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PROMO 64J Logo - Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site Sign - Jeanne Sorensen

National Park Service selects superintendent of High Plains Group in Colorado and New Mexico

Entrance sign at the Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site. © KiowaCountyPress.net / Jeanne Sorensen

The National Park Service has selected Eric Leonard as superintendent of the High Plains Group of parks in Colorado and New Mexico. The High Plains Group includes Amache National Historic SiteBent’s Old Fort National Historic SiteCapulin Volcano National Monument and Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site. Leonard will begin his new assignment June 4. 

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PROMO 660 x 440 History - Bents Old Fort - NPS

Bent's Old Fort. Courtesy NPS.

“I am pleased to welcome Eric into this superintendent role, he will be a great leader for the High Plains Group of parks,” said Regional Director Kate Hammond. “Eric has a very positive attitude, practical experience with new parks, and a passion for history and working with staff, communities and stakeholders to preserve and tell the complex stories of America.” 

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PICT NPS Eric Leonard - NPS

Eric Leonard - NPS

Most recently, Leonard served as superintendent of Guadalupe Mountains National Park. He previously spent five years as superintendent of Minuteman Missile National Historic Site. Leonard served as chief of interpretation and education and as acting superintendent at Andersonville National Historic Site. Additionally, he worked as an interpretive ranger at numerous parks including Chickasaw National Recreation AreaBig Bend National ParkArkansas Post National MonumentFort Smith National Historic Site and Fort Larned National Historic Site

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PICT Sign at Sand Creek Site - Chris Sorensen

One of many signs at the Sand Creek Massacres National Historic Site calling out the history of the area and those involved. © Chris Sorensen

“While the four parks of the High Plains Group are distinctive and separated by some distance, they each have a unique American story and are tied together by prairie landscapes,” said Leonard. “I look forward to joining the team and collaborating with staff, Tribes, and partners to promote and preserve these special places.”

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PICT Visitors to Camp Amache

Visitors to Camp Amache

Leonard earned a master’s degree in history from the University of Oklahoma and a bachelor’s degree in history from Fort Hays State University. He will be moving to the area with his wife Elizabeth. Leonard succeeds Stuart West who recently accepted the superintendent position at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Curecanti National Recreation Area.