Join the Texas Children in Nature network at the annual Summit and Champions Luncheon. The Summit will bring together leaders from the conservation, education, health, faith and built-environments to share best practices and new innovations that will inspire others to take action.

Texas Children in Nature (TCiN) is a program of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. TCiN supports the network of over 500 partner organizations who are dedicated to creating equitble access to nature for children and families. Research shows that children who learn and play in nature are healthier, happier and smarter. Join us this year at the Summit and find out why Texas continues to lead the children in nature movement to connect over 3 million children with nature each year. 

Location:  Holiday Inn Corpus Christi Downtown Marina, 707 North Shoreline Boulevard, Corpus Christi, TX 78401
Register for this event by clicking on the Ticket button below. Once you are registered you can manage your schedule and networking events.

Registration includes: Access to all sessions, breakfast on Dec. 6 & 7 and access to the Champions Luncheon.


Luke Austenfeld

Luke Austenfeld graduated from Emporia State University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Education and a major in Art. Luke received his Masters of Science in Human Services with a concentration in Non Profit Organizational Management and Leadership from Springfield College in Springfield Massachusetts. Luke was a charter participant in both the YMCA Executive Development Program and the International Leadership Institute in Jerusalem.
Luke taught High School and coached in the Kansas City area for 6 years before beginning his career as the CEO of the Camp Wood YMCA in 1983.  In 1989 Luke and his family (wife Diahnn and children Natalie, Tyler and Stephanie) moved to the Bay area in California to accept the position of Camping Service Director of the YMCA of San Francisco and the Executive Director of YMCA Camp Jones Gulch.
In 1994 Luke and his family moved back to the Midwest to Augusta, Michigan the CEO of the Sherman Lake YMCA to take on the challenge of building the first YMCA Camp and Conference Center built from the ground up in the past 50 years, the “Sherman Lake YMCA Outdoor Center”.  Since 1994 the Sherman Lake YMCA has raised more than $32,000,000 towards the development of the camp and conference center.
Luke’s accomplishments include multiple awards in teaching, coaching, writing, and YMCA work including the American Camping Associations highest award in 2012 for the Sherman Lake YMCA’s school camping program, “Integrated Education”.  He is an international presenter and consultant and has served on many National YMCA task forces and committees such as the “Principles into Action” character task force, One for the Movement Governance Restructuring, Rebranding the YMCA, YUSA Youth Development Task Force, the Resident Camp Study Group, Day Camp Upgrade Design Team, the Alliance of Independent YMCA Camp and Conference Centers, Thriving YMCAs task Force and the Government Relations Advisory Committee.
In 2017 Luke was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from the YMCA Mid America Camping Committee.

My Speakers Sessions

Thursday, December 6

10:45am CST