Where were you born and where do you live now?
Born in the United States in rural Northern Wisconsin. Currently live in Colorado with frequent trips (1500 miles one way) to the boyhood farm where my roots were first established.
How did you become a Christian and did camp play a role in your spiritual development?
I was “scared into the Kingdom” by a hell-fire-and-brimstone traveling evangelist who was holding meetings in the little country church where my aunt was the pastor…a couple of the best things (conversion and lady pastor) that ever happened to me. Between my sophomore and junior year in college I took a summer off from being an ironworker (where I earned good money to return in the fall to another year of college) to work at a Christian camp. There I committed my life to full time ministry and will never forget the little caveat in my prayer of commitment. “Lord, if possible, I sure would like to do that service in Christian camping.” Look at my comments below and smile.
Tell us about your family.
Raised by a single mother who had enough sense to live on the side of Jesus’ grace, and leave my father and raise me and my four younger brothers in a loving Christian home. Jo Ann and I married in 1968. She is a registered nurse, but has worked 35 years (and is still doing so) as a sales representative…a job and schedule that has accommodated my rigorous ministry responsibilities and raising a family. Many of us could say similar things about our spouses, but most of them are not recognized for this service, so I have chosen to include a picture of us, rather than just me. We have three grown children, two boys and a girl, and five grandchildren…spread among the three families. Our kids and their spouses all know the Lord as their Savior, are active in wonderful churches, have good educations/degrees, are living productive Christian lives and welcome us into their homes with great love. This is truly a blessing and joy.
What role(s) do you have in Christian camping? How have you been involved in CCI?
Retired. Camp director for nine years; on the staff of Christian Camping International/USA (CCI/USA) for five years as Director of Leadership Development and Certification; Principal of a consulting firm providing services for Christian Camps, Conference and Retreat Centers; President of CCI/USA (CCCA) for 19 years; and Founder and President of the Christian Camping Foundation. Served on the Board of Directors for CCI/USA while a camp director; currently on the Board of Directors for CCI-Worldwide; Chairman of CCI-Worldwide Archives Committee.
What do you do on your day off?
This question has always been foreign to me. I take breaks when I need them with no structure or regimen. I have lived that way all of my adult life. I like to fish, do yard work, cut firewood, and do road trips in the car.
Besides the Bible, what is your favorite book?
Two classics…Secular: The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker Christian and Spiritual Leadership by J. Oswald Sanders
What kind of music do you like? Any favorite recording artists or song?
Classic country, Gospel quartet music, and the pop music of the late 1950’s and early 1960’s still are my favorites.
What is your favorite Bible verse? Any story that tells us why?
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.” Romans 12:1-3
These three verses, if properly understood and executed, render a complete servant of Christ. Often verse 3 is left off in this citing…so tragic, for therein lies the key to proper application among people.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
Success is best achieved when you surround yourself with people who passionately share your mission, BUT are very different than you in the way they go about fulfilling it.
What else should we know about you?