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Adjunct History Professor Receives National Park Service Award for Innovative eBook Partnership Project
Author: Tracy Fortmann, National Park Service
Posted: October 25, 2013

VANCOUVER, WA -- The National Park Service's Pacific West Region is proud to announce that Greg Shine, Fort Vancouver National Historic Site Chief Ranger and Historian, has been chosen as the Pacific West Region 2013 Freeman Tilden Award recipient.

The National Park Service's Pacific West Region spans 106 degrees across the globe, and preserves and protects 58 spectacular national parks as far west as American Samoa and as far east Saipan. Shine will now represent the National Park Service's Pacific West Region in the National Freeman Tilden Award competition.

Through his role at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site and as an adjunct faculty member in Portland State University's Public History Program teaching a course on historic site interpretation, Shine conceived, planned, helped create, and guided to publication the digital eBook Revealing Our Past: A History of Nineteenth Century Vancouver Barracks through 25 Objects .

"Chief Ranger Shine and his student coauthors have created a very special book, one that speaks through a new medium to the deep significance of this national park and the incredible objects of the park's renowned museum collection," said Tracy Fortmann, Fort Vancouver National Historic Site Superintendent. "This award demonstrates Greg's strong, outstanding commitment and creativity in interpretation at this national park."

"This is a first in the national park system, a project that reflects the cutting-edge of creativity and originality in digital interpretation," said Christine Lehnertz, Regional Director for the National Park Service's Pacific West Region, in a letter announcing the award. "It is one of the first publications created expressly for digital publication that includes features that serve a diversity of learning styles. This project significantly advances the practice of interpretation and education by linking more directly with cultural resource disciplines, evolving the nature of NPS-university partnerships, and modeling best practices in interpretation and history," Lehnertz said.

The National Park Service Freeman Tilden Award was created to recognize an individual who has successfully developed, revitalized, or delivered a specific interpretive or education program or project in a particularly effective and creative fashion. This is the highest National Park Service award a field interpreter can receive.

Fort Vancouver National Historic Site is one of the 401 national parks which make up the National Park System and it is located in both Washington and Oregon. This national park is also the heart of the Vancouver National Historic Reserve which is located in Vancouver, Washington. The Vancouver National Historic Reserve brings together a national park, a premier archaeological site, the region's first military post, an international fur trade emporium, one of the oldest operating airfields, the first national historic site west of the Mississippi River, and a waterfront trail and environmental center on the banks of the Columbia River. The partners of the Reserve teach visitors about the fur trade, early military life, natural history, and pioneers in aviation, all within the context of Vancouver's role in regional and national development. The National Park Service's vast array of public programs -- including living history events, festivals, cultural demonstrations, exhibits, active archaeology, and other special activities - serve communities in Washington and Oregon and create a dynamic, fun, and unique tourist destination for people of all ages.

Read the full story here