2017 Southern EE'er of the Year - Nathan Taxel
Nathan spearheaded the Ocean Institute’s partnership with the Ranch at Laguna Beach to create a summer campout program that provides tuition free overnight EE experiences for about 300 underprivilege students a year. The student participants come from communities all over Southern California including San Bernadino, Santa Ana, Los Angeles, and Long Beach. The campouts include teambuilding, natural science, and trips to the beach. All the meals, equipment, and transportation to and from their neighborhoods are included at no cost to the participants and their chaperones. One 2016 chaperone wrote that “It was an incredible experience, not only fun filled but educational, which can be trying together but you guys pulled it off so well that my kids had no idea they learned so much.”
Nathan has consistently shown leadership, compassion, ingenuity and a wonderful sense of fun to bring outdoor education to life for the students going through our Ocean Institute programs. He inspires us all with his "can do" attitude and has enthusiastically accepted roles outside of his traditional job description for the good of the organization.
Nathan is a man that I would feel confident getting lost in the wilderness with, and I am certain that I can count on him for any professional challenge that comes his way. Underlining all of this professional competence and good humor is a good man, good father, good husband and good friend.
Nominated by: Mary Lawson