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Sandburg site has new superintendent

Pauline Angelakis Pauline Angelakis

A 30-year National Park Service veteran who has worked in 13 park service postings has been named superintendent of the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site, the  National Park Service announced. Pauline “Polly” Angelakis will take her new post on May 13.

“Polly has a solid background in literary studies, interpretation and civic engagement that seems ideal for managing Carl Sandburg’s home,” Southeast Regional Director Stan Austin said. “She will be a great addition to the park and surrounding community.”
Angelakis considers her new appointment a “dream job” for an English major.

“Carl Sandburg’s writings demonstrate the power of the written word," she said. "He provided a voice for people who struggled to be heard. I’m excited to work with our staff, partners, and community members to promote this vital legacy.”
Angelakis was inspired to become a park ranger after hiking through Hawaii's Haleakalā crater while in college. Since then, she has worked at eleven parks and two regional offices during her 30-year career with the National Park Service. She spent the first eight years as a seasonal employee and has worked as a frontline interpretive supervisor, volunteer coordinator, and education specialist. She later assumed positions of increasing responsibility, including serving as regional interpretive specialist and volunteer coordinator for the NPS National Capital Region, acting regional chief of interpretation for the Intermountain and National Capital Regions, and site manager for two sites administered by the George Washington Memorial Parkway. Angelakis has been chief of interpretation at Haleakalā National Park since 2012 and also completed temporary assignments there as acting superintendent.
 Her NPS career has also included time working at Acadia National Park, Assateague Island National Seashore, Everglades National Park, Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park, Olympic National Park, Salem Maritime National Historic Site, Shenandoah National Park, and the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial.

A native of Massachusetts, Angelakis graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts in 1987 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She is a 2007 graduate of the NPS Mid-level Management Development Program and a lifetime Girl Scouts member. She is married to Alan Willis, an electrical engineering consultant. The couple enjoys hiking, water sports, theater, volunteer work, and traveling. Both are excited about exploring the Southeast, moving closer to family, and experiencing more adventures with their nieces and nephew

Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service, was authorized in 1968 and celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year. The site preserves the farm home of the Pulitzer prize-winning poet, historian, Lincoln biographer and social advocate, Carl Sandburg. Sandburg provided a popular voice for the American people of the twentieth century and still speaks to us through his words, songs and the beauty and serenity embodied in Connemara. The park is located three miles south of Hendersonville off U.S. 225 on Little River Road, and is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., daily. For further information, please telephone 828-693-4178, or visit