living fossil

"E" is for Education, Environment and Erickson

Don and Chris Erickson

Educators, artists, and natives of Grantsburg Wisconsin the Erickson's are making a difference in the world by helping others appreciate nature

"Do you remember the scientific name for the Caribou?" Don Erickson grins as he tests his former Junior High School Science students Drs. Robin and Rolfe Radcliffe. The Radcliffes have many fond memories of outdoor adventures with Don over the years. Don has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and Geology Education, and he enjoys sharing his love of scientific knowledge with students, family and friends, inside and outside the classroom. Later, as a Corporate Executive, Don encouraged young people to explore the outdoors by leading wilderness camping and fishing expeditions. With great enthusiasm and dedication Don has taught Wisconsin Hunter Education classes for 35 years. Don has served as a member of the Board and as a volunteer for the Friends of Crex, a charitable organization with a mission to preserve the Crex Meadows ecosystem. Crex is a crown jewel of the Wisconsin Wildlife Refuge system, preserving 30,000 acres of native grassland prairie and wetland habitat reclaimed from failed farming practices. The Crex Meadows Wildlife Education Center and refuge lands are located near the small village of Grantsburg, WI where the Erickson's once lived on their own family farm. Recently retired, Don fills his time with community volunteer activities including the Chairman of the Burnett County Medical Center Hospital Foundation as well as Vice-President of the Living Fossil Board of Directors.

Don and his wife Chris, have traveled extensively around the world and are always eager to learn something new about different cultures and environments. Chris is a retired elementary school teacher who enjoys reading, gardening, traveling, writing, photography and creating art. Chris has had the privilege of working with teachers and students from New Zealand and Costa Rica to Wisconsin and Alaska and always incorporated their adventurous travel experiences into her classroom curriculum. Don and Chris have three grandchildren who enjoy coming to "Camp Grandma" at their northern Wisconsin lake home to fish, watch the annual turtle egg-laying show, create art or build projects, watch eagles fishing, listen to the loons and help injured hummingbirds. The Erickson's Black Labrador "Belle" joins in the fun and has proven to be an excellent hunting companion and member of the family.

And for those still wondering about the scientific name of the caribou, it is Rangifer tarundus!