2022 Luminary Series – John Scheltens

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Few cavers in the National Speleological Society have had the breadth of experiences enjoyed by John Scheltens. In Wind Cave alone, John has accomplished what most would consider a lifetime of achievement. Augmenting his interest in this super long, largely dry, and mostly horizontal cavern Scheltens was also a key member of the team that explored a deep and wet cave named Great Expectations. Great X as it is often known, wound up breaking the United States Depth Record and gained worldwide renown with horrifying tales of traversing its Grim Crawl of Death. Not satisfied with simply helping to explore Great X, Scheltens and a group of like-minded individuals thought that the NSS should actually buy this world-class test piece. And, as is typical of initiatives near and dear to Scheltens, he did not take a breather until that task was done.

John Scheltens has served the NSS as President of the Society. Moreover, Scheltens “cleans up pretty good” and, along the way, he stalked the halls of the United States Congress in Washington, D.C. to facilitate the passage of the Federal Cave Resources Protection Act.

John owns and operates a beautiful ranch in Hot Springs, South Dakota. Indeed, certain members might remember this wonderful ranch generously hosting portions of the 1988 NSS Convention. John Scheltens is a patriotic American and a great advocate of a strong work ethic. He is comfortable breaking bread with a wide range of friends—including suit-and-tie professionals, brilliant scientists, and down-to-earth cowboys. In fact, John’s e-mail address actually includes the moniker “SDCowboy.”

2022 Luminary Series – John Scheltens

June 1, 2022

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