Harrisburg, PA -- Today, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn announced the appointment of James McCorkle as manager of the Shawnee/Blue Knob State Park Complex in Bedford County. He is the former manager of the Parker Dam State Park Complex, Clearfield County.
"James brings a wealth of management and public relations experience as well as strong enthusiasm for public enjoyment and appreciation of the outdoors," said Dunn. "His qualifications can only enhance the experience of park visitors at Shawnee and Blue Knob."
McCorkle will oversee 6,128 acres comprising Blue Knob State Park. Near Imler, the park is named for the majestic, dome-shaped mountain, Blue Knob, which, at 3,146 feet above sea level, is the second highest mountain in Pennsylvania. The park leases a downhill skiing area, Ski Blue Knob, which offers one of the most challenging ski resorts in Pennsylvania. An estimated 317,700 visitors are drawn to Blue Knob each year.
The complex is headquartered at the 3,983-acre Shawnee State Park, 10 miles west of Bedford. With its modern recreational facilities and 451-acre Shawnee Lake, Shawnee State Park draws about 361,800 visitors a year.
"While departing Parker Dam and S.B. Elliott state parks has been a tough decision, I am sincerely looking forward to the opportunity and challenges of managing the large complex of Shawnee and Blue Knob state parks," McCorkle said. "My nearly 13 years in the Bureau of State Parks has given me a solid foundation for this next step in my career. I have worked at a wide variety of wonderful state parks during that time and have always been excited to learn about the history and local recreational opportunities that each different area has to offer. I am an avid whitewater boater, fisherman and hiker and enjoy camping and recreating in our parks and forests with my family."
McCorkle succeeds Jared Fencil, who was named assistant regional manager of the bureau's Region 1, based in Emporium, Cameron County.
The new complex manager began his bureau career in the park manager trainee program of Region 1, based in Emporium, Cameron County. He was named manager of Chapman State Park, Warren County, then assumed the assistant manager post at Laurel Hill State Park Complex, based in Somerset County. He was named manager of the Parker Dam State Park Complex in 2017.
A native of Butler, Butler County, McCorkle 37, holds an associate degree in parks and recreation from Butler County Community College and a bachelor's degree in park and resource management from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania.
He and his wife are the parents of three children, ages 1 to 7.
For more information on the Shawnee/Blue Knob State Park Complex call 1-888-PA-PARKS from 7:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Monday through Saturday.
MEDIA CONTACT: Terry Brady, 717-877-6315