OTRD EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SHELLEY ZUMWALT NAMES STERLING ZEARLEY DIRECTOR OF STATE PARKS
OKLAHOMA CITY (June 27, 2023) – Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation (OTRD) Executive Director Shelley Zumwalt has named Sterling Zearley the new Director of State Parks.
“With more than two decades of experience in the State Parks system, Sterling Zearley will be an invaluable member of the agency,” Executive Director Shelley Zumwalt said. “He brings with him a wealth of state experience and valuable industry knowledge. He is the right person at the right time for the job, and I’m confident he will help drive us towards success.”
Zearley is a Poteau, Oklahoma native that spent 23 years serving the state with the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department. He started his career as a Wildlife Curator before being promoted to Park Supervisor, Park Manager and eventually Northeast Regional Manager.
“I’m thrilled to return to state service at the agency where I spent the majority of my professional career,” said Zearley. “I’ve always had a passion for our 38 state parks that I grew up visiting, and I can’t wait to work with my colleagues at the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department to ensure the parks are a top destination for all Oklahomans and visitors from around the world for years to come.”
In 2007 Zearly left OTRD to be Executive Director at the Oklahoma Public Employees Association. There he served as chief executive officer for 16 years where he was responsible to Oklahoma’s state employees to protect their interest at the capitol and in their workplace.
Zearley’s first day will be June 30.