WA State Parks Director To Step Down

This news release was just issued by WA State Parks:

State Parks Director Rex Derr announces retirement

OLYMPIA – March 11, 2010 – State Parks Director Rex Derr announced late
Tuesday that he will retire on Nov. 30.

Derr, who will be 62 in June, said he and his wife Anne want to pursue
their outdoor recreation passions and spend time with children and
grandchildren in other parts of the country. Derr informed the
Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission of his decision at the
end of a public work session Tuesday at State Parks Headquarters in
Olympia. Derr said he announced his plans early to give the Commission
time to recruit and hire a new director and to put a transition plan in

Derr is a lifelong parks and recreation professional, having served for
33 years with Washington State Parks. He was hired by the Commission in
2002 to serve as agency director. Before coming to Washington State
Parks, he was a ranger with the National Park Service.

“This timing for my retirement is just right for my wife Anne and me,”
Derr said. “Our state and country are in challenging times, but I
believe the state park system is in good hands. I know Washington
citizens, state policy makers, the Commission and staff can keep the
momentum going on our Centennial 2013 goals and can keep up the
standards we’ve set for a high-quality park system.”

“I am so fortunate to have had this wonderful career and so very proud
to have worked with the people of Washington, the Commission and our
Washington State Parks staff. We have a phenomenal team of people who
really are committed to sustaining a quality park system and caring for
our state’s resources,” Derr said.

In addition to his professional life with parks, Derr has been active in
the local community. He is well-known for his talents as a Master of
Ceremonies at more than 100 community and state events. He is a former
mayor of Olympia and was Thurston County’s 2000 Citizen of the Year.

The Commission will discuss recruitment of a new director and will be
working on a transition plan for the agency.

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