Senate confirms first Native American director to National Park Service

Published: Monday, November 22, 2021 - 5:31pm
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(usgs.gov)

The Senate has approved the nomination of Charles Sams III to direct the National Park Service, and his appointment is a historic one.

Sams is the first Native American to lead the Park Service, which has been managed by a series of acting directors since 2017, when Jonathan Jarvis resigned.

In recent years, scholars, conservationists and the agency itself have come to grips with the idea that the nation removed indigenous tribes to create America’s public lands.

“It’s great that there’s someone who has worked in tribal issues and other issues in stewardship. He brings a different perspective, and some light to this issue, and we’re really looking forward to what happens,” said Kevin Dahl of the National Parks Conservation Association.

Sams will serve under Deb Haaland, the first Native American Secretary of Interior.

Native American Affairs