New Natl Monuments: Civil War Reconstruction, Birmingham, Freedom Riders & Cascade-Siskiyou

Statement by the President on Designating Monuments Honoring Civil Rights History

Today, I am designating new national monuments that preserve critical chapters of our country’s history, from the Civil War to the civil rights movement.  These monuments preserve the vibrant history of the Reconstruction Era and its role in redefining freedom. They tell the important stories of the citizens who helped launch the civil rights movement in Birmingham and the Freedom Riders whose bravery raised national awareness of segregation and violence. These stories are part of our shared history. From designating Stonewall National Monument, our country’s first national monument honoring the LGBT movement, to recognizing the movement for women’s equality through the Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality National Monument, I have sought to build a more inclusive National Park System and ensure that our national parks, monuments and public lands are fully reflective of our nation’s diverse history and culture.

I am also expanding existing areas for some of our country’s treasured and historic natural resources in Oregon and California today, including stretches of California’s scenic coast and unique wildlife habitat in rugged mountain ranges and forests in Oregon and California.  Over the last 8 years, I have sought to work with local communities, Tribal governments, businesses, sportsmen, members of Congress and others to protect the most important public lands for the benefit of future generations.  Today’s actions will help ensure that more of our country’s history will be preserved and celebrated, and that more of our outdoors will be protected for all to experience and enjoy.


Secretary Jewell Applauds President’s Designation of the National Monuments to Preserve Pivotal Civil Rights Sites and the First National Monument to Civil War Reconstruction


Also Praises President’s Expansion of Existing National Monuments Protecting Natural & Cultural Resources in California & Oregon

WASHINGTON – As the country prepares to observe Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and National Park Service Acting Director Michael T. Reynolds today applauded President Barack Obama’s designation of three new national monuments to recognize the nation’s journey from the Civil War to the modern Civil Rights Movement.

The President Obama also expanded the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument in southwestern Oregon and the California Coastal National Monument to protect natural and cultural resources and areas of critical biodiversity, including highly important wildlife habitat.

Building on the Administration’s commitment to protecting places that are culturally and historically significant and that reflect the story of all Americans, President Obama today designated the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument in Birmingham, Ala., the Freedom Riders National Monument in Anniston, Ala. and the Reconstruction Era National Monument in Beaufort County, S.C. to honor historic sites in both states that played an important role in American civil rights history.

“African-American history is American history and these monuments are testament to the people and places on the front-lines of our entire nation’s march toward a more perfect union,” said Secretary Jewell. “Now the National Park Service, America’s Storyteller, will forever be responsible for safeguarding the narrative of not only the sparks that ignited the Civil Rights movement but also the hope of the Reconstruction Era, which for far too long, has been neglected from our national conscience.  Current and future generations of Americans will benefit from learning about our painful past and can find inspiration to shape a brighter future.”

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Thursday, January 12, 2017
President Obama signs a proclamation establishing The Reconstruction Era National Monument, The Freedom Riders National Monument, The Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument & The California Coastal National Monument



Designation of 24 New National Historic Landmarks

Interior Department Announces 24 New National Historic Landmarks


Designations recognize places that depict a broad range of America’s rich, complex history

WASHINGTON – As the National Park Service enters its second century of service and strives to tell a more inclusive and diverse story of America’s history, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today announced the designation of 24 new National Historic Landmarks.

The National Historic Landmarks Program recognizes historic properties of exceptional value to the nation and promotes the preservation efforts of federal, state, and local agencies and Native American tribes, as well as those of private organizations and individuals. The program is one of more than a dozen administered by the National Park Service that provide states and local communities technical assistance, recognition and funding to help preserve our nation’s shared history and create close-to-home recreation opportunities.

“These 24 new designations depict different threads of the American story that have been told through activism, architecture, music, and religious observance,” said Secretary Jewell. “Their designation ensures future generations have the ability to learn from the past as we preserve and protect the historic value of these properties and the more than 2,500 other landmarks nationwide.”

If not already so recognized, properties designated as National Historic Landmarks are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

“As the National Park Service kicks off its second century of stewardship of America’s natural and historic treasures, we look forward to connecting new generations of Americans to the places and stories recognized as National Historic Landmarks today,” said National Park Service Acting Director Michael T. Reynolds.

The 24 national historic landmarks announced today are:

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National Historic Landmarks Program


National Historic Landmarks (NHLs) are historic properties that illustrate the heritage of the United States. Today, just over 2,500 historic places bear this national distinction. NHLs come in many forms: historic buildings, sites, structures, objects, and districts. Each NHL represents an outstanding aspect of American history and culture. The program was formally inaugurated with a series of listings on October 9, 1960.

What are National Historic Landmarks?

National Historic Landmarks (NHLs) are historic places that possess exceptional value in commemorating or illustrating the history of the United States.  The National Park Service’s National Historic Landmarks Program oversees the designation of such sites.  There are just over 2,500 National Historic Landmarks.  All NHLs are also listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

NHLs come in many forms: buildings, sites, structures, objects, and districts.  A historic site may be important enough to receive designation as an NHL if it:

  • is the location with the strongest association with a turning point or significant event in American history.
  • is the best location to tell the story of an individual who played a significant role in the history of the United States.
  • is an exceptional representation of a particular building or engineering method, technique, or building type in the country.
  • provides the potential to yield new and innovative information about the past through archeology.

Most NHLs are owned by private individuals, universities, non-profit organizations, corporations, tribal entities, or local and state governments.  The Federal government owns fewer than 400 NHLs (16%).  The laws that govern property rights still apply to designated Landmarks.  Designation of a property as a National Historic Landmark does not give ownership of the property to the Federal government or the National Park Service.

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Bears Ears Natl Monument & Gold Butte Natl Monument

How President Obama Has Protected Our Sacred Land for Future Generations

By Russell Begaye, President of the Navajo Nation

I am very proud to be both Navajo and American. As the President of the Navajo Nation, I’ve dedicated my life to ensuring that, as a Navajo, my story — and our stories — are part of our collective American history. Today, I want to share one of those stories with you.

There was a time when our nations, American and Navajo, were at war with each other — when the U.S. Cavalry forcibly rounded up Navajo men, women, and children, and marched them at gunpoint to a foreign land hundreds of miles away. During this time, some of my Navajo ancestors successfully hid at a sacred place of prayer, shelter, and fortitude: the Bears Ears area of Utah.

This beautiful piece of land stretches for over a million acres across the southern edge of the state. Its ancient cliff dwellings, ceremonial sites, abundant rock art, countless cultural artifacts, winding creek beds, and expanses of desert land, contain the great history of my nation.

This place served to protect my family then, just as it has protected many Native American people throughout the years.

Today, President Barack Obama has signed a proclamation to protect this land as a national monument for future generations of Navajo people and for all Americans. Thanks to his action, this land will be finally given the legal reverence and protection it deserves.

This action reflects the President’s profound record on conservation: He has done more than any other president in history to set aside more land and water for the future.

But it is also in accordance with his actions to elevate the voices of Native people. Five sovereign tribal nations petitioned to have this irreplaceable land conserved.

Bears Ears National Monument is sacred not only to the Diné people, but also our Hopi, Ute, and Zuni neighbors. These tribes came together in an unprecedented show of unity to conserve these lands for future generations of all Americans. This intertribal coalition also pushed for a new standard for national monuments and tribal involvement.

Thankfully, President Obama and his team listened to our sovereign nations.

With this step to protect and conserve these irreplaceable lands, he has set a new precedent for national monument tribal collaborative management. And he has strengthened the relationship between our Navajo and American nations.

As both Navajo and American, I am proud our President listened to a sovereign appeal and acted to preserve our sacred land for future generations.

Thank you for listening,

Russell Begaye

President, Navajo Nation


Wednesday, December 28, 2016
President Obama signs a proclamation establishing the
Bears Ears National Monument & Gold Butte National Monument





Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area

White House Announces Actions to Protect Natural and Cultural Resources in Alaskan Arctic Ocean

December 09, 2016

Since taking office, President Obama has worked to protect the Arctic’s natural and cultural resources and the communities that rely upon them through the use of science-based decision making, enhanced coordination of Federal Arctic management, efforts to combat illegal fishing, and revitalization of the process for establishing new marine sanctuaries.  Building on this effort, today, President Obama is announcing new steps to enhance the resilience of the Alaskan Arctic environment and the sustainability of Alaskan native communities with the creation of the Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area.

In addition to today’s protections, the Obama Administration is announcing approximately $30 million in philanthropic commitments for projects in rural northern Alaska and Canada.  These projects include investments over the next three years related to shipping, ecosystem science, community and ecological resilience, and tribal engagement.  Earlier this week, the Department of Commerce deployed an Economic Development Assessment Team to Nome, Alaska to help the region diversify, grow its economy, and address challenges related to climate change and community resilience.

Today’s actions are also supportive of the March 2016 U.S.-Canada Joint Statement on Climate, Energy, and Arctic Leadership and make substantial progress on its objectives of  conserving Arctic biodiversity through science-based decision-making, incorporating indigenous science and traditional knowledge into decision-making, and supporting strong Arctic communities. These actions employ science-based leadership to improve marine and coastal resilience and sustain our Nation’s precious natural resources.


Press Statement of the Association of Village Council Presidents : Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area

December 9, 2016

The Obama administration announced today its decision to create the Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area. The Association of Village Council Presidents (AVCP), a tribal consortium representing 56 Alaska Native Tribes in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, joined the efforts of the Bering Sea Elders Group and Kawerak, Inc., in requesting White House action to protect these vital waters from the damaging effects of climate change and industrial threats to the subsistence way of life critical to the food security of the region. The President’s Order outlines a policy that recognizes the mutual relationship our Tribes have to these waters, and the importance of purposeful management of the resources in this area as the ocean temperatures rise.

“The Bering Sea is like our grocery store and we were born knowing the importance of these waters. Our task is to protect it,” said Vivian Korthuis, CEO of the Association of Village Council Presidents, and Tribal Member of the Native Village of Emmonak. “AVCP is grateful that the President heard our request.”


Kawerak, Inc. News Release: Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area

December 9, 2016

Today, President Obama issued an Executive Order to safeguard the Bering Sea and establish the Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area. The Order is monumental to the Bering Strait and the Arctic, as the protection of the Bering Sea and its resources is essential to the survival of the people of the Arctic. The Tribes in Alaska were the first natural resource managers, the first participants in arctic commerce, and the first enviromenmentalists. For us, a healthy ecosystem is a matter of food security, and it also allows us to maintain our unique cultural identity and rich heritage. This Executive Order will protect the vital subsistence economies that have lasted for millennia.


President Obama Signs Executive Order to Protect the Northern Bering Sea

December 9, 2016

The Obama Administration announced today a landmark decision to create the Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area. This unprecedented action is in direct response to the Tribes along the coast of the Bering Sea, who petitioned the President for this protection. The Bering Sea Elders Group, with delegates from 39 tribes, passed a resolution as one voice and traveled to Washington, D.C. to ask the Administration for help. The Administration heard us and today issued an Executive Order that recognizes and respects the peoples of our region and our dependence on the Bering Sea.

In addition to the Bering Sea Elders Group, the White House action was requested by the two tribal consortiums collectively representing 76 tribes – Kawerak, Inc. and the Association of Village Council Presidents.

The Executive Order establishes an important set of policies aimed at protecting the people of our region and our subsistence way of life in the face of increasing effects of climate change. It also, for the first time, creates a formal role for Tribes in the decision making so as to ensure that our voices continue to be heard as we deal with the effects of climate change and increasing pressures on our resources.

“It is my honor to thank President Obama for signing this Executive Order to help our Tribes,” said Harry Lincoln, Yup’ik elder from Tununak and Chair of Bering Sea Elders Group. “It is the Native elders’ vision that the northern Bering Sea and the resources that our people rely on be protected because they are the foundation of our culture and way of life. We have been here since time immemorial and it is our responsibility to pass our rich heritage on to future generations.”

For more:


10 Key Reasons to Protect the Northern Bering Sea and Bering Strait

  1. Culture, Food Security, Economy
  2. Way of Life
  3. Migration and the Rhythm of Sea Ice
  4. Underwater Soundscape
  5. Traditional Ecological Knowledge
  6. Variability
  7. Small-Scale Local Fisheries
  8. Front Edge of Climate Change
  9. Uncertainty
  10. Shared Vision

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Natl Historic Preservation Act of 1966 – 50th Anniversary

The  (NHPA) (Public Law 89-665; 54 U.S.C. 300101 et seq.) is legislation intended to preserve historical and archaeological sites in the United States of America. The act created the National Register of Historic Places, the list of National Historic Landmarks, and the State Historic Preservation Offices.

Senate Bill 3035, the National Historic Preservation Act, was signed into law on October 15, 1966, and is the most far-reaching preservation legislation ever enacted in the United States. Several amendments have been made since. Among other things, the act requires federal agencies to evaluate the impact of all federally funded or permitted projects on historic properties (buildings, archaeological sites, etc.) through a process known as Section 106 Review.

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“The historical and cultural foundations of the Nation should be preserved as a living part of our community life and development in order to give a sense of orientation to the American people . . . the preservation of this irreplaceable heritage is in the public interest so that its vital legacy of cultural, educational, aesthetic, inspirational, economic, and energy benefits will be maintained and enriched for future generations of Americans” – National Historic Preservation Act, 1966

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Sorry but ProPresObama thread comments &
WH daily schedule not available 10/11/16 – 10/16/16


White House Arctic Science Ministerial

White House Arctic Science Ministerial
On September 28, 2016, science ministers from across the globe will gather in Washington, DC, for the first-ever White House Arctic Science Ministerial.

Understanding the rapid changes that are affecting the Arctic—as well as the impacts of these changes on the rest of the world—requires a cooperative, global approach based on research partnerships involving participants from Arctic and non-Arctic nations, including, of course, the people who call the Arctic home. That’s why, on September 28, 2016—just after the one-year anniversary of President Obama’s historic trip to Alaska—the Administration will host the first-ever Arctic Science Ministerial.

The White House Arctic Science Ministerial will bring together ministers of science, chief science advisors, and other high-level officials from countries around the world, as well as representatives from indigenous groups, to expand joint collaborations focused on Arctic science, research, observations, monitoring, and data-sharing. The goals of the event are to advance promising, near-term science initiatives and create a context for increased international scientific collaboration on the Arctic over the longer term.

Specifically, the Ministerial will focus on four key themes:

  1. Arctic Science Challenges and their Regional and Global Implications
  2. Strengthening and Integrating Arctic Observations and Data Sharing
  3. Applying Expanded Scientific Understanding of the Arctic to Build Regional Resilience and Shape Global Responses
  4. Arctic Science as a Vehicle for STEM Education and Citizen Empowerment

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Artic Executive Steering Committee – Twitter


September 28, 2016
White House Arctic Science Ministerial
Washington, DC





3rd Annual Our Ocean Conference

Our Ocean, One Future

Life on Earth depends on the ocean.  A healthy ocean is central to human wellbeing.  The ocean feeds billions of people, employs millions of workers, and generates trillions of dollars in the world economy.

Yet, as vast as our ocean and its resources are, they are not infinite.  And today the ocean is under tremendous pressure from human activity – including unsustainable and illegal fishing, marine pollution, and climate-related impacts.

Secretary of State John Kerry will host the 2016 Our Ocean Conference in Washington, D.C., on September 15 to 16 to catalyze actions to protect our ocean from these threats and to empower a new generation to lead the way toward a healthy and sustainable ocean.

Areas of Focus

  • Marine Protected Areas
  • Climate and Ocean
  • Sustainable Fisheries
  • Marine Pollution

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September 15-16, 2016 @ 9:00 AM EDT
3rd Annual Our Ocean Conference
Washington, D.C.


Live Stream: