Grade K-12 Year Round Staff
Ian has been the Director of Camp Keff since 2010. Before being in the Bay Area he was the Site Director at High Trails Outdoor Science School in Big Bear, CA and has many years of experience working with children in day and residential camp settings at Camp Chi (Chicago JCC) and Young Judea camps. He graduated from Southern Illinois with a degree in Recreation and Leisure Management. Ian is passionate about teaching children about the environment and about creating opportunities for children to explore and try new things.
Assistant Camp Director
Liz joined the Keff team in March 2016. She has spent the last five years working in the nonprofit world and outdoor education as both an Assistant Director and a Naturalist, and most recently hails from Northern Colorado. Her background in education, summer camps, and nonprofits drew her to Camp Keff as a new source for adventure and alternative ways to engage kids with songs and science outside of the classroom. Outside of work you can find Liz hiking with, running with, or (most importantly) cuddling with her beloved 3-year-old pup, Maple.
Preschool Year Round Staff
The PJCC preschool is a very special place to learn and grow. Seeing the world through the eyes of children is a gift of being in education. Erica has had the joy of being in education for over 20 years. Being able to support children, families and staff in life’s journey is a joy. She is excited to be a part of such a special community.
Mia Petty gave 10 years of service to PJCC Camps K-6 from 1993-2004. Mia has made her return home to the PJCC after spending the last 11.5 years working with vulnerable youth and families as a clinician and spent a number of those years training and offering consultation to Child Welfare Workers in several counties in strategies of Family Finding and Family Engagement. Mia returns to us with a BA in Forensic Psychology and a Master of Science in Clinical Psychology from Notre Dame. Mia’s new role as the Camp Director and Assistant Director of Early Childhood Education is a role that she is excited to embrace! She feels so honored to be back within a community that she has always felt strongly connected to and looks forward to serving and building relationships with each and every family here at the PJCC.
Rachel is happy to be joining the PJCC family this year. She has been working in Jewish Early Childhood Education for 12 years of her 16 years in the early childhood field. Rachel has a passion for community building starting with our youngest community members and their families. She feels at home here as a lifelong learner and looks forward to growing alongside the children.
Office and Administration
Char is a native of Cleveland, Ohio, and after triple majoring in Theatre Studies, French, and English at New York University and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, she started work at the hardest job there is: stay-at-home mom. After the birth of her son, Char moved to the Bay Area to be closer to family. Upon enrolling her son in the PJCC Preschool, Char found such a warm, welcoming community and dedicated, talented team of professionals, that she accepted the opportunity to work at the preschool. Char is proud to be both a PJCC ECE employee and parent, she believes that all children need to learn through play so that they can develop into the fascinating little people that they are.
Anthony grew up in rural Pennsylvania where his love of community service grew through Lion’s International which he served in for 8 years. Anthony continued to pursue his joy for community service by working as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician, while earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Public History from Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania in 2012. After college Anthony continued to serve the public through a variety of customer care settings and moved to California in 2013. He is looking forward to working with the children and families that attend the preschool and ensuring that they love their experiences at the PJCC.
Grades K-12 Seasonal Staff
Abby is excited to be joining the Camp Keff team this year. Her background in art and interest in education drew her to this role, and she can’t wait to help campers have a fun and interesting summer. She just finished her freshman year at Stanford University. Outside of work you can find Abby painting, playing the saxophone, or at the beach.
Akhila just graduated from San Mateo High School and will be majoring in Biology at Saint Mary’s College of California in the fall. She loves working with kids and is excited to be working as a Camp Keff counselor this summer. In her free time, she enjoys helping out her community, hiking, hanging out with her friends, reading and watching movies.
This will be Aliya’s second summer working as a counselor here at camp Keff. Outside of being a camp counselor she has worked during the high holy days at her synagogue’s daycare. Aliya just graduated from San Mateo High School and will be attending San Francisco State University in the fall. At SFSU she will be studying Early Childhood Education. She is very passionate about working with children and is very excited to be apart of the team again this summer!
Born and raised in the San Francisco, Bay Area, Alyssa has always had an interest in helping children learn and grow all while having fun at the same time. During her preschool though middle school years, she developed a love for dance in various styles including: ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary dance, hip hop, and musical theater. During this time, she gained several years of experience working with children and young adults by being a youth group leader and preschool/kindergarten teacher’s assistant through out her high school career. With her bubbly personality and her knowledge from these experiences, Alyssa loves seeing the glowing faces that children have while enjoying an activity or lesson they are participating in.
Aseer is a graduate of San Mateo High School and will be attending CSM in the fall and plans to major in kinesiology He is very excited to be part of the Camp Keff staff this summer. He has played football for SMHS for 3 years and enjoys working with kids and mentoring them.
Aubra graduated from San Mateo high school and will be attending Chico State. She also played basketball and water polo for her high school teams.
Bailey is an incoming freshman attending Saint Mary’s College and studying Kinesiology, with a concentration in Sports Management. Before joining the Camp Keff team, he spent the past couple summers working and volunteering at various summer camps and other organizations. Bailey loves to watch and play all types of sports. In his free time you can find him hanging out with friends, or just staying at home watching Netflix.
Becca has been working at camps for many summers. The PJCC showed me the fun in the Jewish Community along with the Wornick Jewish Day School. Becca is so excited and honored to join the staff at Camp Keff and is ready for an amazing summer.
Brandon Wong is a returning Camp Keff staff member and is very passionate about working with kids and making sure they have the best camp experience possible. Brandon is going into his second year at San Diego State University and is looking forward to another fun summer with all the wonderful campers. Outside of work you can find Brandon working out, playing basketball, walking his dog or hiking.
Brianna is extremely excited to begin her first summer at Camp Keff! She loves working with children and plans to become a pediatric nurse in a few years. In her spare time, Brianna has volunteered at the YMCA, been part of a local hospital’s youth auxiliary, and spent time as a babysitter. Brianna looks forward to watching campers learn and experience new and awesome things this summer. She will be attending California State University, Long Beach in the fall and hopes to bring wonderful Camp Keff memories with her!
Charis is looking forward to returning for her third summer as a counselor at Camp Keff, since she has always enjoyed working with kids. She currently attends the University of Nevada, Reno, majoring in journalism and minoring in theatre. In her free time, she loves singing, blogging, and rock climbing. Charis can’t wait to get another fun-filled summer started at Camp Keff!
This is Eliana’s second summer as a counselor at Camp Keff and she is thrilled to be a part of it. She has been a long-term camper and is excited to create new memories. Eliana is a rising junior at the University of Rochester where she is majoring in biology She loves the outdoors, swimming, singing and traveling. Eliana is looking forward to a fantastic summer. See you at camp!
Hector is returning for his third summer at Camp Keff as the Sports Specialist. He Graduated from San Jose State University with a degree in Kinesiology-Preparation For Teaching. He brings much enthusiasm, creativity, and exciting games to all campers. He has a solid background in education and loves teaching physical activities. He has worked closely with multiple age group students and prepared them for education success. His priority has always been to educate the youth about fitness and nutrition while making the classes fun and exciting. He is very excited to be back for his third summer and cannot wait to start teaching the campers enjoyable and diverting games.
Ingrid is from San Mateo, California and just completed her sophomore year at San Diego State University, majoring in Psychology with a minor in Counseling and Social Change. Ingrid has previous experience working at other summer camps and tutoring elementary school students, so she enjoys working with kids. Ingrid also is a huge Warriors and Giants fan, and loves to travel in her spare time. She is excited to be working as a Camp Keff Counselor for the first time.
This is Israel’s first year as a Camp Counselor at the Peninsula Jewish Community Center and he is super psyched to be working with everyone this summer. He enjoys many activities, which include hanging out with friends and family, playing sports/working out, and playing video games. He especially loves summer camps. Israel is a first generation college-bound student and will be attending Canada College for the next 2 years, hoping to prepare himself to become an Electrical Engineer.
Jared is so excited to be returning to the Camp Keff staff for the second year in a row. Jared was a counselor for the first time last year and was a Junior Counselor before that. However, the PJCC has always been a large part of his life. Jared attended the preschool, went to summer camp every summer since, and spent countless days during his summers at the fitness facility. He loves every moment here and is happy he’s spending his whole summer here before starting as a freshman at Elon University, studying Cinema and Television Arts. Camp Keff means a great deal to him and he is eager to provide campers with the same, amazing experiences he had growing up!
Jessica is new to Camp Keff this year and has just recently move to the Bay area all the way from the windy city of Chicago, IL. She has a love of learning and helping young kids. Jessica has a background in early childhood special education. She graduated from Judson University in 2014 with a Bachlors in Early Childhood Special Ed. She hopes to get settle out here and go back to school to earn her Masters in Social Work. She is very excited to start with camp this year as our Art Specialist.
A proud graduate of Aragon High School, Katie just finished her first year of college as a Psychology major at Marist College in New York. She is also minoring in Music and plans on adding a Religious Studies minor when she returns to school in the fall. Katie has spent the past six summers working with children as a babysitter, a nanny, and as a counselor or volunteer at various camps and summer programs. Her favorite summer treat is frozen yogurt with strawberries and she loves hiking and going to the beach. Katie spends her free time writing articles for the Odyssey, doing various arts and crafts, playing guitar, and taking care of her awesome pet fish.
Krista has been a member of the Camp Keff Team since June 2013 and is excited to join the head staff as One Week Unit Head. She is a rising senior, studying Public Relations and Advertising in Orange County, at Chapman University. Krista traveled to 11 different countries and 15 cities on Semester at Sea in the Spring of 2016. She has a passion of working with children and enjoys making them happy.
Lauren started working as a counselor at Camp Keff in 2006 and is very excited to be back. She holds an MFA in Vocal Performance and a BA in Theater Arts with a musical theater emphasis. In addition to singing and playing guitar, Lauren also plays cello, piano, and ukulele. During the school year, Lauren is on the teaching faculty at Peninsula Temple Beth El. She also teaches private music lessons and performs with many local musical theater companies. In her spare time, she enjoys drinking iced coffee, tap dancing, hanging out with her Goldendoodle puppy, baking chocolate chip cookies, and trying out new restaurants that she discovers on yelp.
Fun Fact: Lauren worked at Disneyland!
Mallory is currently a student at San Diego State University and is pursuing a degree in Liberal Studies to become an elementary school teacher. She has previously been an assistant teacher at a Montessori preschool and also has held many babysitting positions. Mallory enjoys all sports but is especially a fan of the New Orleans Saints! She is very excited to meet all of the campers and to be a camp counselor for the first time!
Marissa will be returning as a counselor for her second year. She has previous experience with kids as a preschool volunteer as well as at other summer camps including Peninsula Day Camp. She will be attending the University of Arizona as a Freshman this fall. Marissa’s favorite part of the summer is bringing campers together to have a fun experience.
Matt has been affiliated with the PJCC Camp program since he was in preschool and decided to give back to the community. He has experience with Jewish teachings and traditions thanks to his high school, Kehillah Jewish High School. Matt studied psychology and studio art at Clark University from where he recently graduated. Outside of camp, Matt makes music with his band and enjoys hiking as well as relaxing on the beach. He is dedicated to guiding children towards gaining new perspectives of the world.
Mitchell has been working in the camp and childcare industry since 2006. Mitchell is a recent grad from Sonoma State University where he studied Sociology. He currently works at the Treehouse after school program here at the PJCC , and is in the process of become an elementary school teacher.
Nicolette has been a part of Team Keff for 4 years now and is now the Kindercamp Unit Head. She has a ton of fun ideas for parties and other activities that she cannot wait to share! Along with working at camp, Nicolette has also worked Treehouse, the PJCC aftercare for more than 3 years now. With her interest in getting her Multi-Subject credential she is ready to take on new challenges and work hard to make sure all campers enjoy their first summer with Keff.
This is Nina’s first summer with Camp Keff. She has 10 year of recreation experience ranging from after school programs to special event planning. Nina spent the past school year working as a PE coach in Redwood City and is certified as a substitute teacher. She graduated from CSU Stanislaus, majoring in Cultural Anthropology. When not working, Nina enjoys taking day trips with family, attending an Earthquakes match, or reading one of the many novels she owns.
Parisa Kabiri is a recent graduate of Aragon High School and is looking forward to starting school at Skidmore College in New York in the upcoming fall. She is beyond excited to be working as a counselor at Camp Keff this summer! She often babysits and absolutely loves being around kids, and tries to do so as much as she can. Parisa has previously worked at the Beresford Recreation Center, where she helped in both aiding children in the dance studio as well as working in the Dance and Fitness Office behind the scenes. She hopes to create lifelong memories for herself and her campers this summer at Camp Keff!
Raisa is excited for her second summer working at Camp Keff. She has recently graduated from San Mateo High School and will be attending Towson University in the fall. She plays water polo, basketball and softball and loves watching Giant’s baseball and Warrior basketball. Raisa loves working with kids and is a mentor to the younger members in her youth group. She is looking forward to another great summer at Camp Keff.
Robby has been with Camp Keff since June 2012, working as a Counselor and Unit Head. This year he will be spending his summer as the Teen Camp Coordinator. During the school year Robby is a teacher in the Treehouse after school program here at the PJCC. Outside of camp, Robby is a Bay Area sports fanatic and enjoys making music.
Savannah is new and incredibly excited to be a part of the Camp Keff team. Currently, she is passionately pursuing a degree in the field of psychology. Savannah has a house full of pets and a long history of working with animals. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, learning, spending time with friends and family, as well as listening to music. Savannah is ecstatic for the summer and cannot wait to teach and learn from the children!”
Scott is currently an accounting student at the University of Nevada, and this will be his third year working at camp. Scott has gone to camp his whole life and loves being able to pass on the experience this next generation of young campers.
Sharon joined the PJCC team in April of 2016 as a Teacher’s Aide at Treehouse. Sharon is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in Music Performance at San Francisco State University. She enjoys writing and playing music. Prior to her time at the PJCC, Sharon taught Piano, Drum, and Guitar lessons at School of Rock in San Mateo. In her free time she enjoys cooking and playing with her dog, Remi.
Sheeva is a college student majoring in Business Administration. Her background includes working in non-profit organizations associated with children and feels immensely satisfied when she sees smiles on their faces. She is a kind, generous and compassionate individual who loves Disney. She enjoys dancing and is a major book buff.
Tali is excited to be starting her first summer at Camp Keff. Previously she has worked for Camp Galileo and as a Sunday School teacher. She has a degree in archaeology from the University of Montana. Tali is looking forward to spreading her love of Jewish culture to children this summer.
This will be Theresa’s third year working at Camp Keff. She is a junior at Menlo college and is majoring in accounting. She is a part of the Menlo college competition cheer team as well. In her free time she loves to go to the beach, listen to music, and play with her dog. Theresa loves the Keff family and is so excited for the upcoming summer.
Valerie joined the Camp Keff team in May 2016. Her experience as a volleyball coach and everyday child sitter has prepared her very well for Camp Keff’s team. Just graduating from San Mateo High School, Valerie is eager for this new opportunity and experience to prepare her for college and the work force. Being a huge fan of the beach, you will always find her during her spare time in Pacifica or Half Moon Bay.
Vicky is a recent graduate from Aragon High School, and she will be attending UC San Diego in the fall as a human biology/pre-med major. Once she graduates from college, she has plans to attend medical school and become a surgeon. Vicky has worked as a children’s tutor, a babysitter, and a children’s karate instructor, and she is very excited to continue working with kids this summer as a counselor at Camp Keff. In her free time, she enjoys drawing and painting, reading, and jogging around Foster City.
Victoria has been teaching science and outdoor education since graduating from Humboldt State University in 2013. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in both Biology and Zoology and has a passion for science, stewardship, and teaching. Outside of work you can find Victoria under water, SCUBA diving through the kelp forests.
Preschool Seasonal Staff
Bryan finished his freshman year of college at Chapman University. He is very excited to be working at Camp Keff this summer! Bryan was born and raised in Foster City and has been a member at the PJCC for about 6 years now. He loves to play basketball, hike, travel, and work with kids!
Cody is a junior in college studying psychology. He has been going to summer camp his whole life, and he can’t wait to make this summer as exciting for his campers as he remembers it being when he was a camper.
Colette enjoys reading, writing, and making art in her free time. Working with children is a passion of hers, and she has been working with them for a couple of years. First at the Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School, and now with Camp Keff. She is so excited for all of the fun that this season has in store, and looks forward to getting to know each and every one of you.
Daniel Finnie attends Saint Mary’s College of California in Moraga and plans to study business. He just recently came back from a year abroad in Israel. He spent a year volunteering, learning Hebrew, and immersing himself in Israeli society. Daniel enjoys playing a variey of instruments including the guitar, the drums, and occasionally the piano. He loves to play soccer and exercise often. He is really excited for this summer’s camp!
Danielle is an Elementary Education major and ASL minor at Boise State University. This next fall she will be a Resident Assistant at Boise State. She loves working with children and is excited to work her first summer at Camp Keff.
Joelle just finished her second year at UC Berkeley. She enjoys horseback riding, playing the saxophone, and any kind of exercise. On the weekends she hikes, plays tennis, enjoys swimming, and watching Scandal with her sister. Joelle hopes to someday become a professor, but for now she is just looking forward to working at Camp Keff this summer!”
Kevin is a Bay Area native who grew up in San Mateo and currently lives in Foster City. Kevin is a junior at Sonoma State University and is majoring in Early Childhood Studies! He loves to go on outdoor adventures such as hikes and camping. Kevin also loves to be active and healthy by working out everyday. Playing sports is one of his favorite things to do and he is a big fan of the San Francisco Giants! If he’s not outside being active then you might find him in an art studio because he also has a passion for pottery and ceramics! This is Kevin’s first summer at Camp Keff and he is extremely excited to be a part of the preschool program this year!
Kevin is going to be a sophomore at the University of Southern California studying business administration. He has been involved in acting, sports, and community service throughout his life. He’s looking forward to working within the Jewish community this summer.
Morgan is a cheerleader for her school and enjoys being with her friends and family. She is passionate about working with kids and giving them an opportunity learn while having fun.
Quin loves working with kids and she is a cheerleader and dancer. She also loves to have fun and hangout with his family and friends! She is really excited for this summer and ready to have a blast with all the campers.
Riannon is very excited to be working at Camp Keff this summer. On her off-time she enjoys theater and directing plays, competitive archery, violin, dancing, painting, and drawing.
“Compassion. Motivation. Integrity. Giggles. These are the staples by which Sarah wishes to create a fun, educational, and happy camp environment at Camp Keff! After having worked closely with kids at Peninsula Temple Beth El throughout her high school years, Sarah is more than excited to create a wonderful community at the PJCC this summer. As an active and enthusiastic participant in her college marching band, improv team, and choir, she is eager to create community wherever her passions take her!”
Sarah is super excited to be joining the Camp Keff Team this summer! She is a Lead Counselor here at Camp Keff and will also be leading the Awesome Athletes! Sarah attended camp throughout her childhood, and is ready to lead new campers to play, learn, and have fun! Sarah graduated as a scholarship student-athlete from San Jose State University, and enjoys playing sports, reading, arts and crafts, and being outside in the sun!
Sharon has been with the PJCC for almost 28 years, 18 in the office and 10 in the classroom. She has loved working in the classroom and getting to know all of the children. She says she has the best job in the world, playing with children!
Susan enjoys working with children and has been with the PJCC for five years. She has a B.A. in Education and an M.A. in Theater Arts. Susan has also worked for Unicef, College for Kids and have volunteered for Art in Action.
The joy of seeing a child learn while playing is very rewarding.