We’re excited to introduce you to our naturalist, John Scheerens, who will participate in every aspect of the Science at Sea experience and provide us with his amazing insights and knowledge of the region. John is considered the teacher of teachers in Alaska serving as the training consultant for most of the major tour companies throughout Alaska. John has been featured on ABC’s 20/20 and his educational tours have received the highest praise among his peers. We cannot think of the better tour leader for our Science at Sea experience.
About John Scheerens
In his own words…
I grew up in the deserts of Tucson, Arizona. Following military service from 1967-1969 I attended the University of Arizona. I began working in Glacier National Park summers while in college and eventually moved to Montana where I resided for seven years and finished my formal education at the University of Montana with a major in English Literature.
In 1980, I accepted a position with the concessioner at Glacier Bay National Park in Southeast Alaska. Alaska captured my heart, and I have been a resident of Gustavus, Alaska (small community within Glacier Bay NP) ever since. There I raised a daughter; hand built my own home, and embraced the Alaska rural lifestyle. I have been an outdoors person all my life and have come to love and cherish all things Alaskan – fishing, hiking, kayaking, boating, gardening and wildlife watching. I’ve been involved in tourism in one form or another for my entire adult life and for the past twenty-nine years in Alaska. During that time, I have spent a great deal of time learning about Alaska, its natural and cultural history, both in formal and informal educational settings.
I have enjoyed a fairly diverse and varied experience in the tourism business ranging from wilderness guide to general manager of two well known and highly respected resort lodges. For ten years from 1980 to 1989 I served as the Lodge Manager and then Vice President and General Manger of Glacier Bay Lodge, the concession hotel at Glacier Bay National Park. Glacier Bay Lodge was a comprehensive park concession offering lodging, restaurant, gift shops, cocktail lounge, transportation company (7 busses, vans, and baggage services), fishing charters, and two vessel operations ( a day tour boat and overnight tour boat).
I served as general manager of the Kenai Princess Lodge in Cooper Landing, Alaska in 1990 and1991. The Kenai Princess is a premier wilderness resort operated by Princess Tours and includes lodging, restaurant, lounge, tour desk, transportation services, gift shops, and convention facilities.
I returned to Gustavus in 1992 and accepted an operations manager position with Alaska Discovery. Alaska Discovery, at that time, was Alaska’s most well known and celebrated wilderness guiding company. They offered wilderness trips throughout Alaska from the Arctic to Glacier Bay via kayak, river raft, or hiking. During that time I guided a number of wilderness trips in addition to my administrative duties.
In 2003, I formed Alaska-In-Depth, a small tour consulting business which I currently still own and operate. Alaska-In-Depth organizes and operates educationally based tours exclusively in Alaska for various clients, principally Elderhostel, Osher Life Long Learning, and the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Additionally, Alaska-In-Depth provides educational workshops specializing in the training of naturalists and customer service for tourism employees and management.