CSPRA Honorary California State Park Ranger - 1981
James Whitehead began a career with the Department of Parks and Recreation in 1947.
After working his way "through the ranks," he became Superintendent of the Department's southern district which included the Los Angeles and San Diego metropolitan areas.
Mr. Whitehead has been honored many times for his park and related conservation efforts which include the following: District Service Award for efforts in ocean lifeguard and beach safety by the California State Lifeguard Association (1965)
Desert Protective Council Annual Award of Merit (1977)
Commendation from the California Legislature Joint Rules Committee for dedicated Public Service (1977)
Commendation from San Diego County Board of Supervisors for dedicated park work (1977)
Formulated the Anza Borrego Committee (1965)
Awarded commendation for the Junior Lifeguard Program
Awarded commendation Orange County Regional Boy Scout Council (1965 - 1978)
Jim Whitehead's other park and conservation efforts have served a wide spectrum of organizations from the Save-the-Redwoods League to the Desert Protective Council and from the Sierra Club to Greenpeace. Mr. Whitehead retired from the Department of Parks and Recreation in 1977, but in January 1979, was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown to the California State Park & Recreation Commission.
In addition to the above accomplishments, those who have known Mr. Whitehead, both in and outside of public service, know the inspiring, dedicated conservationist leadership he provided throughout his career with the Department of Parks and Recreation, and continued to provide with panache in his "retirement."