Our Staff

Jim Nelson, Owner

Jim has two decades of natural resource experience in the midwest. From Southern Wisconsin to Central Illinois, he served as an ecological restoration and native landscape project manager for Applied Ecological Services, a restoration professional for LaGesse and Associates and a watershed planner before opening Nelson Land Management.

Jim is an IL Certified Burn Manager, holds several wildland fire certifications, and has extensive experience managing invasive species of concern in the central midwest. 

Ethan Crain, Ecological Restoration Foreman

Ethan joined NLM in July of 2019 after earning his degree in Environmental Studies with concentrations in Wildlife Management and Ecohydrology from Illinois College in Jacksonville. He served as a Conservation Education Intern with the IL Department of Natural Resources and a National Fish and Wildlife Refuge intern in Meredosia, IL When he's not working you'll probably find Ethan on a boat angling, regardless of the temperature or precipitation. 

John Schappaugh, Ecological Restoration Technician

John joined NLM in October of 2020. His previous experience as a seasonal employee of IL Department of Natural Resources at New Salem State Park gave him experience in clearing areas of invasive species and treatment of the natural landscape. He gained knowledge of herbicides and farm equipment while working at the local Farm & Home store in Petersburg, Illinois. When he’s not working, you will find him officiating or participating in paintball tournaments across the US. 

Brad Olson, Ecological Restoration Technician

Brad joined Nelson Land Management in August of 2020. He earned a bachelor's degree in Zoology and a minor in Geography from Western Illinois University in Macomb. Brad serves in the Illinois National guard as a Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear specialist. He previously worked for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources at Big River State Forest. Even in his off-time you can find Brad in the timber deer hunting or scouting.

Trevor Wasson, Ecological Restoration Technician
Trevor joined NLM in January 2021.     He graduated from Drake University in Des Moines with a Bachelor’s in Environmental Science and Biological Conservation, where he assisted with and performed his own research into habitat restoration and species reintroduction. He previously worked as a Forestry Technician intern with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources at Loess Hills State Forest. In his off time, you can find him on a hiking trail or at a bird blind.


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Nelson Land Managment LLC  2017