Two officials at Sagamore Hill National Historic Site will continue with their duties after a procedural inquiry by the National Park Service (NPS) came up empty.
No misconduct was found in the actions of Superintendent Kelly Fuhrmann and Chief of Interpretation Martin Christiansen, and the inquiry is closed, according to the regional supervisor of the NPS. Whistle-blowers, who chose to remain anonymous, levied accusations against Fuhrmann that he inappropriately used government equipment for personal gain. Meanwhile, Christiansen was accused of nepotism after securing a position for his wife as the park’s bookstore manager.
The inquiry was conducted by the National Park Service Northeast Regional Director, the Deputy Regional Director and by a Law Enforcement Ranger from Colonial National Historical Park in Virginia.
A representative at Sagamore Hill, who chose not to be named, responded to calls for comment by stating, “The Northeast Region of the National Park Service (NPS) was made aware of the allegations. The NPS takes these kinds of allegations seriously. An inquiry was completed because we are always looking for ways to improve and sometimes it is important to have a fresh set of eyes looking at our processes. We will continue to improve in our communications with staff, partners and the community in which we serve. We sincerely appreciate these matters being brought to our attention.”
However, the individuals who first requested an investigation—a National Parks Service ranger and a ranger at the site—said they still believe misconduct took place and they will continue their efforts to hold Sagamore Hill representatives accountable.
“I believe this is a cover up at the highest level. It’s outrageous,” said the ranger. “I’ll go forward to Congressman Tom Suozzi’s office, as well as to the Washington [D.C.] office of the Parks Service. [Sagamore Hill officials] will be held accountable for their actions.”