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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.

Brooke Pertnoy Early Childhood Director Palm Beach Gardens

Brooke Pertnoy
Early Childhood Director
Palm Beach Gardens

Director of the Barbara & Jack Kay Early Childhood Learning Center, Brooke Pertnoy has dedicated her career to early childhood learning. She began her career at the JCC as an early childhood educator. In this role, she made sure that the needs of children with various developmental abilities were met, collaborated with parents, teachers to develop learning opportunities. Eventually, she went on to become Operations Coordinator, and then Director.

Pertnoy is currently a part of the prestigious Jewish Community Center Association of North America’s Sheva Center Leadership Institute for Early Childhood Professionals. This national leadership development institute is a three-year program that enhances the skills of exceptional early childhood staff interested in increased responsibilities and leadership roles in early care and education. The Mandel JCC is one of five programs in the country part of the JCCA’s Sheva Center Lab communities — which is a school that models excellence in early childhood education for other JCCs. She is also a graduate of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County’s Emergent Leadership Program.

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!

Mariah Starnes-Martell Teens & Tweens Program Coordinator Palm Beach Gardens

Mariah Starnes-Martell
Teens & Tweens Program Coordinator
Palm Beach Gardens

Mariah is the new Teens & Tweens Program Coordinator at the Palm Beach Gardens JCC starting in November 2021; working with camp, afterschool, and the teen programs. Before joining the JCC, she was a teacher in the School District of Palm Beach County and worked as a counselor at South Florida Leadership Training Camp for multiple summers. Mariah attended USF where she got her Bachelors of Arts in Political Science and then went on to get a Masters of Science in Curriculum, Instruction, & Technology from Nova Southeastern University. Mariah is super excited to be working with the JNightZ camps and cannot wait for summer!