All About... Who?
The Tanamakoon Charitable Foundation
Camp Maple Leaf is operated by the Camp Tanamakoon Charitable Foundation - Registration #870125150RR0001. Founded by Kim and Marilyn Smith, It was incorporated and received its charitable status in 1999. Collectively, the Smiths have been involved in camping and education for over 80 years, most notably as the owners and directors of Camp Tanamakoon, a traditional summer camp for girls. From its beginning the Foundation has been donating to small women’s and children’s charities. Since 2015, The Tanamakoon Charitable Foundation now carries out its mission by directly supporting Camp Maple Leaf.
The Camp Team
Kim Smith, Executive Director
Kim Smith, along with his wife Marilyn have been the owners and directors of Camp Tanamakoon since 1984. They are parents of two children, a daughter, Laura and a son, Jerrod.
Kim has been involved in camping for more than 50 years. He was a camper, counsellor and senior staff member at a boys’ camp for 10 years. Kim was associated with and worked at a co-educational camp for 10 summers as a senior staff member and canoe trip guide. He was an Algonquin Park Ranger for The Friends of Algonquin Park. Kim practised law for more than twenty years, but left private practice to devote himself full time to camp. Now, through the Camp Tanamakoon Charitable Foundation which he and his family founded, he is thrilled to pass on his love of camp to the campers of Camp Maple Leaf.
Marilyn Smith: Founder-Camp Tanamakoon Charitable Foundation
Marilyn Smith has a teaching background stretching back 30 years. She has a degree in Family Studies and is a qualified specialist in both guidance and special education. Marilyn has now retired from teaching and spends her summers in Algonquin. Kim and Marilyn own and operate Bartlett Lodge on Cache Lake and The Pines Cottage Resort in Dwight.
April Young, Camp Director
April Young grew up at camp from the age of 8. At 16, she realized that being a Camp Director for Children with unique challenges was her calling.
April received her Master of Education along with a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in Therapeutic Recreation and Special Education. Since 1988, April has held many camp positions, from Counsellor to Director of Fun! April directed two camps for children with cancer and a camp for children of all abilities. She was also on the teams that founded a camp for burn survivors and a camp for children with congenital heart disease. April is committed to safety at camp and has shared this passion with other camps through volunteering with the Ontario Camps Association, as a past Chairman of their Standards Committee. April and her husband Shawn have two campers of their own, Joey and Lily. It is April’s dream come true to be part of the island magic of Camp Maple Leaf!
Jay Hooper, Director, Funds Development
Jay started out as a camp counsellor, next as a section director and then as a camp director for the YMCA in its camps, gradually shifting into children's and youth programs, community development work and eventually fundraising. After 17 years with the Y, Jay's career moved to focus entirely on fundraising, working with Development teams at the CNIB, the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, Plan International, the Canadian Diabetes Association and WWF Canada. "There is nothing more satisfying than being back at Camp" Jay says as he joins the Camp Maple Leaf team.
Jerrod Smith, Director of Operations
Jerrod Smith has a Bachelors Degree in Recreation Management and a Masters Degree in Sports Management. He is currently an Assistant Coach with the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League. He has been Director of Recreation Programs for Woods Homes Schools in Alberta and was a staff member at Hockey Opportunity Camp for many years. Jerrod and his wife Candice will be on-site at Camp providing leadership in all areas of Camp Maple Leaf.
Karen Gris – Business Manager
Karen Gris Karen is the Business Manager of Camp Tanamakoon. She has worked with Kim Smith for over 35 years, first as his legal secretary and for the past 30 years as Business Manager for the Camp. She works year round in our Oakville business office.
Patti Thom: Camp Advisor
Patti Thom has been associated with Tanamakoon as a camper, CIT, counselor and senior Staff member since 1964. Her energy, passion and enthusiasm for camp and people of all ages make her an ideal full time Camp Director for Tanamakoon. Patti is a former Phys Ed teacher and Outdoor Recreation Specialist. She has served on the Boards of the The Society of Camp Directors, The Ontario Camps Association and the Canadian Camping Association. Patti has received numerous awards for her volunteer efforts in camping with the highest of these being the Dorothy Walter Award. Patti is an Honorary Life Member of the Ontario Camps Association. Patti is proud to be one of the Founding Members of The Kids In Camp Charity and currently serves on their Board of Directors.
Mark Freeman, Site and Facilities Director
Mark has spent many summers as a camper with his family as his father was a director of camps in the Omemee and Brantford areas.
Camping became a regular summer event after he married with his wife and 2 children. At age 19 entered into construction completing his certification in carpentry in 1989. He has spent the last 36 years enjoying his work and started his own renovation business in 2000.
Mark became involved with Camp Maple Leaf in 2011 heading up the maintenance of the island.
Mark is certified in the operations of the camps water treatment system as well as certified to operate the vessels used in the transportation of the children, supplies and equipment for the daily operations of the camp. Hearing the excitement of the campers from arrival to departure is a very satisfying experience that keeps you young at heart.
Marks military background starts with his grandfather who was at Vimy Ridge during WW1.
His grandfather was a member of the Canadian Council of War Veterans Association that founded Camp Maple Leaf back in 1955. Mark has 2 uncles retired from the Air Force and a cousin who is still currently serving out of Ottawa.
His son Michael enlisted in the Canadian Forces in 2005; he was stationed at CFB Petawawa and was deployed to Afghanistan in September 2008.
Camp Maple Leaf has become very much a part of Marks life when it comes to helping those who served and are currently serving.
Michelle Robinson: Registrar
Michelle is a military wife and mom to a 14 year old daughter. She has finally mastered the "Military Move" (8 so far...) and understands the unique challenges that come with the Military Lifestyle. She has a background in Accounting and Bookkeeping and worked at the PMFRC from 2011 to 2014. She is happy to answer any of your registration questions and can also help navigate the application process for the Support our Troops Summer Camp Grants.