We are thrilled to welcome back Jen Shankman as our Camp Director, and to introduce our new Camp Committee Chair, Betty Winn. Both bring a tremendous amount of experience and history to their respective positions and will be outstanding leaders of our camp community.
A MESSAGE FROM JEN:
Camp changes lives in so many ways. This is apparent to everyone who has experienced a summer at camp or watched as their children have changed because of their time away. For those of us who are honored to be able to focus year round to make those two summer months a transformative experience for kids, it is a sacred commitment we make to our community. We hold this intention at the center of what we do. If the experience is fantastic, then that is a life changed for the better.
I am deeply honored to return to Wilshire Boulevard Temple Camps as your Director. When I arrived here 12 years ago, I knew I was about to become a part of something special. I knew I was stepping into a camp deep with meaning and rich in history, a sacred place dedicated to change. I knew from first-hand experience the impact that camp has on people, as I too am a product of Jewish camp.
I return to our camps with a passion to continue to create the opportunity for current campers to find meaning and growth, and for all our future campers in the years to come to experience a life-changing time at camp. I am excited to see these holy moments of transformation, to help children and counselors grow to become the best versions of themselves, and then to watch them push themselves even further and go out and make a difference in the world. This is why I return to camp.
Our future holds limitless possibilities. We continue to build on the bedrock strength of our past as we create the long-term plans for our homecoming in Malibu. We also place at the center of what we do the immediacy of the coming summer.
Our camps have survived so much because of partnerships with campers, parents, alumni, staff, and those beyond our immediate camp circle. For that, we are truly blessed. I look forward to building relationships with each of you as we continue to envision and grow our camps.
A MESSAGE FROM BETTY:
As a proud CHK (Leadership ’70) and Hilltop alum, parent of two CHK campers (Leadership 2000 and 2003), and a grandparent of future campers, I am honored to serve as the Chair of Wilshire Boulevard Temple Camps Camp Committee.
My first summer at camp was when I was four years old, and my father was the camp doctor. I could not wait until I was old enough to go to camp as a camper! Over the next nine years, I learned lessons at camp that have helped me as I’ve navigated through my adult life.
Lessons of independence, building resilience, forming lifelong friendships, opportunities for leadership, and my strong Jewish identity are all products of my camp experiences. As a Jewish educator, I recognize the incredible impact that Jewish camping has on raising our children and building the next generation of Jewish leaders. I am fortunate to have served on the Camp Committee for the past eight years with an incredible group of dedicated lay leaders and a strong and committed professional staff. We all know that the past three years have been exceptionally challenging for our camps; from fires, to floods, to COVID, our camp leadership has shown tremendous strength, and our camp community continues to inspire me on a daily basis. Even with all of these challenges, there is so much to celebrate.
The next few years will present us with exciting challenges and opportunities. As we reimagine our camps and Conference Center, we look forward to reaching out to our camp community for advice and support. With your involvement, our camps will continue to thrive, providing transformative and life-changing experiences for our children and staff. I look forward to your participation!