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Fort Worden Lifelong Learning Center Public Development Authority

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Effective January 2014 Board meetings will be at 9 AM the 4th Wednesday of each month with a couple of exceptions due to Holidays. Currently scheduled meetings and related documents are listed on the Documents page.

As of August 2013 the FWPDA Google calendar is no longer being maintained, please check the Documents page for meeting schedules.

If you need information or want to confirm a meeting, or for anything else, please Contact a member of the Board or Staff.

The Fort Worden Public Development Authority (FWPDA) is a municipal entity that will manage the built campus area of Fort Worden State Park beginning May 1, 2014. The FWPDA, in partnership with Washington State Parks, will oversee guest services including accommodations in the built housing units, reservations for the entire Park, other visitor services and custodian services. Under the direction of General Manager Michael Deighton, several hospitality positions are now open to interested applicants.

Applications will be accepted until April 1, 2014* and will be reviewed by a three-person committee. Finalists will be interviewed in early April. Successful candidates will be extended a job offer by April 16. Employment will begin as early as April 21, with remaining positions beginning May 1. Full-time positions include an employee benefit package with cost-shared health insurance, generous paid time off and paid holidays, and option to participate in the Washington State Deferred Compensation Program for retirement. The FWPDA is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Interested candidates should provide three copies of:
1) Letter of Interest (You may list multiple positions that you are interested in)
2) Resume and three references to:

Michael Deighton, General Manager
200 Battery Way, Fort Worden
Port Townsend, WA 98368
Please click on the following links to download PDF versions of each job description. Also available: * Positions are posted until filled.

The FWPDA has hired a General Manager, who started work on February 3, 2014. See the related articles in the Port Townsend Leader and the Peninsula Daily News linked from our Recent online news articles about Fort Worden and/or the PDA section.

On August 8, 2013: the Washington State Parks Commission voted to accept the Draft Master Lease with some conditions. Please see the Documents page for the latest schedule of meetings, and to download related documents.

Washington’s state park system is undergoing a shift in its financing.

Revenues from the $30 Discover Pass user fee program created by the Legislature in 2011 have fallen short of expectations, and the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission now has no choice but to make fundamental changes in how it operates state parks, according to a press release.

To help guide the agency during the next decade of transition, the state parks commission has crafted a transformation strategy, which is posted online at

Visit the Washington State Parks YouTube page to see videos about some of Washington's Parks and a Public Service Announcement from Governor Gregoire about supporting State Parks.
Help support Washington State Parks, purchase a Discover Pass. Passes are available at the Fort Worden Park Office, the Coast Artillery Museum at Fort Worden, the Marine Science Center at Fort Worden and some other Fort Worden Partners for $30 without any additional charges.
The Campus
at Fort Worden State Park

A Lifelong Learning Center amidst Historical Buildings, Beaches, Campgrounds, Trails

"New ideas require old buildings."
-- Urban historian Jane Jacobs

Fort Worden's 435 acres, operated for decades as a Washington State Park, include some 100 whitewashed buildings built at the turn of the century. The built Campus of the fort is a National Historic Landmark with performance halls, meeting rooms, classrooms, a dining hall, guest houses and dormitories. The Campus is outlined by a broad parade ground, walkways, winding roads and rows of stately maples. The Campus is surrounded by the rest of the park - broad beaches that reach past the Point Wilson Lighthouse into Admiralty Inlet, densely forested highlands laced by trails and historical embattlements, picnic areas and full-service campgrounds. The park itself is at the edge of Victorian Port Townsend, and at the foot of the vast Olympic National Park.

Over the past five years, a bold collaboration between the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, local government and Centrum, a renowned cultural organization, has created a long-term plan for the future for Fort Worden. Led by a local public corporation called the Public Development Authority, Fort Worden would be weaned from tax support and become self-sustaining. In keeping with a Lifelong Learning Center vision, the current 15 partner organizations operating on the Campus would be enhanced, and new partners would be sought to fill in empty spaces and to launch new educational enterprises.

All partners, existing and new, would be devoted to improving lives through artistic, cultural, wellness, culinary, educational, recreational and trades-oriented programs. Revenues raised would support the facilities and the traditional campgrounds, beaches and trails that have been open to the local and visiting public for generations. The PDA would sustain public access.

This new vision for Fort Worden has become especially important given the serious financial problems faced by Washington State Parks. All parks face cutbacks; many face closure. Fort Worden's public-private partnership model holds promise as a way of sustaining and improving Fort Worden. The PDA, created by the City of Port Townsend, is charged with implementing the long-term plan for the Fort by preserving the Fort's unique historical and recreational resources, and developing the Lifelong Learning Center. One example: the renovation of a little-used barracks, Building 202, into a permanent college center.

Fort Worden will remain a park, always open to campers, hikers, kayakers and beachwalkers. The renovated Campus will be infused with new privately and publicly funded programs devoted to inspirational and transformative learning for people of all ages.

The Campus at Fort Worden: A gathering place for life-changing experiences

Powerpoint link
Click the image above to download a 7MB PDF file of the
PowerPoint Presentation from March 2012.

Washington State Parks has completed a long-range plan effort for Fort Worden. In Part 1, a conceptual plan to establish Fort Worden as a center for life-long learning was completed. Part 2 of the planning effort includes more detailed work in the areas of facilities development, programming, management and governance.

State Parks Long Range Plan: Part 1
State Parks Long Range Plan :Part 2
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Content Updated Mar 17, 2014