Our Staff

Camp Kesem Emory is made up of  very different, quirky coordinators who come together and work hard throughout the year to make the magic of Camp Kesem a success.

There are five committees (Development, Operations, Outreach, Volunteer, CIT, and Public Relations), plus two co-directors!

Camp Kesem Emory: Executive Board Members

Co-Director: Jessica “Wobbles” Simon


Wobbles got her name because she wobbles when she walks due to her club foot. Weird talents include simultaneously whistling and humming to create the sound of an airplane taking off, wiggling her ears, and touching her tongue to her nose. She loves to draw abstract drawings, some of which were once in a Starbucks near her home. The profits from the drawings she sold were given to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Her favorite book is “The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles” by Julie Edwards because 1) Who wouldn’t read a book with Whangdoodle in it’s title? ; 2) A book by Julie Edwards, or rather Maria from “The Sound of Music”, can’t be bad; 3) It’s an amazing book. Camp Kesem is her favorite activity at school, and her first time as a counselor last summer was the best week ever. Her favorite camp song is the Banana song (“Form banana, peel banana, go bananas!!”). She is so excited to be a co-director this year!

Co-Director: Josephine “M&M’s” Akinwumiju

7 M&M’s got her camp name because—you guessed it—M&M’s are her favorite! In fact, she loves chocolate so much, she thinks it should be a food category. Fruit, vegetables, grains, protein, dairy, and chocolate. M&M’s loves popping out and scaring people, and her favorite foods are bacon and chocolate (of course). She has a very sarcastic humor and considers herself to be one of the funniest people she knows. Others might have their own opinions on her sense of humor, but nevertheless, she loves making people laugh and she loves having fun. Her favorite time at camp is having Cabin Chats, and whether it’s talking about food or boys or anything, she’s never had a Chat she didn’t love. Fun fact: when M&M’s talks to people speaking with a British accent, she accidently begins to talk with a British accent too. Any people with British accents out there?

Volunteer Coordinator: Alisha “Beamz” Bhimani

Now welcome this beam of sunshine, Beamz! Her camp name is a nickname from her high school flag football team. Her favorite time of the year is summer, because she loves the sunshine, seashells, swimming, and (you guessed it) camp! Her favorite animal is a dolphin, but that might change since she likes doing “the Jellyfish” so much. She think she’s quite sassy and sarcastic (and her friends agree), but she has her fair share of warm-and-fuzzies at camp. Her favorite camp moments were bonding with campers during cabin chats and singing along to “Lean on Me” during closing circle. When she’s not doing Camp Kesem stuff, she’s busy trying to survive nursing school, doing 12 hours shifts at the hospital, or just trying to catch up on sleep. With both nursing and Camp Kesem, Beamz does it for the kids, and she wants to work with kids all of her life.

Volunteer Coordinator: Lucky “Lucky Charms” Khambounheuang

luckyWe are lucky to have this guy on our exec board! Hailing from Habersham in Northeast GA, say hello to Lucky Charms! He gets his name from the cereal because it’s the only one with magical marshmallows. Since we’re talking about food, it’s safe to say that Lucky Charms loves it.  He loves tomato sauce (but hates tomatoes), so it makes sense that his favorite food is spaghetti and meatballs.  The fourth of July is his favorite holiday because of the family time, fireworks, and of course, the BBQ! Lucky Charms enjoys time with his Kesem family too! He loves camp, so it’s no surprise that he loves nature as well.  When he’s not doing Camp Kesem things, he enjoys hiking (short paths though) and going running! His favorite day of the week is Friday, because that’s when he blasts “Last Friday Night” by Katy Perry and dances. Along with Katy Perry, he enjoys channeling his inner diva through the songs of Ariana Grande, Beyoncé, and Sam Smith!  Lucky Charms is full of energy, so his favorite memories from camp were “Ride the Pony” and shaving cream fights.

Operations Coordinator: Adriana “Mucho” Reyes


Mucho got her name because she’s always “Mucho” pleased to meet other people! It’s really easy to get to know her because she loves laughing, most types of movies, and most types of music (Coldplay, Andy Grammar, Mumford & Sons, Colbie Caillat, to name a few) – basically anything that doesn’t scare the pants off her. She’s from Huntsville, AL (the Rocket City!), and she loves being outside in nature and stargazing in my free time. One thing she must remember to tell the camp staff: camp is never complete without having chicken nuggets for dinner.

Operations Coordinator: Will “Zero” Rush

1394401_3681431731891_287721381_n Zero gets his name from the movie “Holes.” When deciding his name, “Holes” was the first movie he thought  of that involved a summer camp, and it was only later when he realized he had gotten his name from a movie where children are forced to dig holes as punishment. When not rethinking his choice of name, Zero loves to spend his time not smiling, hanging out with Beamz, and remembering the delicious meat patty they served at camp this year. If you see Zero around camp this year, make sure to go up to him and say hi! While he may not be smiling on the outside, I promise you that he’s smiling on the inside!! :-)

Treasurer: Jackie “F’real” Glodener


F’real?! F’real! No, F’real. Her camp name (which you should’ve got by now) comes from the brand of F’real smoothies and the fact that she just likes to say her name. A lot. Some of her talents include (but are not limited to) speaking Russian, shaping her tongue into a 3-leaf clover (it’s quite fascinating), and being able to write mirror image words with only her left hand (although she’s right handed). Her favorite game is Huggermugger, which is actually a real word in the English language (look it up!), and her favorite camp memories include getting to hear her girls sharing their stories and finding her family at camp. If you ever see F’real around campus or around camp, be sure to approach her and say hi! She’s a friendly and awesome person to have in your life. F’real.

Development Coordinator: Daniel “Squirt” Hills

12Rip it, roll it, and punch it. That’s Squirt’s motto, and this radical guy is always in high gear. He boasts that he can play every instrument in the world (just not that greatly), but he specializes in at least 8 of them (but he can’t play them at the same time… yet). His favorite day is Tuesday because it means that he made it past Monday, and he enjoys Jiu-Jitsu and rock-climbing in his free time. One of his best memory at camp was watching everyone play Capture the Flag in the mud last year (while he stayed clean). His claim to fame was being picked by a talent agent to be in a cereal commercial as a kid, but the show never aired. Nevertheless, if you’re lucky and stalker-ish enough, you might be able to hear almost-famous Squirt singing or humming his favorite camp song, “Brown Squirrel.” Be sure to get his autograph too. Maybe you’ll see him on TV one day.

Development Coordinator: Katrina “Katraytray” Peed

Hey I’m Katraytray and born and raised in Georgia! I love to dance and have for 17 years now! My favorite color is yellow because it’s happy and I love sunflowers! I hardcore fan girl over Andy Grammer (got to meet him this summer) and love his positive lyrics and persona. I aspire to be like Betty White in old age. I also love lake sports and anything on the water! I Kesem because I come from a family strongly affected by a chronically ill parent and I was so inspired by each and every camper last summer! So excited to plan and attend CK Emory 2015!

Outreach Coordinator: Sarah “Giggles” Hesse


Giggles spends a lot of her spare time laughing. If she’s not laughing upright, then she is most likely falling out of a chair laughing, rolling on the floor laughing, or laughing so hard she’s gasping for air. If Giggles could go anywhere in the world, she would most likely choose to travel EVERYWHERE. If you don’t hear Giggles humming or singing a tune, then something must be out of place. She hails from Lithonia, Georgia, a town relatively close to the huge mass of granite, otherwise known as Stone Mountain. A perfect day in the life of Giggles would be set within the confines of her room in her pajamas reading nonfiction novels and listening to Ellie Goulding, John Mayer, or Laura Mvula. Surprisingly, the only camping she has ever done is in the vast green grass of her friend’s backyard. Giggles will eat almost anything besides bananas considering she is highly allergic to their awful taste.

Outreach Coordinator: Kara “Karaboo” Goldstone

Say hello to Karaboo! Don’t confuse her with the animal (even though she does like making Chubaka noises), because her camp name is a nickname from one of her friends. Karaboo comes from her hometown of Penfield, NY but resides in Florida. She’s quite sarcastic, and extremely hilarious. She adds cracking jokes to a long list of things she likes to do, including playing viola, tap dancing, and volunteering at a children’s hospital! With all of the things she does, it’s only right that Saturday is her favorite, and most relaxing day. She loved the shaving cream war at camp, probably because it reminds her of snow and her favorite time of the year, Christmas! She also enjoyed the s’mores at camp, and she loves eating them, sushi, and mac and cheese, but not at the same time!

Counselor in Training (CIT) Program Coordinator: Caleb “Skittles” Lee


SKITTLES! (Taste the rainbow). Skittles favorite candy is, yes, Skittles! His favorite holiday and favorite day of the year is thanksgiving because of all the turkey and ham and stuffing and mashed potatoes and gravy and gravy and gravy. He also gets to see his family and everyone he loves, too. He plays basketball and hates country music, but –to the ladies- he has a soft side, too! Yes, Skittles plays the violin. Skittles can’t get enough high-calorie food, apparently, and some of his other favorite foods include steak and pizza. His favorite thing to do at camp (you guessed it!) is eating good ol’ mac and cheese. He leaves you now with a joke; Q: How are Santa Claus and Skittles alike? A: They both have beards, besides the Skittles.

Marketing and Public Relations Coordinator: Ugochi “KitKat” Uzoigwe

FullSizeRender (1).jpgSay “hey hey” to KitKat! KitKat’s camp name is in honor of her love of chocolate and the candy she named herself after.  KitKat has a sweet tooth (desserts are her favorite food group), but she could survive on macaroni and cheese and pineapples for the rest of her life. She also thinks she’s sweet too, along with being silly and laid-back. At camp, she enjoyed running around and playing games with her campers and she gets loose, and she get’s funky! That’s her favorite camp song and she enjoys dancing at and away from camp. When she’s not doing Camp Kesem stuff, her mostest bestest things to do are sing, listen to music, eat, and of course take naps!

Marketing and Public Relations Coordinator: Hannah “Smiley” Higgins

unnamedWe’re all smiles for Smiley! Smiley is from Decatur, GA, and she got her camp name because she loves to smile and bring joy to those around her.  In addition to being happy, she describes her personality as a mix of fun, awesomeness, love, kindness and smarts. Her favorite foods are chicken and pizza, and she likes sliced tomatoes and vinegar! She enjoys working with kids too, and she even taught her former kindergarten after school students to perform a song through American Sign Language. Something interesting about Smiley is that she used to be a childhood clown named Giggles! She left the “clowning” in the past, she still enjoys a good joke and silly dance (which is probably why she loves the camp song “Little Sally Walker”). Speaking of camp, her favorite camp activity is swimming and her favorite camp food is (you guessed it…) s’mores! When she’s not doing Kesem stuff, she enjoys singing, writing music, and cuddling up with a good book. She also loves spending time with friends and family.