Life Member Profile: Jonathan Brinkerhoff

Courtesy of my parents, I became active outdoors at an early age both in the woods behind our rural Massachusetts home and camping / hiking in Maine where, when I got too tired, I was introduced to backpacking, of sorts, by my mom. Starting with one of the first VW vans imported to the US in the early 50’s, my family always had a van or motorhome that got heavy use during two years in Europe and throughout the US.

After a family move to California in 1965, I started backpacking in the San Gabrielle and Sierra Nevada Mountains. For high school graduation, I asked to attend Northwest Outward Bound, and spent three weeks backpacking in the Oregon Cascades.

I majored in Biology in college and became an elementary school teacher on California’s central coast focused on science education, while my camping trips expanded to cover the whole of the western US, Canada and Alaska as well as overseas.

Throughout all these experiences, the common thread was wonderment and valuing of the natural world. I see humankind as intimately linked to planet Earth with a moral and spiritual obligation to respect and maintain its ecology.

I’ve been a member of the Sierra Club since the late 70’s except for a brief interlude when I earned a PhD and lacked the funds. With so much of what I hold dear under attack by the current administration, I decided it was time to become a Sierra Club life member.

Life Member Profile: Jonathan Brinkerhoff