A newcomer to the region, Jason Boerger is drawing on 15 years of park experience in Ohio—ranging from education and maintenance to management and administration—to guide Wildlife Prairie Park along a path of change as its new executive director. The Dayton native fell in love with nature at an early age, serving as a Boy Scout and park volunteer in his youth. He earned a B.S. in environmental science from Green State University before going on to become a naturalist for various district and state parks and chief law enforcement officer at MetroParks of Butler County. Since moving to central Illinois, Boerger says he is amazed at the level of community support shown for our beloved Wildlife Prairie Park.

  1. What do you do when you want to relax? Sit around a campfire with my family.
  2. What would you say to your 20-year-old self? If you always aim to exceed expectations, you will rarely fail to meet them.
  3. Famous person, dead or alive, you’d like to meet: I started my career in parks as a naturalist, teaching park visitors about nature. I would have liked to meet Steve Erwin (the Crocodile Hunter) because I believe he was one of the best naturalists and animal advocates of our time.
     
  4. Which living person do you most admire? I am lucky to have two wonderful role models who I have always admired: my parents.
     
  5. Childhood dream job: At a very young age, I wanted to be a chef. I regularly made myself omelets while I was still in kindergarten, and I still enjoy cooking today.
     
  6. Favorite meal: I was once a waiter at Joe’s Crab Shack, and ever since, I have loved crab cakes.
     
  7. Favorite treat: I can never turn down a good piece of cheesecake.
     
  8. The one TV show I don’t usually tell people I watch is… COPS. I used to be chief ranger at a park district in Ohio, and like most police officers (though they might not admit it), I enjoy watching COPS.
     
  9. What’s been your most difficult decision? Asking my family to uproot and move from Ohio so I could take on the challenge of being the executive director at Wildlife Prairie Park.
     
  10. What is something that always brings a smile to your face? The words “I love you, daddy” from my girls. a&s