Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hometown: Savannah, Georgia.
Education: B.S. in Biology, Georgia Southern University.
Position in our parks: Supervisory Park Ranger for the Interpretation, Education and Visitor Services division of Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
Where you can be found: My office is in Buxton at the Principal Keeper’s Quarters next to the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, but I am often up at park headquarters (Fort Raleigh National Historic Site), Bodie Island, and on Ocracoke Island.
Other national parks you’ve worked at: Fort Pulaski National Monument (Georgia) and Gulf Islands National Seashore (Florida).
Currently reading: Flour Water Salt Yeast: The Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza by Ken Forkish and Blackbeard the Pirate: A Reappraisal of His Life and Times by Robert Earl Lee.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Spend time with my wife and daughter, explore new places, go to the beach, fish, and cook and eat great food!
What do you like most about the Outer Banks? I really enjoy the feeling of being surrounded by nature at the edge of the world. I also really like the diversity of things to learn about.
What inspired you to follow this career path?
I interned with the National Park Service in college and the more I learned about the National Park Service, the more I liked it. I enjoyed it so much that during my senior year, I changed my major, took two semesters of senior biology classes, and started applying for positions with the National Park Service. I consider the natural world to be the most interesting thing in life. I love knowing that I am a part of something bigger and that my actions contribute to the protection of some of the world’s most beautiful and interesting places.
What does a typical workday or work week look like for you?
Since I started in December 2020, no two days have been the same. During the busy summer season, I try to spend at least one day on Bodie Island, one day on Hatteras Island, and one day on Ocracoke Island each week. When I’m not out and about taking care of my staff or working on projects in the field, you can find me in my office in the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse Principal Keeper’s Quarters.
What do you enjoy most about working in our Outer Banks national parks?
On top of working with some of the most wonderful people, I think the most rewarding part of working for the National Park Service is connecting visitors to the parks. By telling people about these places and stories from our past, you can transfer your passion and excitement to them. The more people that know about these places, the more people will care, and the better these places will be protected for the future. As a supervisor, I especially enjoy coaching new interpreters and helping my staff develop the skills necessary to make these connections.
What is your favorite memory from working in our Outer Banks national parks?
I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here on the Outer Banks and have made a lot of good memories: Climbing all three lighthouses, participating in a sea turtle hatchling release and officially opening the Ocracoke Island Discovery Center, to name a few. If I had to pick just one though — in the spring I had the opportunity to take a tour of the Ocracoke Pony Pasture and associated facilities with our Park Wrangler, Laura. I got to meet the ponies, learn about their history and learn about all that goes into their feeding and caretaking. It was so interesting!
Why are our Outer Banks national parks important?
The Outer Banks national parks are vitally important for their own unique reasons. Each preserves its own American stories, unspoiled landscapes and provides places of discovery and enjoyment. Millions of people visit our parks every year to learn, engage, reflect, and relax, and I’m elated to be a part of the team that manages them.
Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you or our parks?
I have a dog named Brahma who’s been featured several times as a National Park Service B.A.R.K. Ranger! (B.A.R.K stands for: Bag your pet’s waste; Always leash your pet; Respect wildlife; Know where you can go.)