Camp Kawartha

Staff Directory

Our daily operations are managed by year-round professional staff.

Jacob Rodenburg : Executive Director

Jacob Rodenburg

Executive Director

Jacob has taught in the field of Outdoor Education for almost 30 years. He is currently the Executive Director of Camp Kawartha, a summer camp and outdoor education centre.  He recently received recognition from the Canadian Network for Environmental Education & Communication as an Outstanding Educator and the Stony Lake Environmental Award for his work in promoting environmental education in the region.   In 2010, Jacob received the Award for Leadership in Environmental Education by the Ontario Society of Environmental Educators, offered annually to one or more persons who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in Environmental Education for at least five years.   In 2007, he was awarded the Richards Education Award for excellence in Natural History Education from Ontario Nature.  He teaches at Trent University in environmental education.  Jacob graduated from Trent University with a joint major in environmental studies and geography. He holds a teacher’s certificate and a Master’s in Education.  He has published a number of articles on children, nature and the environment.   Recently Jacob co-authored The Big Book of Nature Activities which won a gold medal from the Green Book Festival, a double gold from Nautilus Book Awards, a silver medal from Moonbeam Children’s Award and was a finalist for the Indie (Independent) Book Awards.  Jacob spearheaded the construction of one of Canada’s most sustainable buildings at Trent University called the Camp Kawartha Environment Centre.  This unique facility teaches children and future teachers about sustainable living practices, alternative energy and conservation.  Jacob is also working with stakeholders throughout the region to create an environmental framework for children of all ages.  Called the Pathway to Stewardship, this approach to environmental education helps provide children with the experiences they need in order to become future stewards.  Jacob also helped to establish the Peterborough/Kawartha area as a designated UNESCO Regional Centre of Expertise in environment and sustainability education.
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Adam Strasberg (aka “Wham”) : Summer Camp Director

Adam Strasberg (aka “Wham”)

Summer Camp Director

I came to Camp Kawartha back in 2003 and it was one of the best decisions of my life! Now, I'm coming up on year 14, and I still get the same rush for camp as I did back in 2003.  Much of my reward comes from working with such an awesome staff and our families that value camp just as much as I do!  I've been a qualified teacher since 1996. I love Camp Kawartha because it puts such a high premium on having a positive attitude and being a role model.

We pride ourselves on environmental sustainability and teaching these lessons to our campers - our future leaders. Camp is about having fun, making lasting friendships, and building character. I cannot imagine spending my summer in any other place. 

Summer Camp Director's Messages

Neil Fortin : Head of Outdoor Education Centre

Neil Fortin

Head of Outdoor Education Centre

As the head of Outdoor Education, Neil has had 10 years experience in the field of Outdoor Education. He is a graduate of McMaster University and holds a diploma in Forest Recreation from Sir Sandford Fleming College. From his work at Camp Tawingo, Presqu'ile Provincial Park and Pococno Environmental Education Centre and other facilities, he is known as a remarkable story teller with a wealth of natural history knowledge. He has a back pocket full of games and activities that he draws on constantly. Kids love his dynamic teaching style and his enthusiasm.

Craig Brant : Environment Centre Manager

Craig Brant

Environment Centre Manager

Craig has degrees in Arts and Environmental Education, 10 years of experience in the field of outdoor/environmental education and a strong foundation in the world of summer camps. He is a naturalist working towards what he calls “a black belt in nature”! Craig loves sharing the beauty, freedom and the adventure he finds in the outdoors with people of all ages – especially youth. As the Manager for the new Camp Kawartha Environment Centre and as an Outdoor Educator for Camp Kawartha, Craig is working to create positive ties between the community, the people, and the natural world.
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Shawna Foxton : Registrar, Outdoor Education Centre (Schools & Groups)

Shawna Foxton

Registrar, Outdoor Education Centre (Schools & Groups)

Shawna cannot remember a time when she did not want a career working with animals. After obtaining her BSc in Physical Anthropology from U of T, she pursued primate research in Hong Kong and Central America and worked as a zoo keeper looking after elephants and pygmy hippos at the Toronto Zoo (hence the nickname “Pygmy” ) as well as the African Lion Safari where she honed her skills chasing naughty baboons off tour buses. Life changed to studying primates of a different sort when she landed a job in the newsroom of Citytv in Toronto where she held roles such as researcher, news writer, web manager, administrative supervisor and unit production manager for 16 years. Craving a little bit less adrenaline, she moved to her cabin in the woods a few years ago and serendipitously found a position in the office at Camp Kawartha where she enjoys encouraging schools and other groups to make a booking at this magical and meaningful facility.
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James White : Registrar, Summer Camp and Environment Centre

James White

Registrar, Summer Camp and Environment Centre

James is our most recent addition to the CK office team and will be stepping into the role of Summer Camp and Environment Centre Registrar. James has a deep passion for the outdoors and can often be found with his head in a book beside a large body of water. He is a Trent University graduate and has over six years of customer service experience working in the hotel industry. Having made hundreds of reservations for hotel guests, James is accustomed to managing the chaos that can be mass-registration and has considerable experience working with both parents and children to facilitate sporting and family-based events. Now looking to put down roots and settle down, James is keen to share his experience on a more personal level and looks forward to meeting and expanding the Camp Kawartha family. Whether you are a returning camper, first time camper or a group or school looking to visit our incredible Environment Centre, James is here to help however he can and hopes to hear from you soon.


Karen Copson : Administrative/IT Coordinator, Webmaster, & Giftshop

Karen Copson

Administrative/IT Coordinator, Webmaster, & Giftshop

Karen has 30+ years experience in office administration. She is a graduate of Fleming College with a diploma in Business Administration - Information Systems, and has certificates in Bookkeeping and Web Site Design. Karen has a wealth of computer knowledge and skills including computer programming, networking, software training and consulting, database management, and web site design (hence the camp name "Gates"). Karen works behind the scenes drawing on her skills and experiences to help streamline and improve administrative processes for our organization and maintain Camp Kawartha's website. She is a Bronze, Silver and Gold Award Recipient of The Duke of Edinburgh's Award, and completed her gold level expedition by hiking the Pennine Hills of Scotland in her younger years. Karen has worked with Camp Kawartha since 2002, and is currently a member of the Women’s Business Network of Peterborough, and a volunteer committee member for the Kawartha Chamber of Commerce & Tourism.
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Paige Mahoney-Nagle : Communications Coordinator

Paige Mahoney-Nagle

Communications Coordinator

Paige has been happily involved with Camp Kawartha for more than 15 years and just can’t stay away. So even though she has now moved to Perth, Ontario she is still very happy to continue along with her Camp Kawartha family in the new role of Communications Coordinator. With an extensive background in summer camp (camper, staff (Burnzy) & registrar!), a love of environmental and outdoor education and now several years experience in social media and photography she is so excited to continue to share on behalf of Camp Kawartha, everything from the day to day happenings to the exciting future endeavours CK is embarking on. When she’s not online you can find her knitting, reading, out in fields exploring or working on building a house with her husband.
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