Meet Our Directors
Kelly came to Camp Speers YMCA with 10 years of YMCA and camping experience that spans from the East Coast to Colorado. The majority of her camping career was spent at Frost Valley YMCA in the Catskill Mountains, north of New York City. During her tenure there, Kelly served as an American Camp Association (ACA) standards visitor, conducting visits to verify a camp’s compliance with all applicable ACA standards. Kelly brings a commitment to program and operations excellence, a solutions-oriented approach, and a camp philosophy that aligns with the Y's commitment to nurture the potential of young people so they can discover their best selves. Kelly is leading her team as they strive to help Camp Speers YMCA grow and improve daily.
Cassandra (also known as Cassie) started at Camp Speers in May 2018, working as our receptionist. Camp Speers is the first camp she’s worked for but that did not stop her from jumping right in! She loves to joke around, and her kind-heartedness is evident in everything she does. Within a short amount of time, Cassie advanced to become our camp Registrar. Cassie has worked in customer service and accounting all her life. Before coming to Camp Speers, she gained valuable professional experience working in different office environments from automobile dealerships to being a marketing assistant at a healthcare software company. Cassie’s favorite thing at camp is getting to meet the families and campers in person. Camper check-in day is one of the best days of the week for her! Cassie’s goal at camp is to help brighten people’s day, whether it is a camper, a parent or a fellow staff member.
Director of Outdoor Education and Group Services
Jackie became a part of the Camp Speers YMCA team in 2019 as the Director of Outdoor Education and Group Services. She comes to Speers with 12 years of experience as a public school teacher and 20 years working and volunteering with resident and day camp programs with Girl Scout camps in Pennsylvania. She’s worked in many areas of camp, starting in the kitchen then working at the barn, as a general counselor, program director and camp director. Jackie is excited about merging her passions for teaching and the outdoors to help expand the outdoor education program at Camp Speers. Some of Jackie’s favorite things to do at camp are horseback riding, kayaking, and climbing. Jackie’s camp goal is to help each camper leave knowing they are important and can make a difference in the world.
Equestrian Director & Booking Coordinator
Jessica joined the Camp Speers YMCA family in 2016 as a senior riding instructor and stepped into the Equestrian Director role in 2017. Jessica began riding at the age of 12. Once she started riding, there was no turning back! She has spent the past 25 years pursuing her love of horses. After receiving her Associate’s Degree in Equine Science from Centenary College as well as a Bachelor's Degree in Biology, she spent many years as both a working student and managing boarding/lesson facilities. Jessica also holds a Level 3 English and Level 2 Western Instructor Certification from the Certified Horsemanship Association. Her goal at camp is to instill a love and respect for our horses and to help those campers pursue their passion. She loves to see the campers grow in their knowledge and skills during their time at the barn.
Dpaola@philaymca.org, 570-828-2329 ext:3507
Dan began his adventure at Camp Speers YMCA at the age of 5 when he attended our family camp with his family. He continued as a camper and eventually worked as a counselor. Dan returned to Camp Speers in 2014 with over 25 years of construction, property and project management experience. His role as the Facilities Director involves overseeing the day to day running of the property and helping care for camp so it can continue to run smoothly. Dan says the best part of camp these days is simply to see everyone having so much fun. Dan’s goal for Camp Speers is make sure the property is well kept so that the great work and fun can continue.