Capital Veteran Picked To Oversee National Parks
President Clinton on Friday nominated a park service veteran to become the first African American to head the National Park Service.
Clinton’s choice of Robert G. Stanton to serve as National Park Service director makes history in several ways.
The 56-year-old Stanton will be the first park service nominee to face Senate confirmation.
His 14 predecessors took office without congressional grilling, but a massive new parks law signed by Clinton last year includes the confirmation requirement.
“Bob understands the vital role the national parks play in preserving our heritage, and how much they mean to the millions of Americans that visit them each year,” Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt said.
Until his retirement in January, Stanton served eight years as director of the park service’s National Capital Region.
That’s a particularly visible spot, as it put him in charge of the Washington monuments viewed by millions of tourists - and hundreds of lawmakers - each year.
Stanton has spent much of his career in Washington, save for stints as a seasonal ranger at Grand Teton National Park and time in the Virgin Islands and Georgia.