It’s been nothing short than a tough season for the Whiskeytown National Recreation Area. In June, Superintendent Jim Milestone was accused of improperly soliciting funds for the park, which put him on a sort of suspension from his post. Then in July, the Carr Fire broke out, burning 90 percent of the park and completely destroying most of its infrastructure.
Now, as the park works towards rebuilding following the fire, a new superintendent has been welcomed to the team.
On Monday, officials welcomed Josh Hoines as the brand new Whiskeytown National Recreation Area Superintendent. They referenced his experience with disaster recovery as a reason he is a perfect candidate for the job.
“Josh has a proven track record leading park disaster recovery efforts,” said Stan Austin, regional director for the National Park Service’s Pacific West Region. “He is a collaborative leader with a strong background in resources management, making him well-prepared to lead Whiskeytown’s recovery.”
Hoines has worked in land management for more than 20 years, including 14 years with the National Park Service. He comes to Whiskeytown from Death Valley National Park, where he is currently the chief of resources. He oversees the park’s integrated resources and environmental compliance programs. As part of his role, he has led critical aspects of Death Valley’s recovery from record-breaking 2015 flash floods that caused major damage to the park.
“Whiskeytown embodies the best parts of the National Park Service mission and offers great opportunities for conservation and recreation,” said Hoines. “I am humbled and honored by the opportunity to be a part of this resilient community, and to help with the recovery from the Carr Fire.”
Prior to moving to Death Valley, Hoines served in a variety of roles, including five years as the interagency restoration coordinator for nearly 10 million acres of public land in Southern Nevada, and five years at Joshua Tree National Park as the vegetation branch chief.
Hoines holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and completed graduate work in restoration ecology at the University of Idaho. He looks forward to moving to Northern California with his wife, Steph, who is an archeologist with the state of California, their two cats “Thing 1” and “Thing 2” and their dog, Murphy. Hoines is an avid home brewer who enjoys running, fishing and camping.