Camp Staff

Get to know this year's camp staff!

Lead Counselors

Broderick “Brody” Race
Number of years as a camp counselor: 7
Job/School: Unemployed
Interests: Reading, Exercise, Trading Card Games
Favorite things that cost less than $5:  Java Monster Coffee, Magic Cards
Fun Fact about yourself: 14 Siblings, pretty good at Spanish and French
What are you looking forward to at camp:  Another year of fun and cultural activities and workshops

Margaret Long
Number of years as a camp counselor: 2
Job/School: Bus Driver and Center Assistant for Zagbëgon
Interests: :  Reading, writing, movies, hunting, spending time with family
Favorite things that cost less than $5:  Early morning matinee at Wonderland Theater
Fun Fact about yourself: I have 4 kids; I enjoy computer work; I am obsessed with Harry Potter
What are you looking forward to at camp: Helping kids have a fun filled language and culture based experience!

Liz Milliken
Number of years as a camp counselor: 3
Job/School: Teacher Assistant at Zagbëgon
Interests: Hanging out with my family, traveling, camping, hiking,  shopping, kayaking, eating/ trying new foods/ restaurant,  going to concerts, wine tasting, binge watch shows on Netflix
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Albanese gummy bears, iced chai tea latta,  burts bees chapstick, simply pleasure raspberry lemonade, chocolate covered raisins, cherries, chiptole, blueberry muffins from martins, cheesecake, blue moon ice cream, root beer floats
Fun Fact about yourself: I have twin 8 year old girls and am expecting my 3rd daughter in August!
What are you looking forward to at camp: Doing the different activities with the campers 

Corinne Kasper
Number of years as a camp counselor: 2
Job/School: PhD student at the University of Chicago
Interests: I like to run and bike and cook a lot. Sometimes I curate playlists. I also like to read about morphology and learn and speak Bodwéwadmimwen.
Favorite things that cost less than $5: drinking water, charging my fitbit, buying almost 2 gallons of gas at Bent Tree
Fun Fact about yourself: When I’m with my two best friends from college, we share a hive mind that holds the collective knowledge between us. I have a minimalist tattoo of patrick star and a tattoo of the word fry bread in Potawatomi. I once did a wall sit for 14 minutes.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Hanging with my ppl, speaking Bodwéwadmimwen, being outside, seeing a turtle perhaps.

Sarah Schilling
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Eastern Michigan School of Art and Design
Interests: I do a lot of creating in art school, but I like to paint in my spare time just for fun. I love to spend time outside, especially at the beach. I am interested in gardening (even though I am not very good at it so far). I love to travel to visit friends and family. I like trying new recipes and restaurants.
Favorite things that cost less than $5: McChickens, Hot Takis, coconut water, sheet face masks, bath bombs, and sugar scrubs.
Fun Fact about yourself: I’ve shaken hands with Barack and Michelle Obama. I went on a cross country road trip with my best friends last summer.
What are you looking forward to at camp: I am looking forward to learning more about Pokagon culture, not having to cook for myself for weeks at a time, being in such a beautiful outdoor space, and getting to know the counselors and kids.

Brandon “B” Winchester-Jones
Number of years as a camp counselor: 2
Job/School: Grace Christian University
Interests: Basketball and Fortnite
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Gummi Bears
Fun Fact about yourself: Funny/ good at Basketball
What are you looking forward to at camp: Smooth and easy time

Joe “Joey” Avance
Number of years as a camp counselor: 3
Job/School: Arizona Christian University
Interests: Hiking, Hanging Out, Top Golf
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Raspberry Lemonade and Chicken Strips with honey mustard
Fun Fact about yourself: I love to get buckets and hand out L’s
What are you looking forward to at camp: Having lots of laughs

Bill “Bill Nye” Edmond Hobia III
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Target
Interests: Making friends and memes
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Indian tacos without any toppings
Fun Fact about yourself: I’m enrolled Potawatomi but am also Seminole and Creek. I am from Oklahoma.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Getting to catch up with the campers and staff.

Kristine Johnson
Number of years as a camp counselor: 5
Job/School: South Bend Community School Corp./Family Literacy Pre-School Coordinator
Interests: Kayaking, hiking, travel, reading, horseback riding, art fairs and writing
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Dark Chocolate, anything handmade, handwritten letters/cards
Fun Fact about yourself: I grew up with a horse of my own and rode for hours on acres and acres of trails everyday when I was a preteen/teenager. I love nature and especially finding turtles! I'm Bear Clan and I have two "cubs" of my own. My favorite time to go to the lake is in the winter! It's the most amazing time to visit the water!
What are you looking forward to at camp: I'm looking forward to seeing all the campers from the past years that I have known and also meeting any new campers coming to camp for the first time! Also, I love the language lessons and all the opportunities we will all have to practice together.

John “Coach” Rader
Number of years as a camp counselor: 3
Job/School: Construction and I attend Lake Michigan College
Interests: Family, Coaching, training, and workouts
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Mountain Dew, double cheese burgers
Fun Fact about yourself: I have 3 kids, 3 chickens, 2 ducks, 1 dog, and 1 fish, and I love Notre Dame.
What are you looking forward to at camp: The campers

Day Counselors

Kellie Wilson
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Lead Teacher at Zagbëgon
Interests: Reading, attending theater productions, concerts, travel, golf, bowling, 5K walks
Favorite things that cost less than $5: going to one of the Moore theaters for a matinee, going to the beach
Fun Fact about yourself: I have traveled to over 30 states and 5 different countries. I love experiencing new crazy even simple things such as snowshoeing, exploding in the escape room, and hopefully sky diving if I meet the wellness center challenge.
What are you looking forward to at camp: It is a new work experience for me and I love being outside and working with children.

Jon Carlson
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Teacher at Zagbëgon
Interests: Hunting, fishing, and golfing
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Starbucks Coffee and golf balls
Fun Fact about yourself: I enjoy spending time on my boat fishing with my dad! My favorite vacation spot is San Diego, California where I use to live!
What are you looking forward to at camp: Seeing some of my former preschool students!

Katarina “Kat” Lowell
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Waitress waiting to leave for the University of Alabama
Interests: I love shopping, eating, sleeping and lifting HEAVY weights!
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Coffee
Fun Fact about yourself: I am competing in bodybuilding, I was the captain of my men's lacrosse team (although I wasn't very good,) I am a jingle dress dancer, and I was a cheerleader all throughout high school.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Being a role model, developing friendships and having fun!

Hailee Green
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Grand Valley State University
Interests: Reading young adult novels, write, binge watch Netflix, study French, and go to the movies.
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Sour Patch Kids, patterned washi tape, Cheez-its, chapstick, anything from the Taco Bell dollar menu, and colored pens/markers
Fun Fact about yourself: I'm going to France in the summer of 2020 for study abroad. I own over 300 books.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Spending time outside and hanging out with the kids.

Maxim “Max” Race
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: 11th grade howell high school and GED/dishwasher at tomato brothers
Interests: I am not much of a hobby person, but I’m always willing to participate with my best effort.
Favorite things that cost less than $5: 99 cent Arizona, and RX energy drink
Fun Fact about yourself: 14 siblings and I’m double jointed
What are you looking forward to at camp: I’m looking forward to everything that camp offers.

Sierra Ayres
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Washington University in St. Louis
Interests: Swimming, singing and dancing, sewing, reading and writing, anything involving water, and spending time with family and friends.
Favorite things that cost less than $5: flea market sunglasses, iced mocha coffee drinks, mcdouble (only ketchup), colorful pens, and Burt’s Bees chapstick!
Fun Fact about yourself: I am currently in training and mentor ship to become a full spectrum Doula! I’m also a sexuality educator. 
What are you looking forward to at camp: I’m so excited to spend time getting to know our campers and creating space and opportunities for them to have fun, learn some language, and  be outside.

Rebecca “Becca” Lynn
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1
Job/School: Creator of QueerKwe Designs
Interests: Beadwork, crafting, swimming, hiking, playing sports, decolonizing
Favorite things that cost less than $5: McChicken, ice cream, coffee, beads
Fun Fact about yourself: I’m a member of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians and I started my own beading business a year ago to create more representation for LGBTQ & Two Spirit Indigenous folks.
What are you looking forward to at camp: I’m looking forward to sharing our beautiful Anishinaabe culture with campers and learning more about Pokagon culture alongside them.

Essential Staff

Rebecca “Becka” Williams Camp Director
Number of years working at camp: 5
Job/School: Youth Cultural Coordinator
Interests: Spending time with my kids and husband, sewing, arts, going to the movies
Favorite things that cost less than $5: A can of Red Bull, a gallon of gas
Fun Fact about yourself: I never attended summer camp as a child. I can’t laugh too hard when I’m driving because my eyes get too squinty and I can’t see.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Belly laughs

Susan “Susie Q” Doyle Camp Director
Number of years working at camp: 5 years
Job/School: K-8 Educational Associate for the Pokagon Band Department of Education
Interests: Playing & attending sports (basketball, football & baseball are my favorite)
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Coffee and Coke
Fun Fact about yourself: I have a really good memory and I am shy
What are you looking forward to at camp: New camp memories. I need a good laugh!

Kristie “Mama Bus” Bussler Assistant Camp Director
Number of years working at camp: 4
Job/School: Educational Resource Specialist for the Pokagon Band Department of Education
Interests: Hanging Out with My Family, Taking Photos, Exploring, Reading, Listening to Music, Watching Movies, Going for Walks
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Starbucks Café Latte, Chocolate Bar, Cocktail Peanuts,
Fun Fact about yourself: I am a huge Paul McCartney fan! I love having fun with my grandchildren. I like to follow dirt roads to see where they lead.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Every year, I look forward to getting to know the campers better.

Abigail Shanahan Police Officer
Number of years working at camp: 1
Job/School: Tribal Police Officer
Interests: Running races with family, hanging out with my dogs, camping, bike rides with family
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Going to the movies in Niles
Fun Fact about yourself: I used to dance tap, ballet, and Jazz.
What are you looking forward to at camp: I am looking forward to Gage Street day and hanging out with all the children.

Jessica Brady Office Support
Number of years working at camp: 1
Job/School: Administrative Assistant at Zagbëgon
Interests: reading a good book, swimming, going for family walks, spending time with my husband and daughter, love to go to the beach and walk on the pier
Favorite things that cost less than $5: 
Fun Fact about yourself: I have 18 nieces and nephews and 1 great nephew
What are you looking forward to at camp: Interacting with the kids and Gage Street days!

Kitchen Staff

Gerald Inman Cook
Number of years working at camp: 1
Interests: Hunting, fishing, sleeping, repeat
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Hunting and fishing paraphernalia
Fun Fact about yourself: I am extremely good at hunting and fishing and sleeping.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Cooking for the kids.

Sarah Simmons Kitchen Assistant
Number of years working at camp: 1
Job/School: Zagbëgon Bus Driver/Center Assistant
Interests: Long car rides listening to music, watching movies, sitting around bonfires with family and friends
Favorite things that cost less than $5: Wonderland Theater
Fun Fact about yourself: I have 4 kids ages 20, 19, 14, and 12, and I'm going to be a grandma!
What are you looking forward to at camp: Meeting new people

Danielle “Dani” Taylor Kitchen Assistant
Number of years as a camp counselor: 1 year as a lead counselor and 3 years in the kitchen
Job/School: Lead Teacher at Zagbëgon
Interests: sewing, being mom to a 2 year old, hanging out at my family’s lake house
Favorite things that cost less than $5: McDonald’s Sweet Tea & Twistee’s slushies
Fun Fact about yourself: I run a small business at home creating handmade infant/toddler wear, and I have a Disney trip planned for this coming November for my son’s third birthday!
What are you looking forward to at camp: jamming out to music while preparing and cooking in the kitchen.

Other Staff

Suzanne Dorman Camp Nurse
Number of years as a camp nurse: 3
Job/School: District School Nurse for Dowagiac Union Schools
Interests: shopping, going to the movies and hanging out with family and friends
Favorite things that cost less than $5: McDonald's Diet Coke, movie theater popcorn
Fun Fact about yourself: I have traveled to India and I am left handed
What are you looking forward to at camp:  Seeing how much the kids have grown since last year

Kimberly “Kim” Avance Special Needs Counselor
Number of years as a camp counselor: 4
Job/School: School Social Worker Niles Schools
Interests: Reading, Working out, spending time with children and grandchildren
Favorite things that cost less than $5: spending time with family, coffee, sitting outside
Fun Fact about yourself: I like to play most sports, I love all the Marvel and DC movies, and I love a good mystery to read or watch.
What are you looking forward to at camp: Spending time with campers and counselors.