Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Latschar to remain as Gettysburg Superintendent

National Park Service
U.S. Department of the Interior
Northeast Regional Office
200 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

For immediate Release

Latschar to remain in current post as Gettysburg Superintendent

Gettysburg Superintendent John Latschar will remain in his current post, reversing his decision to retire and become president of the Gettysburg Foundation. Latschar made the decision following advice by Department of the Interior ethics officials that would have severely curtailed his ability to work with the park in his new role with the Foundation.

“When initially approached to consider heading the Gettysburg Foundation, Superintendent John Latschar did what any responsible federal employee should do,” said National Park Service Northeast Regional Director Dennis R. Reidenbach. “He contacted National Park Service ethics officials, and he also contacted me as his supervisor.”

When initially informed by the Washington office in October 2008 that there was no ethical issue in accepting the position, Latschar announced his retirement. Subsequently, Department of Interior ethics officials issued supplemental guidance because of Latschar’s involvement in developing agreements between the Foundation and the NPS.

"The Foundation obviously would have been honored to have John as its next president," said Foundation President Robert C. Wilburn. "But we are thrilled that he will continue to facilitate our successful partnership as superintendent of Gettysburg National Military Park." A search committee to find Wilburn’s successor is in place; Wilburn will postpone his departure from the Foundation until a successor is named.

“I had been looking forward to the challenges of moving to the private sector and working for the Gettysburg Foundation,” said Superintendent John Latschar. “However, I can't complain about going back to the best job in the National Park Service as Superintendent of Gettysburg NMP and Eisenhower NHS. We'll now redouble our efforts to make our wonderful partnership with the Gettysburg Foundation the best that the National Park Service has ever seen.”

The Gettysburg Foundation’s loss is the National Park Service’s gain, and I am happy that John chose to remain as Superintendent,” said Reidenbach. “The situation with the ethics guidance was unfortunate, but John Latschar and the Gettysburg Foundation have always maintained the highest ethical standards possible.”


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