Summer and vacation camps 
for kids and teens, located in Waltham, MA

Our Leadership

Jim Bellanca, M.A., LMHC
Director of Summer & Auxiliary Programs, Chapel Hill - Chauncy Hall School Director, Running Brook Day Camp

I am proud to share that summer 2017 will be my 22nd summer working at Running Brook Day Camp, my eighteenth summer as the program Director and my seventh as the Director of Summer Programs for Chapel Hill - Chauncy Hall School. I am very excited about the continued growth of our camp programs.

As a licensed Mental Health Counselor, I have spent the majority of my post-grad school work in various elementary and middle schools, both public as well as private therapeutic settings. I also spent fifteen years as a part-time clinician at The Academy of Physical and Social Development in Newton, where kids play actively in small groups as they work to build their social and physical skills, as well as their self-esteem. Throughout that time, I have spent my summers working at Running Brook, where I was continuously reminded of the incredible importance of a structured, fun, nurturing environment for kids of all ages during the summer months. There is so much growth that can happen for kids in a relatively short time at camp in the summer; taking on new physical challenges and trying new activities, enhancing social skills and making new friends, growing in self-confidence and feeling a part of a larger, close-knit community. It is no coincidence that nearly all of my professional time is now spent with Running Brook Camps - a place where every member of our community spends the summer laughing, playing, learning and growing together. I am very fortunate to have found a career working in such a great place.

Outside of camp, I still spend as much time as possible outdoors with my wife, young daughter and our dogs. Much of that time is spent on a snowboard, in a pair of snowshoes, in a kayak or on a hiking trail in Vermont, our “home away from home.” I’m looking forward to another great summer at camp.

“Kids love this camp, especially the swimming, high ropes, karate and yoga. But the biggest factor is the spectacular counselors”

Laura - Mother of 1st grade boy and 4th grade girl

Alex Guard, M.A. 
Assistant Director of Summer & Auxiliary Programs, Chapel Hill - Chauncy Hall School
 
Once a camp kid, always a camp kid! From a very young age I spent my summers at camp. I was fortunate enough to have varying experiences from soccer, horseback riding, gymnastics, 4-H, drama, and sleep-away camps. Each camp gave me fresh experiences and the knowledge that I could build relationships with new people. I still remember the feeling of going back to school in the fall and being so excited to share my memories with my classmates. My diverse camp experiences gave me a greater sense of self confidence and independence, and as I grew older I continued to seek out opportunities to try new things and meet new people.  
I believe that my interest in leadership as well as my passion for helping kids develop healthy social-emotional skills was largely shaped by my early camp experiences.
While I was enrolled at Lesley University, receiving a Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, I discovered Running Brook Day Camp and instantly knew that I had found a very special place. After graduation in 2007, I started the rewarding work as a Clinician providing support to children and families within school, residential and in-home settings. When I could, I strategically took jobs that would allow me to return to RBDC in the summer and I always joked that someday I would work at camp year-round.
 
As fate would have it, I have spent the past 4 years working in the camp office full time as the Assistant Director of Summer and Auxiliary Programs at CH-CH.  I continue to love coming to work every day where the goal is to create a nurturing environment where staff and  kids alike can learn, be silly, make friends, step out of their comfort zone, unplug and most importantly - play!
 
The fun doesn’t stop for me when I leave camp, I go home to a goofy and inquisitive toddler, a loyal german shepherd who loves to fetch, a tigress trapped in a house-cat’s body and a husband who enjoys seeking out fun as much as I do.  
 I can’t wait to see you at camp!
 
Kenna Thurston, M.A., LMFT
Assistant Director

I am excited to be a part of the Running Brook community for my fourth summer! Camp is the time of year I get to enjoy the outdoors, engage in group activities and help campers with personal and social growth. My passion is working with campers to feel comfortable and excited to be at camp despite any social or emotional challenges they endure, along with mentoring counselors to feel confident and prepared to assist with social and emotional challenges as well. Prior to this fabulous job of dressing up like Cool Runnings or getting pied in the face, I received my Bachelor's of Science in Human Development and Family Studies, and then received my Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy. During the school year I work in private practice as a life coach for children, adolescents and adults. Additionally, I work at the FUSE school as a kindergarten teacher. My favorite part of the year is the summer time due to the warm sun, refreshing swimming pools, popsicle Tuesdays and dance party Fridays!
Neil Hagan, M.A.
Assistant Director

I am thrilled to be returning to Running Brook for my second summer! I had a fantastic time as the LTP Director last year where I got to work with an exceptional group of LTP’s, helping them develop and grow their leadership skills in the process. This summer I am excited to take on the role of Assistant Director where I will have the opportunity to help support staff and campers alike in as many ways as I can.  Although I grew up in California, I’ve also lived in Mississippi, Massachusetts, New Zealand, Italy, and Malaysia. I have many hobbies but my favorites are probably to run, travel, play golf, finish top five in team trivia, and scuba dive. That being said, my true passion and calling in life is to support and foster the emotional and social well-being of children and adolescents. After getting my Bachelor’s degree at Boston College in 2012, I became a high school math teacher, tutor, mentor, and baseball coach. After two years of teaching I decided to pursue a career in counseling and graduated from BC in 2016 with my Masters in Mental Health Counseling. In addition to my summer positon at RBDC, I lead several long-term play therapy groups at the Academy of Physical and Social Development and I provide in-home addiction counseling for adolescents and their families as a Team Fourteen clinician with Lahey Health Behavioral Services. These various roles all allow me to use my clinical skills and passion to help children and adolescents live happy, healthy lives. I’m excited to do the same this summer at camp!
Tammy H. Graham, M.A., LMFT
Assistant Director
 
I am excited to return for my sixth year as an Assistant Director at Running Brook. I truly feel blessed to work at such a spectacular camp with so many enthusiastic and talented people. During the school year, I work in private practice as a Child, Adolescent and Family Therapist in Arlington. I specialize in working with children with behavioral challenges, learning disabilities, and mental health issues. In the past, I have worked in schools, providing individual counseling and classroom education on conflict resolution, friendship skills, social skills, and bullying. My goal is to help every child I encounter feel better about themselves. If I can do that in a day’s work, then I know I am helping make this world a better place. I am looking forward to another fantastic summer at Running Brook!

I have two children who attend our day camp and adventures camp. In my spare time I enjoy running, sailing and spending time with my family.
Jonathan Rabinowitz
LTP - 2 Program Director

In 7th grade I remember being asked to choose a poem, memorize it, and then recite it to the class.  I ended up choosing Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken."  Just like that, a burdensome assignment inspired a lifetime vision: Trying to always choose the road a bit less traveled by.  Whether it be going to McGill University in Montreal, riding my bike across the U.S., or jumping into a teaching career through "Teach for America"  (Baltimore), I have tried to follow a unique road inspired by interest and helping others. Admittedly,  I took a slight detour through the business world at one point, but a passion for teaching, coaching, and learning (not to mention enjoying the summer) brought me back to the classroom 15 years ago and counting.

I currently spend my days as a 6th grade social studies teacher in Wellesley and remain as excited to come to work every day as I was on my first day as a teacher in Baltimore when an officer pulled me over on my way to school for, let's say, trying to get to school a bit too fast.  I have had the privilege to work with thousands of students and know that learning is infinite in its forms. My vision of meaningful learning has grown greatly--the great outdoors, social engagement, and simple play all offer incredibly valuable realms for kids to grow physically and emotionally and thus I am very happy to be joining the staff at Running Brook. 
I feel confident that my experiences as a teacher, coach, and avid traveler help create natural connections with kids and adults alike. I believe in the values of grit and resiliency and that you earn grades rather than "getting" them. I hope to continue learning through my position as the 2nd year LTP Director, helping to develop new young leaders and spark lasting friendships. 

My cheering section at home includes a veterinarian wife, a variety of 0, 2, and 4-legged pets, and two over-energized and loving boys, ages 3 and 5. By the time camp starts, there should be one more little one joining the fray--stay tuned!
Sara Berkowitz, LICSW
Director, Running Brook Adventures

I’ve always said my dream job is to be a professional camp counselor.  After nine years of attending day camp, 4 years of overnight camp, 4 years as an overnight camp counselor, 2 years as head of sports and a ropes course at an overnight camp, and 8 years as an Adventures counselor at Running Brook, I am ready and thrilled to take on the role of Adventures Director!  I love supporting kids in stepping outside of their comfort zones, recognizing their own strengths and building connections with others. Through hiking, biking, kayaking, rock climbing and camping, Running Brook Adventures provides the perfect opportunity for this growth and I am beyond excited to be part of it.

During the school year, I am an in-home therapist at Wayside Youth & Family Support Network where I provide support and counseling to youth and their families.  I am also the Coordinator of Jewish Family & Children’s Service’s TeenSafe Program, where I run groups designed to teach teens to identify healthy and unhealthy behaviors in relationships and also to help them become mentors for their peers. I have many years of experience working with youth in schools, afterschool programs and camp settings, and I am passionate about empowering youth to make change in their community.
In my free time, I love to travel, take pictures, play softball and spend time with friends and family. I love being outdoors, and am excited for this summer and all the new adventures to come! 
Denise Goguen
Camp Manager

I am excited to share that this is my 22nd year with Running Brook! When I started out, I was doing the accounting work for camp behind the scenes. A few years into it, I began managing the camp office year-round. For the past six years I have been both the camp Office Manager as well as the Accounts Receivable Manager for Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School. I have very much enjoyed being directly involved with the campers, parents and staff each summer and throughout the year. It is great seeing the kids summer after summer, watching them grow-up and getting to know so many of their families.


"I have had very positive interactions with all of the camp administration- they do a wonderful job."

"They make the camp feel very personal and welcoming despite the scale.  Couldn't be more impressed with camp administration."

RUNNING BROOK CAMPS AT CHAPEL HILL - CHAUNCY HALL SCHOOL


785 Beaver St.
Waltham, MA 02452
Phone: 781-314-0994
Fax: 781-894-5706
Email: runningbrookcamp@chch.org

Director: Jim Bellanca, L.M.H.C.

Office Hours: We are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.. Please give us a call with any questions that you have, or to schedule a personal tour.