Dear Parents, Alumni, Staff, and Friends,
Last fall I wrote to you to express optimism about our search for the next Aloha Camp Director. I promised we would be uncompromising in our resolve to find just the right leader to guide this vibrant program: someone who would help us navigate the challenges of today, and continue to steward and strengthen Aloha.
I am happy to announce we have found such a Camp Director in Charlotte Messervy and that she is very excited to begin her tenure with the Alohas in mid-February.
Though our search took us all the way to Sydney, Australia, her home for the last 7 years, Charlotte is an alumna of our programs and is originally from the Boston area. As a Hive and Aloha camper from 1996 – 2002, a Midi, Unit Head, and Department Head until 2008, she explained in her application that “The Aloha Way” has always resonated with her as she has used the teachings and experience of the Alohas throughout her professional and personal life. In her words, “The farther away I’ve gotten from camp, the more special I recognize it is. Camp remains the most powerful teacher of my lifetime.”
Charlotte’s professional expertise as a facilitator and solution designer has centered around creating experiential learning and leadership development programs. She has extensive experience coaching young professionals—similar in age to Aloha’s counselors—and managing clients of varying backgrounds. An accomplished public speaker, she has moderated events, participated on panels, and delivered keynote addresses to groups like the University of Technology Sydney, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and Insurance Australia Group.
Charlotte will be a tremendous asset and role model for all Aloha campers and staff. She possesses the leadership and communication skills to excel in the many facets of this role and possesses a dynamic creativity, curiosity—as well as a knack for keen observation—that quickly spreads to those around her.
“I was particularly impressed in the interview process with the thought and care Charlotte put into her sample counselor training session. She integrated our current approach to coaching campers and enhanced it with tools and skills she felt would be valuable to counselors both in their jobs at camp and in their future career. I walked out of her training session and used the tools she shared 15 minutes later with both of my teenagers!” reflected Elyse Johnson Lyons, Aloha Foundation Trustee and a member of the search committee.
Nekesa Straker, also an Aloha Foundation Trustee and member of the search committee said, “Having known Char as a camper and counselor, I was excited to see her apply to be the next Aloha Director. She will bring a level of energy and enthusiasm, along with a sense of calm and reflection to the role, that campers and counselors will benefit from.”
I am confident Charlotte and her team will continue to deliver the transformative summer experiences we have been offering since 1905.
Char, her husband Mike, and their 16-month-old daughter Georgia, who has been brought up singing camp songs, are thrilled to be moving from Sydney to Fairlee. While the move to the United States was planned, Fairlee did not become the destination until now. Mike spent his childhood going to scout camp in the UK where he is originally from and loves nothing more than sitting by a campfire. Charlotte also enjoys yoga and meditation, taking photographs, and doing the New York Times Crossword.
My sincere thanks to all those who shared our job description with potential candidates, contributed survey feedback, and offered assistance, especially our search committee: Ben Cole (Buildings & Grounds Director); Elyse Johnson Lyons (Trustee, Parent, Former Hive Counselor and Hive/Aloha Camper); Bryan Partridge (Lanakila Director); Ellie Thompson Pennell (Hive Director): Arlynn Polletta (Director of Equity, Inclusion, and Outreach); Lindsay Stelljes (Former Hive/Aloha Camper and Current Aloha Camp Staff), and Nekesa Straker (Trustee, Former Aloha Counselor and Aloha Camper).
Please join me in welcoming Charlotte back to our community in this new position.
Vanessa Mendillo Riegler, Executive Director