About Greg Lais, MBA

Greg Lais, MBA, is the founding partner of GJL Consult. Greg has 40 years of experience serving on the boards of dozens of organizations. He is the founder of Wilderness Inquiry and over the course of his career guided Wilderness Inquiry into one of the premier outdoor service providers in the United States. Greg envisioned and developed programs such as the Canoemobile, Gateway to Adventure, and Share the Adventure—all award winning programs that serve thousands of people from all walks of life. 

Greg Lais is known for seeing opportunities and finding solutions to complex issues and problems. For example, while serving on the board of a school, the directors were seeking ways to consolidate from two campuses to one. The logical choice was thought to be impossible, but Greg asked why? He went to the leadership of the impossible choice, and with a few small adjustments they welcomed the consolidation that, in effect, saved the school. 

Greg Lais graduated from St. John’s University in 1978. In his senior year at St. John’s he founded Wilderness Inquiry with his college pal Paul Schurke. Paul went to the North Pole in 1986 with Will Steger. Greg continued to work on Wilderness Inquiry and in 1991 received his MBA from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management. Greg has been recognized for outstanding achievement by both schools. 

Boards Greg has served on:

·    Metropolitan State University Foundation

·    Friends of the Falls

·    Minnesota Life College

·    Minnesota Environmental Partnership

·    Friends of the Boundary Waters

·    Common Fate

·    National Center on Accessibility.   

·    Ann Bancroft Foundation

·    Risen Christ Elementary School

·    Disability Funders Network

·    Wilderness Inquiry


Honors received by Greg Lais

·      Honored at the White House for service for people with disabilities, April, 1989

·      St. John's University Alumni Achievement Award, 1990

·      Minnesota State Council on Disability Distinguished Service Award, November, 1992

·      Jim Renne Leadership Award, Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education, May, 2000

·      Boggs-Mitchell Award for Integrated Recreation Programs, Arc Minnesota, 1996 and 2005

·      Community Building Award, American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR), 2005

·      Full Community Inclusion Award, American Association on Mental Retardation (AAMR), 2005 

·      Disability Rights Advocates Eagle Award, 2005

·      Paul Petzold Wilderness Educator Award, Wilderness Education Association, 2012

·      St. John’s University / College of St. Benedict Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2014

·      AARP’s 50 over 50 Accomplished Leaders 2017

·      AACSB International: Association to Advance College Schools of Business Influential Leader Challenge 2018