Songadeewin Staff

Grace Aldrich, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for 6 summers. I live in Briarcliff Manor, NY. I attend Colgate University in Hamilton, New York, studying Environmental Studies and Economics. What I love about Songa is that it encourages young girls to be strong and independent, while also being a fun, supportive community that fosters incredible friendships.

 


Hayley Arader, Staff
2019 is my sixth year on staff.  I was a Songa Camper for six summers. I am originally from Stamford, CT and currently live in Washington, DC. When I’m not working at Songa, I spend my time working on political campaigns! My favorite camp activity is canoeing (with hiking as a close second!).

 


Lindsay Arader, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for 6 summers. I am originally from Stamford, CT and currently live in Brooklyn, NY. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend the graduate program at St. John’s University in Queens, studying Clinical Psychology. I can also be found coaching squash for kids in New York, NY. My favorite Spanish word is “armatoste” which means “cumbersome piece of furniture”.

 

 


Sophie Basseches, Staff
2019 is my second year on staff. I was a Songa camper for eight summers. I’m from Boston, Massachusetts and currently attend Pitzer College in Claremont, California where I study Sociology and Gender Studies. I spent the past 5 months studying in Quito, Ecuador so I can’t wait to come home to Lake Dunmore!

 


Liam Battjes, Arts Village Studio Manager
2019 is my first year on staff. I am originally from Michigan and currently live in Middlebury, VT, where I teach special education and art.   I love to bike, hike, cook and write poetry. What I like about Songa is the mountains and natural beauty.  The inspiring staff and excellent facilities hint at a creative summer.

 

 


Anaya Bernard, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff.  I am from London, England. I attend Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London  where I study Drama and Applied Theatre. I enjoy song writing in my free time. My favorite sport has got to be football! I support a local team called Arsenal.

 

 


Bilodeau

Britney Bilodeau, Laundry
2019 is my 17th year on staff. Originally from Whiting, VT, I currently live in Middlebury, VT. When I’m not working at Songa, I work at other jobs, play softball, and enjoy the outdoors. What I love about Songa is how helpful and friendly everyone is!!!! I enjoy my job and am so thankful for the work opportunities I am given.

 


Alex Bliss, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff.  I am from a small town in England where I live with my family and two crazy dogs. When I am not at camp, I love to travel and explore new places as well as spend time with my family and friends.

 

 


Katka Bogataj, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff.  I am from Slovenia, a small country in Europe, and currently attend the University of Ljubljana where I’m studying social work.  When I am not studying, I spend my time climbing, writing or hanging out with my friends. My favorite memory about camping is that when we were in the middle of nowhere, I still felt safe and calm.

 


Alyssa Breda, Staff


Angela Brisson, Nurse
2019 is my first year on staff. I am originally from Shoreham, VT and currently live in Bridport, VT. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend graduate school at The University of Vermont in Burlington, where I am studying to be a Family Nurse Practitioner.  My favorite thing about summertime in Vermont is the sound of peepers (chorus frogs).

 

 


Helena Bryant, Staff
2019 is my second year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for 7 summers.  I am from Berwyn, Pennsylvania, and attend Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where I am studying theatre.  My first summer camp experience was at Songa in 2008 as a camper in the now Aspen Lodge. What I love about Songa is the friendships that last a lifetime.

 

 


Staff Groups (4)

Kempley Bryant, Wabasso Longhouse Leader
2019 is my 12th year on staff. I live in Berwyn, PA, and teach Kindergarten at a school in Newtown Square, PA. My first summer camp experience was in 2008 when I began working at Songa on the Leadership Team.

 

 


Caroline Clark, Staff
2019 is my second year on staff. I’m from Califon, NJ, and I just graduated from Rutgers University where I majored in visual arts. Something I love about Songa is all of the camp songs that the kids learn and teach each other.

 

 


Lydia Cole, Staff

2019 is my first year on staff. I am from Newcastle, Australia, where I am studying Nutrition and Dietetics. What I love about Songa is how it encourages girls to be strong and independent.

 

 

 


Ella Davidson, Wilderness Trip Leader
2019 is my sixth year on staff. I was a camper for seven years, and was most recently back at Songa to create paintings celebrating the 20th summer! I’m a visual artist currently living in Berkeley, California, and will be starting grad school for Expressive Arts Therapy in the fall. I love summertime, making things, and being part of a community committed to empowering girls and women!

 


Kira Dobson, Nurse Month 2
My first summer camp experience as a camper was at seven years old at camp Montecito Sequoia in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. I was on staff in Annwi at Keewaydin with Ellen in ‘94, and I ran the Wangan Room at Keewaydin in ‘95, ‘96 and ‘97.   This will be my first summer at Songa. I am originally from Arroyo Grande California, USA and currently live in Oceano, California, USA (6 miles away!) but I have lived in Los Angeles, London, New Jersey, New Mexico and one memorable winter in Burlington, VT. When I’m not working at Songa, I spend my time working as an RN for Central Coast Home Health, shooting archery, reading, and going to the Monterey Aquarium with my son Jack who will be at Keewaydin for the first time this summer!


Emily Dryden, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I am from Lakewood, CO. When I’m not working at Songa, I spend my time playing sports, hiking, crocheting, and doing yoga. My favorite food is tortilla chips.

 

 


Fred Dunnington, Driver/Sailing
2019 is my seventh year working at Songa. I grew up in Montreal, then moved to Vermont to major in Environmental Studies at UVM. I retired in 2013 from a career in land use planning, the last 32 years as Town Planner in Middlebury VT.  When I’m not working at Songa, I spend my time cruising on Aviva, a 42’ sailboat, in the western Atlantic and Caribbean, and working around our Middlebury home.  I enjoy driving campers to and from canoe trips, teaching sailing, the wonderful staff and campers, and beautiful Lake Dunmore!


Ellen Flight, Director of Songadeewin

Ellen Flight, Director
2019 is my 40th year as a Keewaydin staff – 21 at Songa, 19 at Dunmore. This summer will be my dog Koko’s 13th season.  I was a Songa camper for eight summers and was on staff one year when I was 17 years old. I live in Middlebury, Vermont and work for Songa year-round. My parents brought me to Keewaydin Dunmore when I was 9 months old and except for a few summers, I have been at Keewaydin or Songadeewin ever since. In the winter I enjoy doing a variety of crafts from jewelry making to cut paper cards to needle crafts.  I also play Mahjong and Dominos with friends, sing in a choir, and assist my 89 year old mother who also lives in Middlebury. I am the president of both my condo board and the Vermont Camp Association.


Kathy Gill, Driver
2019 is my fourth year on staff.  I live in Shoreham, Vermont and drive a school bus during the school year. I like seeing that my passengers have a safe and enjoyable ride and seeing so many wonderful places along the way.


Elizabeth Golden, Camp Mom
2019 is my first year on staff. I am originally from Woodbridge, New Jersey and currently live in
Burlington, VT. When I’m not working at Songa, I spend my time volunteering as a Girl Scout leader, Flynn Center Spirit and Champlain Valley UU Society Green Sanctuary Program Chairperson. I have two grown children, Chrissy and Robby Golden, living nearby. My first summer camp experience was in the Adirondack Mountains.


Nell Gridley, Office
2019 is my third year on staff.  I am originally from New York City and just finished my first term of veterinary school at St George’s University. My favorite activities at Songa are the annual corn roast and the Saturday Spectacular. I love seeing the girls make up skits and dances, and break out of their comfort zones!

 


Zoey Gringlas, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff. Prior to being on Staff, I was a Songa Camper for seven summers. I am originally from Pound Ridge, New York and currently attend Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut, majoring in English and Hispanic Literature. What I love about Songa is the opportunity it provides for campers to form deep and powerful bonds, with each other and with their natural surroundings.

 


Shae Gwydir, Staff
2019 is my second year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for 6 summers (7 including Wilderness).  I am from Port Jefferson, NY. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, studying Dance, Rhetoric and Education.  What I love about Songa is the opportunity to create lifelong friendships with powerful, strong women.


Hare, J

Jenn Hare, Nawaiwan Longhouse Leader
2019 is my 14th year on staff. Before that, I was a Songa camper for four summers. I am a high school history teacher and I live in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At camp, I love to be on the water teaching sailing and canoeing. My favorite thing to do is help campers make skits for the Saturday Spectacular.

 


Hope Hoffman, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I am originally from New Orleans and currently live in Baton Rouge, where I attend Louisiana State University, studying Marketing with a minor in graphic design and computer engineering. My favorite show to binge watch is Friends with The Office as a close second.

 

 


Ellie Holmgren, Staff Month 1
2019 is my first year on staff. I am originally from Meadville, PA and currently live in Big Bear, CA working at an outdoor science school while rock climbing and camping on the weekends! My favorite thing is to be outdoors! From canoeing to rock climbing to backpacking, I love it all.


Marisa Kiefaber, Songa Wilderness Staff
2019 is my fifth year on staff. I live in Rutland, Vermont, where I am a 5th grade teacher. I spend my free time hiking, biking, and skiing with friends.  My favorite foods are mangoes and chocolate lava cake.

 

 


Nina Knight, Staff
2019 is my second year on stuff, and I was a Songa camper for nine summers. I’m from Boston, Massachusetts and have just finished my first year at Stanford University. What I love about Songa is the community of genuine support between females, pushing us to be our best selves.

 


Katra Kosir, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff.  I am originally from Škofja Loka in Slovenia. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend Faculty of Education where I study Preschool Education. My favorite things to do are hanging out with friends and traveling.


Lea Kramberg, Staff
2019 is my fourth year on staff. I was a camper for seven summers. I live in Rockaway Beach, New York. During the school year I graduated with my Master’s in Education, and taught 6th and 8th grade math. My favorite hobby is baking; this past winter I won second place in a cookie competition!

 


Sophie Krichevsky, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff.  I was a Songa Camper for five summers, prior to going on Wilderness. I am from New Rochelle, NY and currently live in attend Kenyon College in Gambier, OH where I major in American Studies. What I love about Songa is that it not only allows young women to move outside of their comfort zones, but encourages it.

 

 


Shannon LaRose, Driver
2019 is my first summer on staff.  I’ve lived in Middlebury VT, for the past 12 years with my wife and our daughter. When I’m not working at Songa, I work at the Ripton Elementary School in Ripton, just a stone’s throw from Songa. I like to spend time riding my motorcycle, playing music, enjoying the beauty of Vermont and spending quality time with friends and family. My favorite book is The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck.  I love this novel because it gives a voice to people who are often left voiceless and forgotten.


Leng, Cilla

Cilla Leng, Office Staff/Fiber Arts
2019 is my fifth year on the Songa staff, and my 19th year with the Keewaydin Foundation. I live in Middlebury, VT, where you can usually find me reading, sewing, knitting, golfing, or walking. What I love about Songa is that the campers and staff are always so upbeat and fun to work with.

 


Lynn SH

Sarah Lynn, Head Driver/Staff
2019 is my 19th year on staff. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, I currently live in Middlebury, Vermont. I’ve just retired from Ripton Elementary School. My first summer camp experience was eight weeks at Camp Green Cove in North Carolina as a nine-year-old and I’ve been a camper at heart ever since.

 


Mammen

Dorothy Mammen, Assistant Director
2019 is my seventh year on staff, and Middlebury, VT is my home.  When I’m not working at Songa, I spend my time sewing and quilting, hiking, snorkeling, and sailing in the Western Caribbean on Aviva, a 42-foot sailboat. What I love about working at Songa:  the magical sound of the loons calling on Lake Dunmore at night, and teaching activities I love — sewing and sailing.

 


Margolin

Nancy Margolin, Wangan Room
2019 is my seventh year on staff. I was a Songa camper for four summers at the old Songa in the 1960s.  I have two daughters who were Songa campers here on Lake Dunmore, and one was also on Songa staff for several years. I am a retired librarian and a freelance editor living in Burlington, VT with my husband, Peter, who sometimes helps out at camp.

 


Annika McGraw, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for eight summers. I am from Newton, Massachusetts and currently attend Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, where I am studying pre-health and German. What I love about Songa is the way it offers so many opportunities for girls both to learn and to share their knowledge.

 


Seanna McGraw, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for 8 summers. I am from Newton, MA. This fall I will attend the University of Vermont, studying Food Systems. My favorite part about Songa is the trips because they allow us to prove our physical and emotional strength to ourselves, unlike anything else.

 


McKnight

Maddy McKnight, Staff Month 2
2019 is my fourth year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for seven summers. Originally from Brooklyn, New York, I currently attend Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, studying Chemistry and Spanish. My favorite things to do are play basketball and the guitar.

 


Amy McNeill, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I am from Dublin, Ireland. I attend Maynooth University, County Kildare, Ireland, studying Biotechnology. My favorite thing to do is being outdoors, whether it’s just going for a short walk through the forest or taking a swim in the lake. I’ve been involved with the scouts since a young age so I spent a lot of time camping and hiking. It’s something I really enjoy and I’m so grateful of this opportunity to work at Songa. 

 

 

 

 


Katja Melavc, Staff
2019 is my fourth year on staff. I am from Slovenia and attend the University of Ljubljana.  My favorite activities are playing volleyball, singing, dancing and especially I love working with kids.

 

 


Kenna Melvin, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for four summers. I am from Windham, NH. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO where I study Marketing. What I love about Songa is the perfect balance between in-camp activities and tripping which creates the perfect summer home environment.

 

 

 


Claire Misko, Head of Arts & Crafts Month 1 
2019 is my eighth year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for three years. Originally from Malvern, Pennsylvania, I currently live in West Chester, Pennsylvania. When I’m not working at Songa, I am a mom, artist, yoga instructor, Reiki practitioner, Hospice volunteer, gardener and music lover! The thing I love about Songa is that I still get excited to go to camp! I can’t wait to try everything, to expand, to learn, and to spend time with truly exceptional women.

 


Tate Mitchell, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff. Originally from Brookline MA, I currently live in Queens, NY where I am working full-time as an actor in New York City. I love Songa because it is a place for girls to make lifelong friendships, and gain lifelong confidence in themselves and their abilities.

 


Kaitlin Mort, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff. Having grown up in the Blue Mountains of Australia, I love spending time outdoors; especially hiking and camping. I studied an honours degree in nutrition and dietetics at the University of Wollongong, and have been traveling the world ever since. I’m excited to be surrounded by my Songa Sisters again this summer singing camp songs together.

 

 


Emily “Murphy” Murphy, Willoughby Longhouse Leader
2019 is my fourth summer at camp. I am from Seattle, WA and just graduated from Gonzaga University with my Master’s in Teaching. When I am not at camp, I work with high schoolers teaching Social Studies or English Language Learners. What I love most about Songa are the relationships that we are able to build with each other!

 


Abby (Newkirk) Opar, Mattagami Longhouse Leader
2019 is my eleventh year on staff.  I am originally from Weybridge, VT. I currently live in Charlotte, NC and teach Middle School English Language Arts and Social Studies. What I love about Songa is how it models the ideals of community. Songa is a place that can foster both independence and belonging at the same time.

 


Rocio Parra-Barranco, Staff
2019 is my second year on the Songa staff. I am from Valencia, Spain, where I attend Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, studying Industrial Engineering. My first summer camp experience was unforgettable. It taught me self-confidence and how to live together, cooperate, and respect each other.

 


Steph Patch, Store & Riflery Month 1
2019 is my 16th year on staff.


Lua Piovano, Photographer
2019 is my second year on staff. I am originally from Newport, Pennsylvania and currently live in Brandon, VT. I enjoy participating in lots of theater, studying in the outdoors, and playing the baritone ukulele. My first summer camp experience was attending a local day camp at age 6. I’ve been involved with summer camps in some capacity nearly every year since then and it’s always a wonderful experience!

 


Nykky Poquette, Head Nurse Month 1
2019 is my second year on the Keewaydin staff, with this being my first year at Songa.  I am originally from Essex, VT and currently live in Williston, VT. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend WGU, Salt Lake City, UT, continuing my nursing education and working at the Specialty Surgery Unit at UVM Medical Center. My favorite thing is waking up on Lake Dunmore and hearing the campers’ stories from their adventures.


Tori Poquette, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I am from Williston, VT. I was a Songa camper for one summer, and my best summer camp experience was my first trip as a camper. In the fall I plan to attend St. Mary’s College in Maryland to study Biology.


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Olivia Primeaux, Staff Month 2
2019 is my sixth year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for nine summers. I am from New Orleans, Louisiana. I just graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a degree in anthropology. What I love most about Songa is the community we create for girls to push themselves in a safe environment and to interact with and learn from other girls of different ages.

 


Raishart,M

Mark Raishart, Driver
2019 is my fourth year on staff. I am originally from Kirtland, Ohio and currently live in Leicester, Vermont. I teach Forestry and Natural Resource Management in Rutland Vermont. My favorite things are my family and the outdoors.  When I combine these two, life couldn’t get any better.

 


Lizeth Ramirez, Staff
This is my first year on the Songa staff. I’m from San Luis Potosi, Mexico where I am studying international business. In my free time I love to do any outdoor activity. I consider myself a friendly, energetic and curious person. What I love about Songa is that it’s a magic, natural place where all the girls improve something about themselves, and where we can make friends from different countries.

 

 


Amber Ramos, Staff Month 2
2019 is my third year on staff Prior to being on Staff, I was a Songa Camper for four (five with Wilderness) summers.  I am originally from Brooklyn, New York and currently live in Brunswick, Maine, where I attend Bowdoin College studying sociology and anthropology. What I love about Songa is that it fosters empowering friendships that stem from young women being around other young women.


Coco Rooney, Staff


Brooke Rubright, Office
2019 is my third year on staff.  I grew up right across the road from Songa, and loved hearing the camp songs and laughter all season long. I am currently studying Graphic Design at Castleton University in Castleton, Vermont.

 


Kailah Russell, Staff
2019 is my first year on Staff. I was a Songa Camper for five summers. I am originally from Bronx, New York. When I am not working at Songa, I attend Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, New York studying Criminology. What I love about Songa is sitting around singing our camp songs.

 


Meilena Sanchez, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff.  I am from Middlebury, VT. I attend the University of Vermont in Burlington, studying psychology and sociology and spend my time eating Chinese food and hanging with friends My favorite artists at the moment are Lennon Stella and Lizzo.

 

 

 


Raissa Sarda, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I´m from Clevelândia, south of Brazil. I work as a lawyer in Brazil. In my free time I love to read, walk and do some outdoor activity.  What I love about Songa is the opportunity to create lifelong friendships with other girls from different places and learn how to be a better woman with them.

 


Erin Severy, Head of Waterfront
2019 is my second year on staff. I am originally from Middlebury, Vermont and currently live in Somerville, Massachusetts. I work as a fourth grade teacher and in my free time love riding my bike and going for long walks around the city.  My first summer camp experience was when I was in fifth grade and I have loved camp ever since! I’m excited for a second summer on the waterfront filled with swimming games and fun!

 


Katja Sirk, Staff
I am originally from Slovenia and currently live in Ljubljana.  I attend the Univiversity of Ljubljana, studying primary education. My favorite activities are swimming, hiking, playing basketball and running.

 

 


Catie Smith, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff, as well as my first year at Songa! I am from New Orleans and attend Loyola University New Orleans. I spend time working at an elementary school and babysitting/nannying. My favorite part about camping is spending time in nature and sharing experiences with friends!

 

 


Isabella St. Onge, Staff Month 1
2019 is my third year on staff. I was a Songa Camper for six summers and take every opportunity I can to get back to Lake Dunmore. I am originally from Bernardsville, NJ and just graduated from Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH where I double majored in economics and government. As much as I love New Hampshire, Vermont always has my heart. Songa has become my home away from home. I am so happy to spend first month here at camp before I head out in August to volunteer in the Peace Corps.


Julianna St.Onge, Staff
2018 is my second year on staff.  I was a Songa Camper for seven summers. I am originally from Bernardsville, NJ and currently live in Washington, DC. I will be moving to Ann Arbor in the fall to attend law school. I love how much and how loudly Songa women laugh when they are together.

 


Thomas

Sally Thomas, Head of Program
2019 is my eleventh year on staff (plus two at Keewaydin).  I was a Songa Camper for five summers. Originally from New York City, I currently live in Bedford, NH, where I spend my time volunteering in the local schools.  My first summer camp experience was at Songa on Lake Willoughby. Many of the traditions we have at Songa today are the same as when I was a camper.

 


Vanna Vinšer, Staff
2019 is my third year on staff.  I am from Zagreb, Croatia and attend Faculty of Kinesiology, Zagreb, studying physical education and fitness. I spend my time working out, hiking, and biking. What I love about Songa is the spirit and all the activities that can be done in its’ beautiful natural surroundings.


Aven Williams, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff. I am originally from Middlesex, VT and currently live in the Hudson Valley. When I’m not working at Songa, I attend Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York where I study Literature and Anthropology. My favorite meal is breakfast, especially if it’s an omelet or a croissant!

 


Hannah-Jane Wilson, Staff
2019 is my first year on staff.  I am originally from Durham, NH and currently live in Burlington, VT. I am studying Elementary Education at the University of Vermont. I love to spend time at my cabin on Lake Dunmore.  My favorite activity at school is leading the white water kayaking club!

 

 


Wood

Martha Wood, Office Manager 
2019 is my 12th year on staff. I’ve lived most of my life in Vermont. Summers I live at my cozy condo about 15 miles south of Lake Dunmore, and I spend winters in Tucson, Arizona or Fort Myers, Florida. I enjoy sunshine, golfing, gardening, reading and riding the back roads of Vermont in my convertible.

 


Yerxa

Lelia Yerxa, Head of Tripping
2019 is my 15th year on staff. I am from Seattle, WA.  When I’m not working at Songa, I teach second and third grade in Seattle. What I love about Songa is the opportunity to spend time in the wilderness.

 

 


Rebecca Zelis, Arts & Crafts
2019 is my fifth year on staff. Originally from Waterbury, Connecticut, I currently live in Mt. Holly, Vermont. I have a son and daughter at camp, and both will be on Verendrye this year! What I love about Songa is the friendly and supportive community, the beautiful art studios (my “summer office”), listening to the loons at night on Lake Dunmore, getting to meet different people, and learning new things.