Denali National Park in Alaska gets first female superintendent

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Brooke Merrell has been named superintendent of Denali National Park and Preserve in Alaska and is the first woman to hold the position in the park’s 105-year history, the National Park Service announced Thursday. .

Merrell served as acting superintendent for the past nine months, the agency said in a statement. She had held previous positions with the parks department and has been deputy superintendent at Denali since January 2021.

One of the challenges the park faces is dealing with a section of the road that runs through Denali that officials say is rapidly collapsing amid climate change. The park service has proposed a large steel bridge in the Pretty Rocks landslide area.

The first phase of the project has yet to begin, said Peter Christian, spokesman for the park service’s Alaska region. He said via email that the park was “working on a design package for Phase I advertising. The contractor for the project is expected to be selected by November.”

Travel along the 92-mile (148-kilometer) route has been limited to mile 43, a restriction the park says is expected to remain in place until the summer of 2023.

The Associated Press

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