Mammoth Cave National Park has named a new superintendent, and she is the first woman to serve in that capacity in the park’s history.
Sarah Craighead will replace Patrick Reed, who retired at the end of June. She’s currently the superintendent at Death Valley National Park, which straddles parts of California and Nevada. She’s also worked at national parks in Arizona, Oklahoma and Maine, among others.
But Craighead is originally from Horse Cave, Kentucky—right outside the Mammoth Cave National Park. She graduated from Caverna High School as the valedictorian in 1974. She worked at Mammoth Cave as a campground ranger and cave guide while she was in college at Transylvania University in Lexington.
In a statement, Craighead credited Mammoth Cave for launching her career with the National Park Service, and says she looks forward to reconnecting with the area and park after three decades away. She begins her new job on November 4.