Harrisburg, PA - Today, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn announced the appointment of three new managers to oversee operations of state park complexes based in Berks, Monroe, and Clinton counties.
James Wassell, former manager of the Lackawanna County-based Lackawanna State Park Complex, has been named to oversee the French Creek State Park Complex in Berks and Chester counties.
Steven Jones, formerly assigned to the Bureau of State Parks’ Harrisburg headquarters, has been named to oversee the Tobyhanna State Park Complex in Monroe County.
Sarah Lindgren, former assistant park manager at Raccoon Creek State Park Complex, based in Beaver County, has been named to oversee the Kettle Creek State Park Complex, based in Clinton County.
“All three managers possess that rare blend of managerial aptitude, professionalism, and public relations skills,” said Dunn. “This translates into more enjoyable, rewarding experiences for visitors at the seven state parks now overseen by these new appointees.”
Straddling the Berks-Chester county line, French Creek State Park is comprised of 7,730 acres and is the largest block of contiguous forest between Washington, D.C., and New York City. Home to two lakes, Hopewell and Scotts Run, forests, wetlands and fields, the park draws visitors from southeastern Pennsylvania to hike, fish, camp, and bike. The complex includes nearby Marsh Creek State Park, Chester County, which includes 1,727 acres and Marsh Creek Lake.
“I am truly excited for my homecoming to French Creek State Park Complex,” said Wassel, who served five years as complex assistant manager, beginning in 2011. “This is where it all started for me and where I fell in love with our beautiful park system and this job.”
In addition to his French Creek and Lackawanna duties, Wassel, 29, also served as manager of the Ridley Creek State Park Complex, based in Delaware County, and assistant manager at Marsh Creek State Park.
A native of Harborcreek, Erie County, Wassell holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental resource management from Keystone College.
Located on the Monroe-Wayne county line, Tobyhanna State Park’s 5,440 acres include the 170-acre Tobyhanna Lake. The complex also is comprised of Big Pocono State Park, consisting of 1,306 acres and the ski area, Camelback Mountain Resort; and Gouldsboro State Park, with 2,800 acres and the 250-acre Gouldsboro Lake.
Taking over duties at at Tobyhanna, Jones brings an extensive backrgound of conservation and recreation at the local and state level. Since 2013, he had overseen oil and gas operations, rights-of-way, leasing and other agreements, and other duties at the Bureau of State Park’s Harrisburg headquarters. Prior to that, he had worked as park manager-maintenance supervisor with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks; a warden with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks; and parks superintendent with the City of York.
A native of Lancaster County, Jones, 60, holds an associate’s degree in wildlife technology from Penn State DuBois; a bachelor’s degree in recreation from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania; and a master’s degree in recreation and parks administration from Pennsylvania State University.
“I am very excited about this great opportunity and the challenge this change will bring,” Jones said. “I eagerly anticipate joining a great team of employees; serving the public; connecting in the community; and making a difference at the Tobyhanna State Park Complex.”
Among the 29 state parks within the Pennsylvania Wilds, Kettle Creek consists of 1,793 acres along Kettle Creek in western Clinton County. Many of its existing recreational facilities arose from a joint flood-control project developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the former Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources. The complex also includes the nearby 132-acres Ole Bull State Park in Potter County.
Lindgren comes to the Kettle Creek State Park Complex from Raccoon Creek State Park Complex, Beaver County, where she served as assistant manager. In 2012, she began working for DCNR’s Bureau of State Parks as ranger trainee at Lyman Run State Park, Potter County, and later that year became a manager trainee in State Parks Region 1, based in Emporium. Most recently she served for almost five years as assistant manager at the Raccoon State Park Complex.
“Kettle Creek and Ole Bull have always held a special place in my heart and I always get such an overwhelming feeling of being home when I enter the Pennsylvania Wilds,” Lindgren said. “My family and I are over-the-moon excited to have this opportunity.”
Married and the mother of two young children, Lindgren, 31, is a native of Glen Hazel, Elk County. She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Allegheny College.
For more information on any of Pennsylvania’s 121 state parks, call 1-888-PA-PARKS between 7:00 AM and 5:00 PM Monday through Saturday; or visit DCNR’s website.
MEDIA CONTACT: Terry Brady, 717-705-2225; firstname.lastname@example.org.