Key Kamp Kiwanis People
Over the years many individuals have played key roles in the development and operation of Kamp Kiwanis. This page highlights some of them.
- Rebecca L. Clemence, Executive Director, 2005-
- NancyAnn Nowak, Executive Director, 2001-04
- Chris Henske, Executive Director, 1986-1996
- John G. Gaglione and Frank D'Orazi
- Orlando "Lindy" Marrazzo
- Foundation Presidents
- Foundation Secretaries
Rebecca L. Clemence, Kamp Kiwanis Executive Director
Rebecca L. Clemence began work as the Executive Director in January 2005. Rebecca lives in the home next door to camp.
Rebecca has spent her life in camp. She began camp as a camper in 1983 and attended camp as a camper for two summers. When Rebecca was just 14 she began working at camp as a summer job at a camp called Teens Reaching Out to Help, which was geared towards children with developmental disabilities. From there and throughout college Rebecca worked at various types of camps throughout the country. The camps were varied and served those in an economically upper class and those that were for children with an economic need.
After college, Rebecca worked as a supervisor at a shelter and group home for children called The Child Crisis Center in Mesa, Arizona. The focus of the center was to serve children that were abused, homeless, in need of emergency shelter or those that needed a therapeutic environment to succeed in placement opportunities. She worked there for 5 years, leaving each summer to attend summer camp. After this amazing experience, Rebecca decided to devote her career to summer camp. She then moved throughout the country directing summer camps, beginning her journey in Oregon, later moving to Maine, Rhode Island, Michigan and finally Massachusetts.
For several years Rebecca worked for the Girl Scouts and directed two camps under their name. It was here that Rebecca truly began to appreciate working for non-profits organizations that also had a mission of service to others.
In order to be closer to her friends Rebecca moved back to Massachusetts to direct Horizons for Youth Summer Camp in Sharon. After 66 years of providing summer camp opportunities for at-risk youth, it decided to close its doors. So an excellent opportunity for her was had when the New York District of Kiwanis Foundation advertised for a new Executive Director in the fall of 2004.
Rebecca is an American Red Cross Instructor, a Girl Scouts Master Trainer, has gone through the American Camp Association Basic Camp Director Course and is an American Camp Association Visitor. Please do not hesitate to contact her to schedule a presentation. She is excited to meet you all and help with any questions you have regarding Kamp Kiwanis.
Executive Director NancyAnn Nowak
NancyAnn Nowak served a Executive Director of Kamp Kiwanis for the 2001-04 seasons.
During the summer of 2002, NancyAnn's second summer season at Kamp Kiwanis, the Kamp was pleased to fill all camper reservations, a feat which had not happened in some time.
During her four seasons at Kamp Kiwanis, she oversaw many improvements at the Kamp, including the installation of a new pool, the construction of new cabins, and the growth of the Adult program.
Executive Kamp Director Chris Henske
In the fall of 1996, after serving as the Executive Director for more than 10 years, Chris Henske resigned his position and left to explore new adventures in Australia, his wife Allison's homeland.
Because of his expertise as a swimming pool contractor, Chris was initially asked by the Foundation to just visit the camp and recommend how to repair the in-ground swimming pool. He not only came and advised but stayed on to oversee the repairs himself. Chris liked the area so well that he sold his business on Long Island and agreed to take the position as the camp's director. That position had been vacated by the unexpected death of former director Thomas Filliponi, who had died just before the camp session ended the prior summer.
One thing immediately evident to Chris was the fact that the camp desperately needed someone with a civil engineering background as badly as it needed an executive director. Year upon year because of funding shortages, the camp had been piecemealed together with chewing gum, bailing wire, and not much else, as Chris stated. While some of the prior work had been accomplished by professionals, over the years there had been an equal number of volunteers with good intentions but few skills.
The legacy that Chris left behind was remarkable. Although often criticized for his unorthodox and even rude management style, his tenacity brought the camp through some very dark years and eventually rekindled a new hope for its future.
John G. Gaglione and Frank D'Orazi
Oct 1, 1997 - Gehrig and Ruth ... Orville and Wilbur Wright ... Lewis and Clark ... every now and then, in some walk of life, there comes an inimitable pair, each with their own assets and experiences, who will forever change the world around them. In our corner of Kiwanis International, that statement can be applied to our recently retired New York District Foundation President and Vice President - John G. Gaglione and Frank D'Orazi.
Over most of the past decade, this dynamic duo has had an impact on literally thousands of young lives, as the catalytic force in making OUR "Kamp Kiwanis" what it is today - an immense source of pride for New York District Kiwanians and an incredible opportunity for the underprivileged and physically challenged to experience one of the great joys of childhood.
They each came to the Foundation with considerable credentials in other venues. A Distinguished Lt. Gov. of the Long Island South Central Division in 1980-81, John was a long time community leader and former Little League Commissioner in East Meadow, where a ballfield is named in his honor. John served for 12 years on the Foundation Board, including two as vice president and eight as president.
A Distinguished Past Lieutenant Governor, Frank had been a phenomenal influence on his Queens West division and its Sports Foundation. During his career he served as president of Greater Woodhaven Development Corp., chairman of the Twelve Towns YMCA, a member of the Queens Lighthouse for the Blind, and was recognized by the Salvation Army for his community work. He served on the Foundation Board for nine years, including the last seven as its vice-president.
Together, D'Orazi and Gaglione oversaw the passage of new by-laws and the restructuring of the board; the expansion and beautification of Kamp Kiwanis; the birth and growth of the Anton J. Kaiser medallion program with its distinctive Burgundy jackets; and the increasing success of the Janis Calabrese golf tournament. Under their careful guidance, Kamp Kiwanis became an accredited and respected program.
Both of these gentlemen and gentle men will be the first to say none of this could have happened without the Kiwanis leaders, members and clubs throughout the district who have actively supported the Foundation during their tenure.
Orlando "Lindy" Marrazzo
The surprise on May 5, 2007, at the annual Kamp Kiwanis Open House was the dedication of the administration building to honor District Foundation President Orlando "Lindy" Marrazzo.
It was a surprise not only to the Kiwanians from around the district who attended the event, but also to Marrazzo, as other Foundation board members had succeeded in secretly getting his family to the Kamp so they would be present without him knowing it. Once they appeared, Marrazzo realized what was behind the cardboard welcome sign about to be taken down by Foundation Vice President Sal Anelli.
Marrazzo, the foundation board president for 10 years, is shown at left, wearing a sports jacket and tie, with his family. The plaque is shown below.
In making the dedication, Anelli praised Marrazzo not only for his efforts on behalf of the kamp, but his ability to both get others behind the projects at the kamp and his willingness to support others who proposed development projects there.