Mike Simmons started with Lake Nixon in April of 2021. He came to us after years of service at the Arkansas 4-H Center. He has 25 years’ experience in the camping and outdoor education field and has a passion for helping people realize the best in themselves. He is involved in a number of professional organizations related to outdoor education. He is certified as a challenge (ropes) course facilitator and lifeguard as well as an experienced Wilderness First Aid, and Leave No Trace instructor. Mike will serve as the Assistant Director of the Lake Nixon Outdoor Center, working with the rest of the LNOC team to develop year round programming and as the Director of the Lake Nixon Summer Day Camp.
Mike has lived and worked in a wide variety of locations. He was born in Mexico City but only lived South-of-the-Border for 17 months. He primarily grew up in the Midwest, Ohio and Kansas. When he and his family moved to Western North Carolina, his interests in outdoor activities such as rock climbing, camping and hiking took off. Pursuing his love of the outdoors, Mike obtained a degree in Recreation Management from the University of Montana. He has worked at camps in North Carolina, New England, Canada and Arkansas. He taught at a boarding school in Vicksburg MS for 6 years.
Mike has lived in Little Rock since 2006. He is married to Rene, who works in healthcare. They have 4 teenage children, 2 boys and 2 girls. The eldest two are in college and the younger two are still in high school. Mike enjoys staying active, spending time with his energetic family and being outside.