Capitol Parks region.

The head of the Park Service Omaha office, Cameron Sholly, would then take over administration of Yellowstone.

A Park Service spokesperson says there are no announcements to make about personnel moves. That concerns local conservationists like Caroline Byrd, Executive Director of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition.

 “Dan is an amazing partner. He is a really outstanding leader. He cares deeply about Yellowstone of course, but more than that he’s concerned with the whole ecosystems,” said Byrd.

Byrd says she hopes the reassignment doesn’t happen, but if it does, she says GYC will move quickly to meet with whoever takes over.

“We would anticipate and we would weigh in to make sure that whoever comes after Dan, if there is a replacement for Dan, if this does come to pass, that they have a deep understanding of the conservation issues that face Yellowstone,” she said.

Byrd says it’s vital that whoever steps into the top seat at Yellowstone protect the conservation ethic that created the park. She says key issues include overcrowding, habitat protection in both the park and surrounding areas, and protection of wildlife.