Staff Spotlight, Lynda Smith
Assistant Park Manager, Lynda Smith
Henderson Beach State Park
Assistant Park Manager Lynda Smith spent her childhood summers traveling around the country, camping with her family in state and national parks.
She remembers the excitement she felt the first time she saw a park ranger. Looking out from the top of a fire observation tower, she was awed that regular people — rangers — were responsible for protecting and sharing America’s natural resources.
Her experiences in parks made Lynda realize that preserving and caring for the environment is all she would ever want to do. Now, as a ranger for the Florida Park Service, Lynda thinks she has the greatest job in the world.
“Henderson Beach State Park is my home and my heart,” Lynda said. “It is one of the most splendid places in Florida. Everything here is connected, from the crystal white sand, animals, sea life to the coastal scrub.”
Now, Lynda’s favorite part of being a park ranger is connecting people with Henderson Beach by sharing the science, history and beauty of the Real Florida.
“My greatest joy each day is seeing the kids enjoying themselves in the park and watching their faces light up when they see me or the other rangers,” Lynda said. “I hear them say to their parents ‘Oh look, it’s a park ranger!’ It reminds me of how I felt when I was a kid. That’s why we do our job, so that we can inspire the next generation to love and value Florida’s environment, wildlife and heritage.”