President and Founder, Northwest Indiana Paddling Association (NWIPA)
Dan is the President and founder of the Northwest Indiana Paddling Association (NWIPA), an American Canoe Association Paddle America Club 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization of approximately 450 paddlers founded in 2009, devoted to making the region a premier paddling destination through their efforts of organizing canoe & kayaking events, education, and blueways stewardship.
Dan is also a board member and former Vice-President of Shirley Heinze Land Trust, a charitable trust that preserves and protects the unique ecosystems of the Indiana Dunes region.
In addition, Dan is past board member of the Northwest Indiana Quality of Life Council, a member of the Trail Creek Watershed Steering Committee, the Indiana DNR Coastal Advisory Board, the NWI Regional Planning Council’s Environmental Management Policy Committee (EMPC), the Indiana DNR trails Advisory Board, the Indiana University Northwest SPEA Board of Advisors, the Northwest Indiana Steelheaders, Pi Alpha Alpha Honor Society, the Indiana Grand Kankakee Marsh Restoration Project, the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern (AOC) advisory committee (CARE), the Urban Waters Federal Initiative Steering Committee, the National Park Conservation Association’s Future of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore steering committee, and the Northwest Indiana Forum environmental committee.
Dan earned both a Bachelor and Masters Degree in Public Administration / Environmental Policy through the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Dan is a graduate from the IU Institute for Innovative Leadership, former President of the IU Northwest Alumni Association, and is a Certified Master Naturalist.
While as an employee of the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, he was given the Commissioner’s Award for Environmental Excellence for his outstanding efforts on insuring drinking water quality across Northern Indiana. In 2009, Dan received the Northwest Indiana Quality of Life Award, and also was inducted into the Northwest Indiana Society of Innovators. In 2010, Dan received on the behalf of the Northwest Indiana Paddling Association the prestigious “Stroke of Achievement Award” for outstanding program development and achievement from the American Canoe Association – the highest award given to an ACA affiliate paddling organization in the country. Over the past year, Dan spearheaded an effort that led to the designation of the Lake Michigan Water Trail as a National Recreation Trail. Additionally, Dan received the National Park Service’s 2011 Midwest Region Excellence in Partnership Merit Award on the behalf of the Northwest Indiana Paddling Association. Most recently, Dan received the Northwest Indiana Times 20 Under 40 Award which recognizes twenty leaders under forty across Northwest Indiana making an impact to improve the region, and the Leadership Northwest Indiana South Shore Impact Award.
Current efforts include building a coalition of organizations to protect and preserve the East Branch of the Little Calumet River corridor and the creation of a water trail, and the completion of the 1600 mile Lake Michigan Water Trail National Recreation Trail.
Dan is an employee of NiSource as their Water Program Leader in the Corporate Environmental, Safety, and Sustainability Department and is a member of the Sustainability Team.
Dan lives in Westville Indiana with his wife Vicky, their four year old son Eric, two year old daughter – Katie, and four month old son Matthew.