These guys really love what they do, and it shows!

Leadership Team

Our Leadership Team — all of whom provide guidance, support, and encouragement to the Camp Walden Staff — is composed of camp professionals whose backgrounds and experiences enable them to deal with the daily complexities of “operating” camp. Camp Walden’s leadership team meets regularly throughout the year to plan and prepare for the summer ahead. The Leadership Team is assembled in hopes that each team member can bring a unique perspective and expertise to our group.

Together, our team makes every effort to ensure that campers, families, and staff are afforded the best possible Camp Walden experience! It’s a big job to keep the Walden community happy, content, creative and allowing for lots of fun! Our Leadership Team is up to this challenge and we cannot emphasize how fortunate we feel in having these Walden personalities return summer after summer.

Picture of Howie, Co-owner.

Howie

Howie Grossinger

Co-owner

Howie has focused much of his camp leadership on developing creative activities and training our staff to the highest standards. A former high school teacher, Howie has been a camp professional for over 30 years and has been positively impacting campers and staff as our “go-to guy” for creating and nurturing teamwork at camp. Howie is a past President of the Ontario Camps Association and continues to work with youth throughout the year as a club volleyball coach.

Howie and Sari play an important role in all aspects of Camp Walden’s operations in the off-season. During the summer, Howie & Sari are the Directors of Camp Robin Hood, in Markham, Ontario and are the link between home and Camp Walden for our Home & Away campers, as well as valuable resources during their weekend visits to camp.

Sari and Howie are the proud parents of Jordanna, Cole & Zane who all spent significant time at Camp Walden as campers and staff.

Picture of Sari, Co-owner.

Sari

Sari Grossinger

Co-owner

Sari has a deep appreciation for the value of camp as she is a 2nd generation camp professional as her parents have been in the industry for almost 60 years. She has been involved in every aspect of camp operations – from Swim Staff to CIT Coordinator and from Section Head to Camp Director. Her training as a Paediatric Occupational Therapist has allowed Sari to provide opportunities for children with special needs at Camp Robin Hood and Walden through our Camper Relations Program and gives her a unique perspective on the needs of campers in any environment.

Howie and Sari play an important role in all aspects of Camp Walden’s operations in the off-season. During the summer, Howie & Sari are the Directors of Camp Robin Hood, in Markham, Ontario and are the link between home and Camp Walden for our Home & Away campers, as well as valuable resources during their weekend visits to camp.

Sari and Howie are the proud parents of Jordanna, Cole & Zane who all spent significant time at Camp Walden as campers and staff.

Picture of Sol, Co-owner and Camp Director.

Sol

Sol Birenbaum

Co-owner and Camp Director

Sol is committed to providing the very best in creative camp programming. Sol will provide leadership to the various staff teams to assist them in realizing safe and effective programming. Sol has over twenty-five years of camping experience at Ontario camps as a Camper, Counsellor, Area Head, and Director, as well as training and certification as a teacher. Sol makes every effort to hire a committed and highly skilled staff to facilitate camp activities. Sol’s other major focus is on the families of our Walden community. He communicates with families about their questions, cares, or concerns throughout the year and summer. Sol holds a Bachelor of Education degree and is a past recipient of the Ron Johnstone Memorial Award given annually by the Ontario Camping Association recognizing outstanding contributions in the field of camping.

Picture of Jen, Co-owner, Business Manager and Camp Tracker Support.

Jen

Jen Birenbaum

Co-owner, Business Manager and Camp Tracker Support

Jen started her camping career at Goldman Union Camp in Indiana, and completed her Bachelor of Education in 2004. Jen’s experience and considerable skill with kids makes her a tremendous resource to the Leadership Team.

Sol and Jen are thrilled to be joined at camp every summer by their daughter Talia (14 years old), son Samuel (12 years old), daughter Alex (10 years old), and daughter Daniela (8 years old)!

Picture of Seth, Associate Director.

Seth

Seth Cole

Associate Director

As Seth begins his 39th summer at Walden, he is extremely excited for a summer full of continuing opportunities as Associate Director. During his time at Walden he has been Head of Swim, Director of Waterfront, Program Director and Operations Manager. He oversees all waterfront specialities and all aspects of safety in camp. Seth will continue to take on the massive job of Walden’s daily, weekly and summer scheduling as well as working with the Leadership Team to develop fantastic programs including the Walden Games. In his capacity as Associate Director, Seth will have the opportunity to contribute his many years of camping experience to the smooth running and supervision of the camp. Seth’s favourite meal at camp is the hamburger BBQ. During the 1990s Seth spent 4 years as a trip leader on West Coast Connection. Seth is currently a teacher with the Toronto District School Board. He is joined on staff by his daughter Sharon, who will be co-unit head of the Colour unit and his son Jarred, who will be the head of Sail!

Picture of Ben, Head Counsellor.

Ben

Ben Fagan

Head Counsellor

Ben looks forward to spending his 25th summer at Walden this camp season. As Walden’s Head Counsellor and CIT Tracker Ben has a very special role in supporting current and aspiring staff members. Additionally, Ben works closely with all of Walden’s canoe trippers to maintain the high standards set by the program. Ben spends his offseason teaching High School English and can’t wait for everyone to spend time with his twin toddlers Quincy and Breaker this summer.

Picture of Alicia, Camper Tracker .

Alicia

Alicia Krumholz

Camper Tracker

With a heart full of gratitude, Alicia cannot wait for a regular Walden day. After a challenging year, Waldeners like Alicia feel so lucky to return to a place of such beauty. A serene physical space but moreover, an emotionally captivating place. Laughter, friendship, simplicity, growth, independence, grit and fun can be seen in every corner. After 22nd summers spent at Walden, 8 years as a camper, 14 years on staff, Alicia is returning home. After her years as comic, zodiac and seeker counsellor, seeker unit head and CIT coordinator, Alicia joined the Leadership team to become a tracker. This summer she continues to work with the Seekers and their families. After the year that was 2020, she is excited to help make this summer one of healing. During the year, Alicia is a teacher, working for the York Region School Board at Doncrest PS, teaching Grade 2 with a focus on mental health and well-being. She enjoys spending her time travelling the world, laughing with friends and family and swimming in Red Pine Lake!

Picture of Bree, Head of MASH.

Bree

Bree Peters

Head of MASH

Bree is so excited to be returning to camp for her 7th summer as the Head of MASH. Serendipity brought Bree and Walden together 7 years ago, and she is thrilled to be joining the Leadership Team again this year. Bree has been a Registered Nurse for 11 years, so brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to all things medical around camp. Her MASH team is made up of medical professionals who are committed to delivering the best health care to Walden Campers and Staff. Bree lives in Kamloops, BC but still calls Adelaide, Australia home. In Kamloops she runs her own business, while her partner (and Walden Staff), Jesper studies at TRU. Bree cannot wait for another year of nurturing and supporting the Walden Community!

Picture of Matt, Program Director, Director Walden Leadership Centre.

Matt

Matt Sherman

Program Director, Director Walden Leadership Centre

Matt is very excited to be returning to camp this summer as Program Director. He can’t wait to get back up to camp and bring new and creative programs to life. After many years as an Assistant Director during the Walden Leadership Centre, and a brief hiatus, Matt is excited to take on his new role as Director of the Walden Leadership Centre. The summer can’t come soon enough!

Picture of Danielle, Camper Tracker and Staff Coordinator Director, Family Weekend and Walden Long Weekend.

Danielle

Danielle Zelikovitz

Camper Tracker and Staff Coordinator Director, Family Weekend and Walden Long Weekend

Danielle is thrilled to be returning for her 16th summer at Walden and her 5th year on the Leadership Team. During the year, Danielle works in the Walden office managing all cabin placements, as the staffing coordinator, and assisting with the daily tasks during the off season. Danielle’s years as a Walden staff member have always been spent in the Colour unit; either as a counsellor, unit head, or tracker. She is excited to be returning as the Co-Colour tracker this summer, welcoming our youngest campers into the Walden family. Danielle is also the Director of several discovery programs that we offer at Camp Walden! She is the face of our Walden Family Weekend and the Walden Long Weekends. Danielle is so excited for camp and can’t wait for another amazing summer!

Picture of Nadine, Camper Tracker.

Nadine

Nadine Collins

Camper Tracker

Nadine is super excited to return to camp this summer as a tracker on the Leadership Team! She is looking forward to building new relationships with staff and campers, continuing old ones and enjoying the outdoors with her husband Jamie, daughter Kori and dog, Poppy! During her years at Walden, she first worked for the Walden Leadership Centre before coming to camp full-time as a Colour Counsellor and Unit Head. In the off season, Nadine works as an elementary school teacher for the Toronto District School Board. Nadine is looking forward to working and communicating with all her campers and their families! 2021 is definitely going to be the best summer yet!

Picture of Sophie, Camper Tracker, Director Walden Leadership Centre.

Sophie

Sophie Lloyd

Camper Tracker, Director Walden Leadership Centre

Sophie is thrilled to be returning for another summer at Walden. She is from Australia and is excited to be back on the Leadership Team as a Co-Zodiac Tracker this summer. Sophie has been a counsellor, a specialist, a unit head and previously directed our Walden Leadership Centre. She is studying social work and brings her experience and knowledge to our campers and staff each year. Sophie is relatively new to our Walden family, beginning her 5th summer at Walden but we have loved to watch her grow and advance so quickly and enjoy seeing her thrive in the Zodiac Unit and in the Walden community.

Picture of Sarah , Camper Tracker.

Sarah

Sarah Krestell

Camper Tracker

Sarah is so excited to be returning to Walden! Her years as a Walden staff member have been spent as a counsellor, head specialist, unit head, and L-team member tracker. She is excited to be returning this summer as one of our Zodiac Trackers. She will be welcoming old and new campers into the Walden family with open arms. Growing up at camp with her “camp family” has shaped her into the person she is today. Sarah is currently in school training to be a registered social service worker and is excited to get to know Zodiac campers and their families! She can’t wait to see everyone’s smiling faces on the first day at camp!

Picture of Jamie, Special Programs Coordinator.

Jamie

Jamie Collins

Special Programs Coordinator

Jamie is pumped to be returning for his 21st summer and for his second as a member of the Walden Leadership Team. During his many years at camp, Jamie has been a counsellor, unit head, CIT Coordinator, and member of the Program team as well as spending multiple years as the Assistant Director of the Walden Leadership Centre. He is incredibly excited and thankful to be returning to camp for the summer of 2021! Jamie is dedicated to continuing to bring incredible programming to the campers and staff of 2021. He will be joined by his wife Nadine, daughter Kori and dog Poppy! This will be the most epic summer yet!

Picture of Lyndsay, Dining Hall Manager & Co-Kitchen Coordinator.

Lyndsay

Lyndsay Cloughley

Dining Hall Manager & Co-Kitchen Coordinator

Lyndsay is thrilled to be coming back to camp for her 18th summer as the Dining Hall Manager & Co-Kitchen Coordinator. Her claim to fame is that she was Sol’s “first new hire” way back in the winter of 2004! Over the years Lyndsay has been developing her skills and is very excited to continue her role on the Leadership Team this summer. Lyndsay and the kitchen staff are committed to providing healthy and delicious food while having the best time dancing in the dining hall!

Picture of Bethany, Camper Tracker.

Bethany

Bethany Wright

Camper Tracker

Bethany is really excited to be returning for another year on the leadership team! After many summers she has developed through the ranks from specialist to head staff, unit head to tracker. Bethany came through the Camp Canada program all the way back in 2014. With this, she has started a blog to help and advise new international staff members on everything about summer camp. She loves being part of the Walden community and welcomes everyone with open arms and a big smile on her face. She is looking forward to being part of this amazing team again this summer, and excited to bring fun and laughter to all campers and staff alike!

Picture of Melanie, Head of Camper Relations.

Melanie

Melanie Offman

Head of Camper Relations

Mel is ecstatic to be returning to Walden as a new member of the Leadership team! In past summers, Mel has been a Camper Relations staff, Seeker counsellor, and most recently Head of Camper Relations. Mel is currently finishing her last year in Teachers College and is hoping to soon become a high school Chemistry and Math teacher in the off-season. Mel’s favourite part of her role as Head of Camper Relations is the opportunity to work with campers and staff across all units! Although only her 5th year, Mel quickly found a home at Walden and is looking forward to returning for the summer of 2021!

Picture of Marlie, Camper Tracker.

Marlie

Marlie Clark

Camper Tracker

Marlie is so excited to be returning for her 16th summer at Walden. Her years as a staff member have been spent as swim staff and head of swim. She is looking forward to her new role as a camper tracker and member of the L-team. During the year, Marlie is pursuing a master’s degree in occupational therapy. Marlie can’t wait to get back to her favourite place in the world and share another amazing summer with new and familiar faces! She is so excited to work and connect with campers, families and staff!!

Picture of Zach, Camper Tracker .

Zach

Zach Lash

Camper Tracker

Zach is thrilled to be returning for his 17th summer at Walden! Since he began working at camp, he has gotten the opportunity to work in different roles both on water and on land as the head of Sail, to being the Zodiac unit head. This coming summer, he is grateful to be returning as one of the trackers for the colour unit! There is nothing he’s looking forward to more this summer than being able to welcome all the new and returning campers to Walden and continue to help foster a passion for the overnight camp lifestyle! Overall, he is excited to return to a place he calls his second home and to the family and friends that he’s met since growing up at Walden!

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Day 49

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