Rocky Ripple Course Director, Fire Chief
As a kid, Jack spent lots of time exploring the backwoods of southeastern Kentucky, hiking through the forest, kayaking on the lake and catching lots of little critters along the way. As a teen and young adult, Jack helped run youth programs at McCormick’s Creek State Park, where he still loves the terrain and trail system. His friend and mentor, Chris Byrd, helped Jack pave his way into the naturalist community and showed him what it means to be a mentor for your students.
From there, Jack spent 3.5 years in Washington state attending and then working at Alderleaf Wilderness College getting fully immersed in the naturalist experience and gaining tons of valuable, life-long skills. He then spent 4.5 years in Central Texas, working at Earth Native Wilderness School as an instructor. During his time at Earth Native, he really found his voice and confidence in teaching.
When moving back home to spend time with family, Jack came across White Pine. He researched, talked to friends and ultimately decided that White Pine would be the perfect place to continue sharing his passion for the outdoors.
Jack feels that the most inspiring part of being an outdoor educator is being able to facilitate lifelong memories for students as they progress in their skills. Things like catching your first fish, or first fire by friction. His favorite memory so far at White Pine has been crafting a throw stick from start to finish with the Flying Squirrels. He loves the mystery of Mother Nature, and how anytime he goes out into the woods, there is something amazing waiting to be discovered.
Jack considers himself a jack-of-most-trades, but has specialized in tracking and trailing, and loves to study bird language and friction fire techniques. He would love to further his knowledge in navigation – both natural and with a map/compass.
When he’s not at White Pine, Jack enjoys spending time with his family, playing board games and watching movies. He also enjoys sports, as he spent a lot of his childhood playing a wide variety of sports. He dreams of someday having his own homestead that he can raise a family on.
- Level 1 Track & Sign with CyberTracker
- Level 2 Trailing with CyberTracker
- Archery Level 1 Instructor
- Permaculture Design
- Food Handler Certificate
- Wilderness First Aid