James Sippel is the Bureau of Land Management Representative at the Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center and on the staff of the BLM's National Conservation Lands Division in the Headquarters Office. James began his wilderness career in 1991 in the BLM as a Wilderness Ranger with Wilderness Study Areas. He has held federal natural resource management positions in California, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington. James came to the Carhart Center in 2015 from the New Mexico State Office of the BLM where he was the region's National Conservation Lands Program Lead (including wilderness). James has worked on policy development for the BLM, including contributions to Manual 6340 (Management of Designated Wilderness) and a major role in Manual 6330 (Management of Wilderness Study Areas). Though he recognizes that important work occurs at a desk, he believes that the measure of our work's relevancy is the condition of the land, and with that in mind, is dedicated to assisting field staff. James' first encounter with Wilderness was at age 12 in the John Muir Wilderness near his childhood home of Ridgecrest. That was the start of a life-long interest in desert, forest, and alpine Wilderness. Having spent over 400 nights camped in the Wilderness, a majority of that with his family, James dedicates much of his career and free time to the subject. He believes that John Muir was right, that "going to the mountains is going home." James earned a Bachelor of Liberal Arts from Prescott College, Arizona, and a Master of Arts Interdisciplinary Studies in Forest Resources, Rangeland Resources, and Environmental Policy (thesis on wilderness management) from Oregon State University.