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Robert Stanton

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Information about Robert Stanton

Profile image of Robert Stanton

Profession

Category:
PoliticalMakers
CivicMakers
Occupation(s):
Federal Government Official

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Steak, Potatoes
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
National Parks
Favorite Quote:
Mankind Differ As The Waves But Are As One As The Sea

Birthplace

Born:
9/22/1940
Birth Location:
Fort Worth, Texas

Profession

Category:
PoliticalMakers
CivicMakers
Occupation(s):
Federal Government Official

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Steak, Potatoes
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
National Parks
Favorite Quote:
Mankind Differ As The Waves But Are As One As The Sea

Birthplace

Born:
9/22/1940
Birth Location:
Fort Worth
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Biography

Robert George Stanton was born on September 22, 1940 in Forth Worth, Texas. His mother was a short order cook and his father was a hay contractor. He grew up in Mosier Valley, one of the oldest African American communities in Texas, settled by free slaves. He graduated from I.M. Terrell High School in Forth Worth in 1959.

He earned his bachelor's of science degree from Huston-Tillotson College in Austin in 1963. The summer of his junior year in college he began his career with the National Park Service. Borrowing $250, he bought a train ticket to Wyoming and a park ranger's uniform and worked as a seasonal ranger at Grand Teton National Park. Stanton, along with several other African Americans, was recruited by then Interior Secretary, Stewart Udall who traveled to predominately Black college campuses recruiting students.

In 1963, Stanton began his graduate studies at Boston University and went back to Huston-Tillotson to work as the director of public relations and alumni affairs from 1964 until 1966. That year, he took a full time job with the Park Service as a personnel management and public information specialist in the Washington, D.C. headquarters office. In 1969, he became a management assistant and in 1970, he was appointed superintendent of Virgin Islands National Park in St. Thomas. In 1974, Stanton became deputy regional director of the Southeast Region of the National Park Service in Atlanta and in 1976 he returned to Washington, D.C. as assistant director of park operations. In 1978, Stanton was named deputy regional director of the National Capital Region, where he remained until 1986. In 1987, he returned to headquarters as associate director for operations, and in 1988, he became the first African American to serve as director of the National Park Service. Stanton's nomination for the post by former President Clinton was the first that had to be approved by the U.S. Senate…he was confirmed unanimously. He retired from that position in 2003.

Stanton currently works as an adjunct professor at Texas A&M teaching courses on conservation. He has also taught at Yale University and been the recipient of numerous awards for his civic work and environmental stewardship.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Robert Stanton's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Robert Stanton lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Robert Stanton describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Robert Stanton describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Robert Stanton talks about his Mosier Valley ancestry and his grandparents
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Robert Stanton describes his earliest childhood memory and names his siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Robert Stanton talks about the Mosier Valley community in Texas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Robert Stanton remembers efforts to improve African American children's schooling in Mosier Valley, Texas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Robert Stanton describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Robert Stanton describes his experience at Mosier Valley Elementary School in Texas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Robert Stanton talks about early adolescence and his brother's death in the Korean War
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Robert Stanton talks about his adolescent influences and busing to I.M. Terrell High School in Fort Worth, Texas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Robert Stanton describes his high school experience in Fort Worth, Texas and his aspirations as a teenager
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Robert Stanton remembers Huston-Tillotson College in Austin, Texas
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Robert Stanton remembers being recruited to work for the U.S. Department of the Interior in the summer of 1962
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Robert Stanton remembers working in Grand Teton National Park during the summer of 1962
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Robert Stanton talks about working for Huston-Tillotson College in Austin, Texas and returning to the National Park Service
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Robert Stanton talks about the beginning of his career at the National Park Service and meeting his wife
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Robert Stanton talks about working as superintendent of the U.S. Virgin Islands National Park
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Robert Stanton talks about his work as deputy regional director of the Southeast Region and assistant director of the National Park Service
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Robert Stanton recalls his tenure as deputy regional director of the National Capital Region of the National Park Service
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Robert Stanton talks about climbing the National Park Service hierarchy to serve as the director
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Robert Stanton remembers the director of National Park Service nomination process
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Robert Stanton describes his accomplishments as director of the National Park Service
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Robert Stanton describes congressional oversight hearings he experienced as director of the National Park Service
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Robert Stanton reflects upon African American's interaction with the National Park Service
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Robert Stanton talks about challenges facing the National Park Service
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Robert Stanton talks about what he would like to have done as director of the National Park Service
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Robert Stanton talks about the National Park Service's role in preserving African American history
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Robert Stanton talks about his favorite national parks and the parks he has yet to visit
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Robert Stanton recalls teaching at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut and bringing students to the World Park Congress
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Robert Stanton talks about his current consultation and board work
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Robert Stanton reflects upon how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Robert Stanton reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Robert Stanton reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Robert Stanton narrates his photograph, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Robert Stanton narrates his photographs, pt.2