Position Title: Camp Director
Status: Full time, year-round
Location: Lake Nebagamon, WI (during the Camp season; remote rest of the year)
About Camp Nebagamon
Camp Nebagamon has been hallowed ground to thousands of campers since 1929. Located in northwestern Wisconsin, not far from the shores of Lake Superior in the heart of Wisconsin’s Northwoods, Camp Nebagamon is a traditional boys residential summer camp. Campers and staff hail from states all over the nation as well as international destinations. Camp welcomes approximately 230 campers and 130 staff members each year and offers four- or eight-week sessions for campers.
Since its inception, the values and goals of Camp Nebagamon have stayed consistent, serving as the thread that connects the past to the present – giving boys the space they need to discover themselves in a refuge from the real world, challenging campers in ways that help them discover their capabilities, nurturing a diverse and caring community, and engendering a love of the outdoors.
Adam Kaplan and Stephanie Hanson have served for 20 years as the fourth directors-owners of Camp Nebagamon. With significant support from camp alumni, staff, and their families, Adam and Steph recently sold the entirety of the Camp Nebagamon property and business to a newly formed nonprofit 501(c)(3). The next Camp Director will have responsibility for leading all aspects of Camp Nebagamon and will report to the Board of Directors.
Camp Director Role
The Camp Nebagamon Director exhibits a passion for, and dedication to, working with children and the ability to gain the trust and respect of both campers and staff. The Nebagamon Director recognizes the individuality of each camper, celebrating and acknowledging that each boy has positive qualities which need to be identified and supported. The Director is a role model for continuous learning and will cultivate a varied camp program offering outlets for boys with varied strengths and interests.
The Director needs to be an effective communicator who can share feedback with respect, empathy, humor, and leadership. At the same time, the Director has to be a constructive listener, using a combination of empathy, patience, and the ability to say, “I don’t know, but maybe we can work this out together.”
A love of the outdoors and a conscientious respect for the environment is a hallmark of the Nebagamon Director. A commitment to the camping lifestyle on a year-round basis is integral to what Nebagamon stands for. The Director is responsible for facilitating a residential camp setting characterized by a commitment to enduring values of living together in a cooperative group and experiencing the outdoors in unique and meaningful ways, while nurturing intellectual, physical, and moral growth.
The ideal candidate will have many of the following:
- A sense of humor, loves working with children, and has ability to exude contagious positive energy,
- Deep experience working with children in school, camp, club or other setting,
- Supervising and mentoring staff experience,
- Experience in the wilderness and some of the other camp activities,
- Background with some combination of property, medical, food service management,
- Business experience in a small company and familiarity with requirements for accounting, tax filing, financial planning, and working with attorneys,,
- Background in a non-for-profit and experience reporting to a Board of Directors
- Experience in risk management, recognizing potential risks, creating emergency procedures, and cooperation with local emergency agencies
Overseeing Camp Functions
While the Director is the leader of the camp community, the ability to hire professional and competent staff and then delegate reasonable responsibilities as best serves Camp Nebagamon is critical.
Building a competent and effective team, comprised of both full time and seasonal staff, is a hallmark of Camp Nebagamon and the primary responsibility for this mission falls upon the Camp Director. The focus is always on a healthy and growth-producing experience for Nebagamon’s campers, although those mentoring and guiding these young people should simultaneously gain feelings of selflessness, accomplishment, creativity, and the essential belief that their efforts have contributed positively to the lives of children.
There are a number of detailed responsibilities that will either be assumed personally by the Director or delegated to staff. These include the following key categories:
- Being a constant and inspiring presence at camp,
- Overseeing safety and emergency response,
- Recruiting campers, traveling to key cities, engaging alumni, corresponding with current and prospective families to meet enrollment targets,
- Hiring and supervising full time staff,
- Addressing acute camper issues during the summer and providing post-season feedback,
- Overseeing program and operations including: summer in-camp program, wilderness trip program, kitchen and infirmary,
- Managing the Camp property including capital expenditures and large project management,
- Oversight of marketing, website, communications, for campers, families, and alumni,
- Recommending tuition (approved by the board of directors) and setting enrollment policies,
- Overseeing finances, including cash flow, budget, employee salary and benefits, audit, annual insurance, and board communications,
- Review applications for and awarding of Camperships (annual budget approved by board Camperships Committee),
- Learning thru ongoing education and continuous improvement.
How to Apply:
Please send your application to Search@CampNebagamon.com by December 31, 2023 and include:
- Your CV
- A personal statement, not to exceed 1000 words, that tells us why you are passionate about the summer camping experience and why you want to direct Camp Nebagamon.
- A brief statement, not to exceed 250 words, that tells us about the most important elements of your leadership and management style, learned from your successes or failures.
- A brief statement, not to exceed 250 words, about your long-term vision for Camp Nebagamon, including what you want to ensure stays the same and what you might consider changing as Camp moves forward into the next era.
- Names and contact info for three references.
Salary: Starting at $120,000 plus significant benefits, including health insurance
Junior Cabin Counselor
You and a Senior Counselor will have responsibility for a cabin of campers (anywhere from 6-14 boys depending on their age). You supervise and maintain their health, safety, and happiness throughout their four- or eight-week stay. Additionally, you will teach in one of our program areas during the days. Applicants must have finished either their junior or senior year of high school.
Senior Cabin Counselor
You and a Junior Counselor will have responsibility for a cabin of campers (anywhere from 6-14 boys depending on their age). You supervise and maintain their health, safety and happiness throughout their four- or eight-week stay. Additionally, you will teach in one of our program areas during the days. Applicants must be of college age or older.
You will be responsible for all aspects of wilderness trips ranging from overnight to two week trips. Position involves food packout, health supervision, route planning, and counseling of groups of 7-10 boys. Trips are always led with two staff members. Applicants should have experience with canoeing and hiking. Cycling experience is a plus. Applicants must also be certified Wilderness First Responders and certified lifeguards.
You will be responsible for maintaining and stocking the trip room with provisions and gear for our extensive wilderness tripping program. Applicants should be 21 years of age with a valid driver’s license and serious organization skills!
Wilderness Trip Drivers
This position involves the safe delivery of campers and trip counselors to and from camp as they embark on and return from their trips. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age, have a valid driver’s license, an excellent driving record, and experience driving vehicles with trailers.
Assistant Trip Director
You will work with the Trip Director in the administration of our extensive wilderness tripping program. Responsibilities include route planning, menu planning, trip driving, staff training, staff supervision, schedule making and crisis management. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age and have extensive experience with wilderness tripping. An outstanding knowledge of the Boundary Waters and the North Woods is a huge plus.
The following summer positions do not involve supervision of a cabin group, but rather focus on instruction in one of our program areas.
You will be responsible for administering the entire sailing program. Camp’s boats include X-class boats, Barnett sailboats, Flying Junior sailboats, a Hobie-Cat, a C-Scow racing boat, and windsurfers. Instruction levels range from absolute beginners through racers. Position also includes some boat maintenance and the supervision of a staff of approximately six other counselors. Applicants should have an extensive background with a wide array of sailboats, should be at least 21 years of age, and possess lifeguard certification.
You will be in charge of teaching campers how to ski (and slalom), driving ski boats and supervising staff working in the area. This position also includes routine maintenance of our ski boats. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age, enjoy working with children and have experience in skiing, both with two skis and slalom. Previous experience in ski instruction highly preferred.
Arts and Crafts Specialists
You will be responsible for administering our arts program. Activities would include using a potter’s wheel and kiln, sculpture, drawing, painting, woodwork, fiber arts and anything else you can bring to the table! Drama and music backgrounds are a plus. Applicants should have backgrounds in a variety of artistic endeavors and be at least 18 years of age.
Climbing Wall Specialist
You will be responsible for educating our campers in proper climbing technique and safe belaying practices, managing four other staff, as well as maintenance of climbing wall equipment and the wall itself. You must be familiar with Gri Gri¹s and have previous experience working at a climbing wall. We prefer that applicants possess certification from the AMGA or other accredited organization.
You will be responsible for administering our nature program. Instruction and activities center around the flora and fauna of the area. The use of camp’s property is prominent as well as taking advantage of field trip opportunities around the area. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age and have a good working knowledge of the flora and fauna of the region. Teaching experience is HIGHLY preferred.
Target Shooting Program Director
You will be responsible for all aspects of our shooting range. This includes maintenance of the Olympic style pellet guns, safety instruction, shooting instruction, and supervision of staff working in the area. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age and have good experience working on rifle ranges.
Campcraft Project Director
You will be responsible for administering our campcraft program, otherwise known as CNOC (Camp Nebagamon Outdoor Center). Along with six other staff you will teach campers how to build fires, use knives, axes and hatchets, operate stoves and cook over them, pitch tents, teach knots and lashings, and a variety of other skills. This program is very closely linked with the wilderness tripping program. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age, have a solid knowledge of wilderness camping skills, and demonstrate both teaching and supervisory skills.
Masters of Culinary Arts (M.O.C.A.) Specialist
You will be responsible for designing a curriculum, and instructing campers in food preparation and clean-up in our highly popular M.O.C.A. program. Safety, and proper use and cleaning of equipment, is required. In addition to teaching, the specialist is responsible for planning the program and working closely with the food service manager for ordering food supplies. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age, and have strong organizational and teaching skills.
You will be responsible for administering our photography program. The primary responsibility is to inspire and teach photography to our campers along with teaching them how to develop black and white film in our fully equipped darkroom. A secondary responsibility is to shoot and process a variety of photos and video for Nebagamon’s promotional purposes. Applicants should be at least 18 years of age, have a solid knowledge of photography and developing techniques, and demonstrate creativity and teaching skills.
You will be responsible for a group of approximately 70 boys and 14 staff members. Duties will include maintenance of their hygiene, health, emotional well being, physical well being, and general happiness at camp. A heavy emphasis of the job involves creative problem solving and coaching of staff throughout the summer. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age and have experience supervising both children and staff. Professional teaching experience is a huge asset.
Waterfront Director and Assistant Waterfront Director
You will be responsible for maintaining a productive and safe waterfront area. Program areas include fishing, swimming, rowboats, sailing and canoeing. The waterfront director supervises all of these areas and ensures that all is going well both with respect to instruction and safety. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age, have their lifeguard certification, have staff supervision experience, and have a working knowledge of as many types of boats as possible including outboard engines, pontoon boats, sailboats, canoes, and rowboats.
You will contribute to running camp’s administrative office. Duties will include light bookkeeping, execution of mailings, answering telephones, aiding staff in their office needs, copying, mail distribution, and just anything that needs to happen in the camp office! Applicants should have a good work ethic and be at least 16 years of age. Office experience is a definite plus.
You will be responsible for the administration of our health center. Working with a staff of two Nurse Assistants and a licensed M.D., you take care of camp! Duties involve maintenance of records, supervision of the Nurse Assistants, supervision of medication dispersal, and responding to whomever walks through the doors of the Health Center. Applicants should be at least 21 years of age and have an RN license.
You are responsible for the administration of our health center. Working with a licensed R.N., and a licensed M.D., you take care of camp! Duties involve maintenance of records, supervision of medication dispersal, and responding to whomever walks through the doors of the Health Center.
You will be responsible for all aspects of our food service. This will include supervising a staff of approximately fifteen, ordering food and kitchen supplies, maintaining excellent food quality and ensuring its timely delivery, maintaining a sanitary kitchen, providing safety instruction, and working with the camp directors to make the most of everyone’s summer experience. Applicants should have extensive experience in food service management and cooking for large groups.
You will be responsible for the preparation of our evening meal and will work together with the Morning Cook on lunch. Responsibilities will include managing a staff of 12 food assistants, maintaining a sanitary kitchen, safety instruction and guidance, storing food deliveries in an organized manner, and the maintenance of excellent food quality and timely meal delivery. Applicants should have extensive cooking experience, supervisory experience, and experience cooking for large groups.
You will be responsible for the preparation of camp’s breakfast and will work together with the Evening Cook on lunch. Responsibilities will include managing a staff of 12 food assistants, maintaining a sanitary kitchen, safety instruction and guidance, storing food deliveries in an organized manner, and the maintenance of excellent food quality and timely meal delivery. Applicants should have extensive cooking experience, supervisory experience, and experience cooking for large groups.
You will be responsible for a tremendous variety of food oriented tasks in the camp kitchen. These include food preparation, cooking, and cleaning. Applicants should have a strong work ethic, willingness to be a team player, and must be at least 16 years of age. Previous food experience is a plus.