Phil Jenni has been the executive director of the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Minnesota (WRC), since March 2002.
Prior to that, he was finance director of the Citizens League and was responsible for all of the day-to-day operational details, including financial management, fundraising, budgeting and personnel. He was also involved in several policy issues, including property tax and fiscal policy, transportation and education policy.
A Wisconsin native, he grew up in a family that owned a floral shop/garden center in west central Wisconsin. He graduated from Ripon College with a B.A. in history and moved to St. Paul in 1976 to attend graduate school at the University of Minnesota, studying Tudor/Stuart history under Dr. Stanford Lehmberg.
While pursuing his Ph.D., he and several partners developed a specialty retail store devoted to distance running which eventually became GBS Sports. While at GBS he helped start many area races including the Twin Cities Marathon. A former competitive athlete he competed in national and international road running events and has run both the Boston and London Marathons twice. He ran the 1983 London Marathon in 2 hours and 26 minutes.
Among a wide range of community activities, Phil was a member of the Ramsey County Parks and Recreation Commission for 20 years. He is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Board of the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) and is the 2011 recipient of CVM’s Outstanding Service Award.
He is past chairperson of the Board of Directors of Twin Cities Academy, an award-winning St. Paul charter school. He also has served as a member of the Walton-SchoolStart Grant Review Panel, which reviewed school innovation grant requests to the Walton Family Foundation. He has served on numerous other boards and community committees including the Minneapolis Rotary Club, the Minnesota Wildlife Assistance Cooperative, the Friends of the Harriet Alexander Nature Center and the Healing Gardens Steering Committee for the Center for the Victims of Torture. He is also a past member of the Nike Running Advisory Board.
His personal interests include architectural and landscape design, construction, flower gardening and reading. He and his wife, Jane, designed and renovated the family's Portland Avenue carriage house and garden in St. Paul's Ramsey Hill neighborhood. Their house and garden have been featured in the Star Tribune and several national garden magazines. He also enjoys kayaking, bicycling, “hard core” mountain biking and doing projects on the family retreat near Black River Falls, Wisconsin
Return to WRC Staff