• Our mission is to preserve parks today and create park stewards for tomorrow. Since 1983, we have completed more than 100 park projects in 33 states. Furthermore, to foster future park enthusiasts and stewards, we created our Buddy Bison School Program and Kids to Parks Day, our nationwide day of play. This video summarizes our accomplishments thanks to your generous support!​

    Mapping our progress


  • Since 1983, NPT has supported and assisted in acquiring inholdings and in developing public and private partnerships to promote the acquisition and preservation of parks, wildlife refuges, historic landmarks, public lands, and water ways. We have completed more than 100 park projects benefiting 49 national park units and other public lands in 33 states. To learn more about about our work and how you can get involved, contact Dick Ring, NPT Park Projects Director.

  • Buddy Bison® School Program: Because Kids Need Parks and Parks Need Kids

    The Buddy Bison school program was created in 2009 to engage diverse children from Title I schools with their local, state and national parks to teach environmental education and the numerous benefits of outdoor recreation. If parks are to survive, the face of those parks must change and under-served communities must have access to these local cultural and environmental resources. More than 80% of the students in the Buddy Bison school program qualify for free or reduced-priced lunch, predominantly in inner city communities. This program has been used in 60 schools across the country in grades pre-K through 8th in public, public charter and private schools across the country (20 states and Washington D.C.).

    This experiential learning program enhances existing school curricula throughout the year with emphasis on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) as well as history, language arts, reading, geography, the arts, and outdoor recreation. Students also learn about the careers of professionals who support our parks-- and the importance of stewarding our public lands. And in addition to bringing kids to parks, we bring parks to kids by arranging schools visits from our many conservation partners.

    To learn more about how you can get involved, contact Billy Schrack, NPT Director of Youth Programs.

NPT is proud to announce the newest addition to our Leadership Council – Michael Soukup.

Mike was the Chief Scientist for the National Park System (NPS) for 12 years and was the key architect of the Natural Resource Challenge – the NPS vision for approaching the next century of rapid environmental change. That program initiated a 13-agency Cooperative Ecosystem Studies (CESU) Network with over 300 academic partners, 19 research learning centers, and a long-term faunal/floral inventory and monitoring system for the 270 natural resource parks. Most recently, Mike is the past president and CEO of the Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park; he currently serves on several boards and as director of science for the Schoodic Institute.

We are delighted to welcome Mike Soukup as our newest member of the Leadership Council," stated Chuck Knauss, NPT board member and chair of the Leadership Council. "Mike's expertise in the ecosystems of our national parks and dedication to education will be a tremendous asset for our land preservation work and for our Buddy Bison environmental education program.” Mike agreed to serve on the Leadership Council because, in his own words, “the National Park Trust can be a valuable asset in assuring a bright future for national parks and I hope to help however I can.”

Mike was also the former director of research at Everglades National Park. His personal research targeted lake and marsh biogeochemistry and restoration. Mike continues to explore the role that national parks can play for greater impact on the future landscape, as they are superb natural laboratories and inspirational sites for lifelong learning. Mike’s experience and vision will be a wonderful compliment to NPT’s Leadership Council. Thanks to Mike for giving of his time and knowledge so generously.