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Welcome the New ACA, NY & NJ Board Members

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Welcome the New ACA, NY & NJ Board Members

Please welcome the newest additions to our ACA, NY and NJ Board of Directors. With a diverse group of experiences, we are so excited to have these camp industry leaders join our Board this coming Fall. 

Franya Barnett
Chief Financial Officer, CampGroup
Current ACA, NY & NJ Board Member
Incoming Treasurer

Franya began her career as an attorney at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP before moving to J.P. Morgan Private Bank to work with their private clients. Following a summer as the Program Director at Camp Winadu in 2011, she returned to CampGroup as its Chief Financial Officer in 2013. Franya received her B.A. from Princeton University and her J.D. from Boston University School of Law.

Alison Besunder
Attorney at Arden Besunder

Allison's immediate and extended family has always had a strong belief in the benefits of camp. She attended Camp Monroe for five years, as did her brother, and day camp before that. Allison strongly believes in the role of camp in a child’s development, including the promotion of independence, self-reliance, and community. Her oldest daughter will be starting her fourth summer at Camp Wayne for Girls and she has seen year after year how she has flourished and grown from her camp experience. Her youngest daughter will be starting her first summer at Camp Wayne this year (and has not stopped talking about it!). 

Allison previously represented ACA, NJ & NY in a dispute with Hilton in or about 2008-2009, when she was at a larger law firm. Although she currently focuses her practice and marketing in the area of Trusts & Estates and related litigation, she continues to represent clients in commercial and civil litigation. Allison served on her co-op board for 7 years and previously served a 3-year term as Trustee on her synagogue board. Her legal background has benefited her role on these boards from an “issue spotting” standpoint, both in the ability to provide quick input on legal issues relative to board discussions or proposed projects, and to answer questions or, when the topic is beyond her knowledge, suggest resources for answering them. More information about Allison's legal practice and professional background is available on her website (www.besunderlaw.com).

Lisa Garcia
Senior Director of Y Afterschool and Camp

Participating with the board allows Lisa to continue to connect her passion and work with summer camp and all it has to offer. Lisa is in a great position to offer her perspective and experience on urban camps, as well as to serve as an advocate. In her current role, she provides leadership and support to approximately 70 camp sites within the five boroughs of New York City. Many of those camps are government funded, and the majority are in low-income communities. There is a diverse portfolio (fee-based, government funded) across the city as we continue to look at ways to meet each of the community’s needs.

In her role, she provides support to YMCA branches and their Directors in all capacities. For example, camp preparation, training, on-site support, working with stakeholders such as the Department of Education, Department of Health and the Department of Youth & Community Development. In this position, Lisa has gained experience working and supporting all aspects of Day Camp and its uniqueness in what can be a challenging setting – New York City. The programming serves all ages from early childhood to teen camp, day camp to specialty camp, special needs camps and teen leadership camps. Working in an urban camp setting has its unique obstacles and challenges. She can speak to these, touch on common issues and solutions.

In addition, she spent the past 15 years working in NYC Day Camps. Lisa began her camp journey as an International Camp Counselor 19 years ago at the YMCA of Greater New York Resident Camp. She fell in love with all things camp and was lucky enough to make this my profession.

Lisa hasprevious experience with ACA from her time working with resident and day camp for the YMCA of Greater New York. More recently in the last few years, she has become more involved and believe in the work that ACA has continued to do.  Lisa attends Tri-State and is an ACA visitor. She also assisted in co-hosting the Urban Camps Roundtable. She will be a strong advocate on the ACA Board in regards to the Urban Camp Market.

Pam Gregory
President and CEO, Princeton-Blairstown Center

Pam joined PBC in 2013 after spending two years at Cirque du Soleil as Director of Global Citizenship US overseeing corporate giving, employee engagement, public affairs, and the company’s Cirque du Monde programs for at-risk youth. She spent more than 20 years working with at-risk youth though progressively responsible roles at Inwood House, Children For Children, and Girls Quest where she focused on strategic planning, board development, program development & evaluation, and all aspects of fundraising, marketing, and public affairs. Pam has a wealth of experience in social-emotional learning and experiential education, having served as both the Program Director and Executive Director of Trail Blazers, one of the oldest continually operating summer programs for at-risk youth in the U.S. She holds a BA from the University of New Orleans and a MA in Environmental Education from Goddard College. She also completed the Executive Level Program at Columbia Business School’s Institute for Non Profit Management. In 2017, she joined the New Jersey Institute of Technology Martin Tuchman School of Management Advisory Board.

Jeff Goodman
National Business Manager, National Ramah

Jeff has been in camping now as a professional for over twenty years and wants to give back to the camping community. Years ago, primarily before he became a camp professional, Jeff was on the board of Camp Poyntelle Lewis Village. He had been a camper, staff member, employee and camper parent off and on since my his first summer as a camper in 1974 (at the now defunct Camp Potomac where he was voted best all around camper.)  Jeff also attended Camp Lenape (1975 - 1978, sadly also defunct), and Camp Long Lake (1979 - 1981), and worked at Camp Cejwin (1982) and Camp Poyntelle Lewis Village (1983 – 1987). He was a staff member at Camp Poyntelle the night before he started law school in 1987. Jeff's children have each attended one of their day camps for five summers and his nineteen year old daughter just completed her 11th summer at one of their overnight camps. Jeff's sixteen year old son just completed his 9th summer of overnight camp at one of their camps. Jeff has been a standards visitor for a number of years and has done a number of standards visits over the years including three last summer.

Resume:

  • National Business Manager – National Ramah Commission, Inc. August 1, 2018 – Present
  • Attorney/Litigator – Latham & Watkins; Mudge Rose Guthrie Alexander & Ferdon; Webster & Sheffield September 1, 1990 – July 31, 1998
  • Secretary, Talcott Woods Owners Association 2013 – Present
  • Board Member, Vice President, First Vice President, Congregation Kneses Tifereth Israel 2009 – 2014
  • Board Member, Camp Poyntelle Lewis Village 1993 – 2000

Cindy Wyatt
Director of Summer and Auxillary Programs, Gill St. Bernard's School

For over 12 years, Cindy has benefited from ACA, NY & NJ  in many ways. Her first experience working with an ACA accredited camp began with Hi Hills in 2007.2008 was Cindy's first Tri-State Convention and it was love at first sight. The attention to detail and the vast topics covered for all aspects of the camp world, along with the energy upon entering the Grand Ballroom and experiencing the keynote speaker was like no other. This experience sparked the desire to unite the Independent School world with ACA. For several years, she has been a part of the programming committee for the Independent School pre-conference workshop. 2010 gave a greater insight into the wonder of ACA, when she became a standards visitor. Cindy feels privileged to work with other camp professionals having the same goal to make camp a safe place with programs to enrich the lives of all who are affiliated. Not just campers but staff and parents as well.  Cindy is honored to be part of the ACA, NY and NJ Board. She can't think of a more progressive organization that she would like to be a part of.

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