Valerie Naylor is the recipient of the 2013 Stephen T. Mather Award for her steadfast leadership and persistent dedication to National Parks. Her persistent dedication has been put to the test against industrial pressure from the Bakken Oil Boom on the borders of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.
For the past four years, managing this beautiful national park has been an exercise in relentless dedication to monitoring the intrusion of industry towards the border of the park. Ranger Naylor has negotiated with oil companies to minimize intrusion on the border and view from within the park.
After building a reputation for being relentless, respectful, and tenacious in protecting the park, Valerie is retiring from the National Park Service on October 31st.
Ranger Naylor shares a story about the time Theodore Roosevelt spent in the Badlands of North Dakota, within what is now the National Park which holds his name. This story reminds us that every park is to someone what the Badlands were to Theodore Roosevelt. Each park has the potential to change someone’s life. Knowing that, how can you not put all you have into making your park the best it can be?
Valeria Naylor gets that. And that is why, come November 1st, it is going to feel like something is missing from the National Park Service.