Wendy Janssen Selected As New Superintendent Of Appalachian National Scenic Trail

Friday, January 11, 2013

The National Park Service has announced its selection of Wendy K. Janssen as the new superintendent of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, a unit of the National Park System. She replaces Pam Underhill, who recently retired this past year. 

Ms. Janssen is expected to assume her new position in February and will be working in cooperation with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) and its affiliated Trail clubs and volunteers, and federal, state, local and private partners in the protection and management of the Appalachian Trail (A.T.).  

“The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is excited that the National Park Service has named Wendy as the new superintendent of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. Her proven history in maintaining and developing strong partnerships will be instrumental in continued protection of the Appalachian Trail,” said Mark Wenger, executive director and CEO of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy.   

Since 2008, Ms. Janssen has served as superintendent of Hagerman Fossil Beds National Monument (HAFO) and Minidoka National Historic Site (MIIN) in Idaho, with a unit of MIIN in Bainbridge Island, WA.  HAFO contains the National Natural Landmark Hagerman Horse Quarry and over 600 sites with world-class paleontological resources and is one of three sites in the National Park Service that contains a portion of the Oregon National Historic Trail. MIIN protects and preserves the history and cultural resources associated with the incarceration of Japanese Americans during the Second World War and are a venue for examining the fragility of democracy during times of crisis.  

During her tenure, Ms. Janssen led extensive planning and implementation efforts for both sites, including the construction of new facilities, preservation of historic camp structures, and development of education programs. In those efforts she worked with her staff to engage new audiences and involve partners to establish a cooperative and collaborative environment. Ms. Janssen also worked on many external issues affecting both parks, including wind turbines, transmission lines, and a concentrated animal feeding operation.

“Wendy’s commitment to working collaboratively and building strong partnerships have been a cornerstone of her career in the National Park Service,” said Northeast Regional Director Dennis Reidenbach. “Her excellence in those areas are just a few of the many reasons we know she is the perfect fit to lead the Appalachian Trail’s unique cooperative management system into the centennial of the National Park System in 2016, and beyond.”

Ms. Janssen has worked in management positions at parks across the country including Cabrillo National Monument, Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (NRA), Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site (NHS) and Preservation District, and Whiskeytown NRA, in addition to being a planner at the Service’s Harpers Ferry Center and park ranger positions at the USS Arizona Memorial, Natchez National Historical Park (NHP), Boston NHP, Lowell NHP, Saint-Gaudens NHS, and Lyndon B. Johnson NHP.  

“It is an honor to be selected as the superintendent of this much loved national treasure and the first National Scenic Trail,” Ms. Janssen said.  “This ‘footpath for the people’ is a wonderful example of ‘citizen action in the public interest’ and I look forward to working with Trail staff, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, stakeholders, agency partners, neighbors and communities to continue to protect this incredible trail system and its significant resources that are accessible to millions of residents in the eastern United States.”

Ms. Janssen is a graduate of Rutgers University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.  She will be relocating with her husband Steven Floray, who is a museum curator with the National Park Service.

The A.T. extends about 2,180 miles from Maine to Georgia, spanning 14 states, passes through 6 national park units and 8 forests. It is one of the longest continuously marked footpaths in the world.  Volunteers typically donate more than 220,000 hours of their time doing trail-related work each year, and about 2 to 3 million visitors walk a portion of the A.T. each year. The National Park Service works in consultation and cooperation with the ATC and its affiliated trail clubs and volunteers, and federal, state, local and private partners in the Cooperative Management System. 


TWRA To Conduct Roadblocks On Agency Controlled Lands

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is planning to conduct roadblocks on several TWRA controlled or managed lands during the upcoming hunting seasons. TWRA controlled and managed lands include Wildlife Management Areas, public hunting areas, wildlife refuges and other properties under agency ownership or control including TVA property, Corps of Engineer lands, and the Cherokee ... (click for more)

New Task Force Focuses On Community Involved Bear Management

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency along with multiple partners have developed a new task force to focus on bear management in Sevier County and surrounding communities.  This new educational initiative is being referred to as the BearWise Task Force and is sponsored by the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. The program focuses on informing the ... (click for more)

Boyd Questions Effectiveness Of Read 20 Program; Coppinger Defends It

County Commissioner Tim Boyd said he questions the effectiveness of the Read 20 pre-K literacy program and wants the director to come before the County Commission to answer questions.   County Mayor Jim Coppinger defended the program, noting that it was the creation of former County Mayor Claude Ramsey.   Commissioner Boyd said the low literacy level hearing ... (click for more)

Corker Says Without Budget Reform, Washington Is “Laying A Huge Burden On Future Generations”

In remarks on the Senate floor  on Wednesday , Senator Bob Corker joined a number of colleagues to discuss the broken federal budget process.   “The processes that we have in place make it impossible for us to really deal with our country’s fiscal issues,” said Senator Corker. “Today is the perfect example of that: we pass a continuing resolution ... (click for more)

Jimmy Templeton Will Be Missed At The City Yards

If only we had known about the Chattanooga City Council's planned retirement send off for Jimmy Templeton of Public Works, the room would have been filled to overflowing with his friends and admirers - including me.   I have had the honor of knowing and working with Jimmy since the 1970's (and also knew his father "Big Jim").  Jimmy was a strong right hand for whoever ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Knobfather & Me

I’ve seen some beautiful things in my life. I’ve eaten dinner inside the Eiffel Tower with the city of Paris all aglitter below. I’ve been sprayed by champagne in the Dallas Cowboys’ dressing room after they won the Super Bowl. I’ve stood both at the top and at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. I’ve snorkeled in the Great Exuma islands, learned to snow ski in the Austrian Alps, and ... (click for more)