Press Release Angela Gonzales Aug 31, 2018

David Vela Nominated for Director of the National Park Service

If confirmed, Vela would bring nearly three decades of public service expertise to the position.

Washington, DC – Today, after nearly twenty months without an official director, President Trump nominated David Vela to be the director of the National Park Service. If confirmed, Vela would bring nearly three decades of public service expertise to the position, including his present role as superintendent of Grand Teton National Park, and previously serving as Superintendent of Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Site and the director of the Park Service’s Southeast Region.

Statement by Theresa Pierno, President and CEO for National Parks Conservation Association:

“As the director of the National Park Service, David Vela would play an essential role in protecting 417 of America’s most treasured places and oversee the management of more than 20,000 National Park Service employees. As director, Vela must uphold the Park Service’s mission to protect and keep unimpaired our most incredible resources – natural, cultural and historic –for future generations to experience and enjoy.

“During his tenure with the Park Service, Vela has established a robust program to train the next generation of park leaders prioritizing inclusion and diverse partnerships. Vela is a problem solver and is poised to take on many obstacles facing our parks as director, including threats from development, air and water pollution, climate change and record visitation. One of the more difficult challenges will be addressing an already underfunded National Park Service and its nearly $12 billion in needed repairs.

“We look forward to the timely confirmation of David Vela as National Park Service Director and all of the important work ahead to ensure the protection and future of our national parks.”


About National Parks Conservation Association Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its 1.3 million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s most iconic and inspirational places for future generations. For more information, visit

About the author

  • Angela Gonzales Associate Director, Communications

    Angela joined NPCA in October 2017 and is an Associate Director of Communications. She currently manages outreach and communications for the Government Affairs team and Conservation Programs.