Michael Glen Uhtoff

Michael Glen Uhtoff, 70, died at home in Ashland, on Wednesday, Feb. 25, 2009. He will be greatly missed by his family and friends. He was a devoted and generous husband, father and grandfather, to his wife of 42 years, Kathy, three children, and two grandchildren.

Mike was born in Kellogg, Idaho on Jan. 1, 1939, to Georgia and Bernie Uhtoff. He grew up in Spokane, Wash., playing in the woods around his house with his two brothers, Pat and Shaun. He loved sports and excelled in track and field and football. He earned a college football scholarship and played for Humboldt State University in Arcata, Calif. His team played in the 1960 NAIA national championship and was recently awarded into the Humboldt Hall of Fame. Mike met Kathy at Portland State University in 1965 where he received his BS and later his MS in Biology. He taught science and natural history initially as a high school classroom teacher before discovering he had a gift for and a love of inspiring and exciting kids about nature through direct experience outdoors. Working for the Portland Zoo, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, and the Portland Audubon Society, Mike led numerous natural history trips for kids and adults throughout Oregon and the Western U.S., where fun, adventure and education were interwoven. Meanwhile, he worked first as the director of OMSI's science camp, Hancock, then as director of the Goldendale Observatory and then as director of Portland Audubon. At Audubon he utilized his tremendous energies and wellspring of ideas to bring in talented people who together with Mike dramatically grew Audubon's conservation and education programs and succeeded in protecting wild areas, influencing public environmental policy and educating and exciting people about nature. Together with his wife, Kathy, Mike opened the Northwest Nature Shop in Ashland in 1985. Mike continued his conservation and education work in Ashland, where he was instrumental in protecting natural places in the area such as the Siskiyou Mountain Park and North Mountain Park.

A memorial service will be held at The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 87 4th St., Ashland, on Saturday, Mar. 21, 2009, at — p.m. Memorial contributions can be sent to the Portland Audubon Society or the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy.