Jim Ekins started his service career early, volunteering with his parents doing trail maintenance with the Florida Trail Association. He later earned a bachelor's in Natural Resource Management from Western Carolina U. Throughout his twenties, he was a Park Ranger at Canyonlands NP in Utah, a ski bum in Colorado, trekked to K2 in Pakistan, and worked two seasons at McMurdo Station in Antarctica and finally earned a Masters in Community and Regional (Environmental) Planning from UOregon.
Jim's Master's Thesis asked why substantive volunteers quit active participation with nonprofit Oregon Watershed Councils. He later managed a 100+ acre ecological restoration project in the Willamette valley. He began volunteering with Moscow, ID's Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute (PCEI) in 2006, and the next year was PCEI's Community Outreach Specialist AmeriCorps Member.
Currently, Jim is in his fifth year as the University of Idaho's Service-Learning and Internship Coordinator, and is exploring the connection between human- ecological-impoverishment through a Ph.D. program in Conservation Social Sciences. In whatever little bit of spare time he has left, he can be found open-canoeing (whitewater and flat-water), skijoring, running, and backpacking with his dogs, a border collie named Sonny and a lab-mix, Holly.