The National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) was established in 1919 to protect and enhance the National Park System and to be the pure guardian of the mandate to protect the system’s landmarks and landscapes, unimpaired for future generations.
The nonpartisan NPCA works on the ground, in and around our national parks, conducting research, and working hand-in-hand with National Park Service staff, community leaders, park advocates, and state and federal legislators to ensure that our parks are welcoming and well funded, well managed and well protected for our children and grandchildren.
One of our founders, Stephen Mather, was also the first director of the National Park Service, established in 1916. Mather and others saw a clear need for an independent voice outside of the federal government to protect America’s national parks. Since our establishment, NPCA has been the leading voice of the American people in protecting and enhancing the park system’s superlative examples of America’s natural, cultural, and historic heritage. NPCA and its more than 750,000 members and supporters are committed to preserving the most diverse park system in the world for us now and for those who will come after.