The Times' story (April 21), "Park Service Official, at Odds with Hodel Over Public Use, Quits," contains factual errors. What is particularly distressing is that such errors appear even though accurate information is a matter of public record since, as the article notes, it was presented during hearings before Congress.
The article falsely asserted that I " . . . have reorganized the top layers of the Park Service administration by moving professional rangers out of top decision-making jobs." In every case where a position was traditionally occupied by a career professional, I have recommended only career professionals as replacements.
Specifically, I recommended a career professional to be the regional director of the Western region; I recommended a career professional to be the regional director of the Pacific Northwest region; I recommended a career professional to be the regional director of the Midwest region; and I recommended a career professional to be the associate director for natural resources. Subsequently, a career professional has been transferred into each of these positions. The record is clear and irrefutable--accusations that I have tried to replace career officials with political appointees have no basis in fact.
The article also incorrectly asserted that I changed outgoing Western Regional Director Howard Chapman's job rating because of his opposition to positions adopted by Secretary Donald P. Hodel. To have done so would have been a prohibited personnel practice, an action that I would never take and which Secretary Hodel would never tolerate.