Jamie Schurbon, ACD's Watershed Projects Manager, has lived a rich and varied life. He grew up in rural Iowa, earning his bachelor's degree from Iowa State University before moving to South Carolina to complete his Master's in Environmental Biology. He spent that time studying reptiles and amphibians in and around the Hell Hole Swamp. After school, he held a variety of short term natural resources jobs that took him from the mangroves of the Florida Keys, to the South Dakota Badlands, to coastal barrier islands. Ultimately, he decided to return to the Midwest and started his first full time position as a technician at the Anoka Conservation District.
Because of his diverse experiences with different environments, it makes sense that instead of a single favorite place in Minnesota, Jamie enjoys the variety, including the Boundary Waters lakes, southeast Minnesota trout streams, northern forests, and prairies. Locally, he especially enjoys spending time on and around the Rum River for its good fishing, quality habitat, and because it is a scenic and quiet getaway.
In his time away from work, Jamie enjoys coaching youth baseball, teaching confirmation classes at his church, playing softball, and working on home improvement projects. Some recent projects have included a kitchen renovation and a canoe rack. Jamie never finds himself short of new projects as one project always seems to turn into another. The old copper plumbing from a kitchen remodel, for example, was then crafted into jewelry.
Jamie indulges his love of the outdoors through hunting and fishing and is also a member of a few sporting organizations including the Isanti County Sportsman's Club, where outdoor enthusiasts both promote conservation and enjoy outdoor activities. Jamie, along with his wife and two sons (ages 11 and 14), have even raised ducks every summer for the last four years.
When asked to share a memorable story of local conservation efforts, Jamie had this to say:
"During my 20 years at ACD I've especially learned a lot from the "old timers" who grew up in the area. I find that today's conservation efforts are not all that different from the past, and these efforts do make a difference. For example, Andover resident, WWII veteran, and former teacher Lyle Bradley once described to me how he flew up and down the Rum River corridor to identify feedlots and dumps on the shoreline. The cleanup that followed made a difference and is a testament to what a committed person can do!"