Meet the Camp Directors

The staff at Camp Shalom is the best around! There's no question that there is a direct correlation between the quality of our staff and the quality of the experience for the campers. Each staff member is highly screened by the Camp Director and must pass a background check prior to being hired. All staff members go through a week long intensive staff orientation, weekly staff meetings and staff evaluations throughout the summer. All senior counselors, unit heads, and specialists are professionals who have the experience and maturity to make camp fun while keeping Camp Shalom both emotionally and physically safe.

Rachel Fox Camp Shalom Director Palm Beach Gardens

Rachel Fox
Camp Shalom Director
Palm Beach Gardens

Rachel Fox has been working for the Mandel JCC since March of 2008 as the Program and Camp Shalom Director for West Palm Beach and then Palm Beach Gardens. In 2011 Fox became the Program and Camp Shalom Director for the agency and in 2013 Fox was the Assistant Executive Director in Palm Beach Gardens and now is the Program and Camp Shalom Director in Palm Beach Gardens. In 2010 Fox was named Staff Member of the Year. She attended the JCC Association’s TAG: (Torah, Avodah, Gemilut Chasadim) Jewish Values through JCC Camping in years 2008 and 2009. Fox was also selected as one of 12 camp directors to participate in Israel Up Close through the JCC Association in 2018.

From 2001-2008 Fox served as the Children’s Program Specialist and then the Children, Youth and Camping Director at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus. As the Children, Youth and Camping Director Fox supervised 700 campers each summer in 6 different day camps. Throughout her tenure at the Columbus JCC, Fox was part of the Association of Jewish Center Professionals (AJCP), and received the Central Region Creative Programmer Award in 2006 and the Rabbi Nathan and Sylvia Gaynor Jewish Cultural Award in 2007. In 2007 Fox received the JCC Association Keeping it Cool, Keeping it Kosher TAG grant and attended the TAG trainings in the years 2005, 2006 and 2007.

In 2005 Fox was selected as one of 18 JCC Day Camp Directors to participate in the first (and only) cohort of the Lekhu Lakhem Program facilitated by the Mandel Center for Jewish Education at the JCC Association. This 2.5 year program taught Fox how to strengthen the day camp programming and how to put a broader Jewish lens on all aspects of camp.

Fox earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies at Indiana University. She spent a semester studying Jewish Education at Tel Aviv University and was selected as a Jewish Education Service of North America (JESNA) intern in 2000.

Emily and Ethan, Rachel’s twins, will be campers in Upper Camp this summer. Rachel loves watching them get so excited about camp — just like every other Camp Shalom camper.

Jessica Friedman Yeladim Camp Director Palm Beach Gardens

Jessica Friedman
Yeladim Camp Director
Palm Beach Gardens

Assistant Director of the Barbara & Jack Kay Early Childhood Learning Center. Jessica has spent her career in Jewish education, beginning at a JCC in Northern NJ, where she started as a classroom room teacher, moving into a leadership role and then becoming the early childhood director of a temple nursery school. Jessica moved from NJ with her family and knew she wanted to root herself back at a JCC, meeting the needs of the diverse community and partnering with likeminded people.

Jessica has an absolute passion for early childhood education. She believes strongly in cultivating collaborative relationships with teachers and families, building trust and partnerships, both imperative to maintaining a successful school. Her philosophy of early childhood education is built on the belief that by nurturing high quality educational experiences for young children, validated on best practices in emerging curricula, we foster lifelong learners and innovative thinkers. She believes that children learn best through hand on experiences and when they are invested in their work. Jessica studied Early Childhood Education as an undergraduate and holds a Bachelor's Degree from Ramapo College. She holds a National Director Credential from the McCormick Center for Early Childhood Education.

John Kabot Special Needs Director Palm Beach Gardens

John Kabot
Special Needs Director
Palm Beach Gardens

John Kabot is the Director of Special Needs for the Mandel JCC. Before joining the JCC family, he oversaw the Broward County Public Schools Preschool department. John also served is the Director of Education for The Victory Center which provided services to children from 3-22 years old. He started his career at the Baudhuin Preschool of Nova Southeastern University where he served as a teacher, Board Certified Behavior Analyst, and administrator. John has a forty year-old brother on the autism spectrum which is his driving passion in the field.

Summer Sweetall Assistant Camp Director Palm Beach Gardens

Summer Sweetall
Assistant Camp Director
Palm Beach Gardens

Summer has been with the Palm Beach Gardens JCC since October of 2018; working with camp, afterschool, and the family programs. Before heading to PBG, she was a camper, CIT, counselor, and unit head for the Boynton Beach JCC. Summer attended FAU and earned degrees in Criminal Justice and Sociology and is now attending UCF for a Master’s in Nonprofit Management. Everything about camp excites summer, but her favorite part of camp is the amazing friends that come back year after year!

Isaiah Nelson Sports Director Palm Beach Gardens

Isaiah Nelson
Sports Director
Palm Beach Gardens

Isaiah is the new sports director at the JCC. Before joining the team Isaiah played Division 1 football at Eastern Illinois University and earned a degree in Sports Management. After finishing his career at EIU Isaiah had short professional football stints with the Arena Football League as well as the Spring League. After finishing his playing career Isaiah began serving as the wide receivers coach at the Benjamin school here in Palm Beach Gardens. A long with coaching Isaiah started his own personal training program catered specifically for young athletes. Isaiah is extremely excited to be working with Camp Shalom and looks forward to the opportunity to use sports as way to impact the kids lives in a positive way!

2022 Camp Partners