NPS Hires Alaska Native Liaison

Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage

The National Park Service in Alaska has hired a full time Alaska Native liaison to help better coordinate work between NPS and tribes in Alaska. Jean Gamache has worked for the Environmental Protection Agency as a tribal programs manager for more than 13 years in Oregon. Gamache is an enrolled member of the Central council of Tlingit and Haida tribes of Alaska. She has a law degree from the University of New Hampshire School of Law and a bachelor of science from UAA.

NPS Alaska spokesman John Quinley says Gamache will help coordinate statewide issues with tribes, corporations and other tribal groups.

Quinley says one important task Gamache will work on is helping people who live closest to the parks understand federal law changes as it relates to local hire. The Alaska Lands Act contained a provision that allows residents who reside close to parks and conservation units to bypass some of the civil servant requirements for NPS jobs.

Although she’ll be based in Anchorage, Gamache will work statewide to help with a variety of issues such as guiding people through the process of making proposals to the subsistence board and contracting for Native organizations for work within NPS properties. Quinley says NPS currently contracts with Native organizations for work on building maintenance and interpretations for visitor’s centers.

Gamache will begin work at her new post on March 13th.

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