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Thursday, September 21, 2023


Dec. 8, 2002 – About a dozen people showed up Sunday at a march in support of Judy Shafer, the V.I. National Park's former deputy superintendent. Shafer was ousted from her job and reassigned to the Southeast Region Headquarters in Atlanta as chief of the cultural resources division for the entire region effective Nov. 12.
"I think they're forcing her out unfairly," Cathy Packo said as the marchers gathered near the children's playground adjacent to the park's visitor's center.
While neither Shafer nor Superintendent John King will comment on the reasons for her transfer, sources close to the issue claim a personality conflict exists between the two.
And the fact that Shafer caught a former volunteer viewing pornographic Web sites in his park office didn't help matters when she reported the incident.
The superintendent and his former deputy did not appear at the march.
A torrential rain brought the small march to a quick halt after about 15 minutes of words in support of Shafer.
"She's an extremely hard worker and she's been wrongly ousted," Bern Putnam said.
Sylvia Weaver called it unfair. She said that Shafer has done a tremendous amount of work for the park, and until recently, she was viewed as a highly valuable employee.
Craig Barshinger claimed that King was unable to deal with "a subordinate doing her job." He said she had fallen victim to the politics of a "good old boy network."
Shafer has spent more than 29 years as a federal employee, with 13 of them at the park on St. John, from 1986 to 1994 and from 1997 until November.
Shafer is on medical leave from the National Park Service because she has a broken ankle.
She remains in park housing; however, the park moved Shafer's belongings out of her park office because she is no longer an employee, King said last week.

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