Gov. Doug Burgum appointed Andrea Travnicek to lead the North Dakota Department of Parks and Recreation effective May 29, 2020, citing her extensive leadership experience and long history of resource management at the local, state and federal levels.
Travnicek returned to North Dakota after nearly three years of service in top leadership positions at the U.S. Department of the Interior, where she most recently served as deputy assistant secretary for land and minerals management. Travnicek also served as Interior’s principal deputy assistant secretary for fish and wildlife and parks, overseeing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. National Park Service. Prior to that, she served as a senior policy advisor for natural resources in the North Dakota Governor’s Office from 2010 to 2016 under then-Gov. John Hoeven and then-Gov. Jack Dalrymple.
Travnicek’s career spans more than 15 years of experience in natural resources, conservation, energy, agriculture and public policy. At the U.S. Department of the Interior, she had oversight of bureaus with up to 17,000 staff members and budgets up to $3.2 billion.
Travnicek earned a bachelor’s degree in natural resource management and zoology, a master’s degree in natural resources management and a doctorate in philosophy, all from North Dakota State University. Travnicek is originally from Minot.
The North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department has about 60 full-time team members and 16 long-term seasonal staff and a biennial budget of $43 million to manage and operate 15 statewide parks and recreation areas, enriching generations through experiences that connect people and places. The department actively promotes and supports access to North Dakota’s great outdoors through a diversity of recreation opportunities and sustainably managed resources. The department is additionally responsible for off-highway vehicle planning and safety programs, snowmobile safety programs and trails, the Nature Preserves Act and outdoor recreation grants and statewide recreation planning.