Meet Our Team

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John H. Collins Sr,
Executive Director

The Badger Swim program is led by world recognized swim coach John Collins Jr. For the past 30 years John Collins has created a world class swim program in Westchester, New York. During that time John has coached 5 world champions, multiple NCAA champions and Olympic atheletes, including Westchester’s Olympic gold medalist Rick Carey. Himself a former Badger swimmer, Indiana University All American butterflier and American Record holder in the 200 Butterfly. John is currently a member of the United States National Team coaching staff.

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John Collins III,
Director

John Collins III is third generation Badger Director who attended camp since he was a tot, moving up the ranks to counselor, lifeguard and assistant director, learning first hand the in and outs of Badger Sports Club, before going on to become the Head Director as he is today. Having been exposed to so many sports at Badger throughout his life, John was not surprisingly an athlete and while attending the University of Hartford John played for the NCAA Division 1 golf team and went on to become a PGA Pro before coming back to become the Camp director, a position he has held for the past 10 years. John can be found working on site 12 months a year preparing for the upcoming camp season. John makes himself readily available to parents for tours throughout the year so parents always get the personal attention that Badger is known for, ensuring the grounds are in top shape for the season, making sure vendors are in place, preparing staff and the overall every day attention it takes to guarantee a smooth and exciting summer experience!

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Patty Kinnick,
Assistant Director

Patty Kinnick has made Badger her summer home for well over 30 years. She is a former Badger camper who loved it enough to stay on each summer in a variety of roles. She was a Badger counselor until college and then moved on to be a group leader, art instructor for young campers and finally a Head Counselor before moving on to manage the day to day operations of the camp. Patty is a graduate of the College of New Rochelle and also holds a masters degree from New York University School of Education. She is a NYS certified elementary school teacher as well as a certified special education teacher. After 25 years in the classroom, Patty currently directs a vocational education program and community work program at Rockland County BOCES for students with disabilities.

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Ali Lupiano-Nocar,
Assistant Director

Ali spent many of her childhood summers as a Badger camper.  She then returned to work for the summer throughout high school and college as an assistant counselor and eventually as a head counselor for the pre-school groups.  She holds a BA from Syracuse University and a Certificate in Human Resource Management from Adelphi University.  After spending the majority of her career as an HR Manager, Ali returned to Badger as a head counselor for our pre-school groups in 2010. In 2012, she joined Patty and Pam’s team and works with them to plan summers at camp.  Ali also works in the camp office throughout the year. She has three sons who have all spent their summers at Badger since they were three years old.

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Theresa Baer,
Athletic Director

Theresa Baer holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education and a Master degree in Education from Manhattan College. She teaches science and physical education at M.S. 180 in the Bronx during the school year. Her summers have been spent at Badger since 1991, teaching gymnastics and, more recently, working as the athletic director. Her two grown children spent 11 summers as campers and have the fondest memories of their time at Badger.

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Aaron Montgomery,
Pool Director

Coach Aaron Montgomery spent his swimming years split between the Eastern Queens and Flushing YMCAs. Knee surgery in his freshman year and the termination of the University at Albany swim team ended his career prematurely; it also informally began his coaching career. After finishing his BA in English and MA in Education, Aaron returned to the Flushing YMCA to begin his coaching career in 1994 where he coached their 11 & 12 program age group program. After moving to Mamaroneck in 2002, he has worked with the Rye YMCA, Rye Golf Club and Larchmont Shore Club. After being asked to coach the Mamaroneck HS swim team, Aaron and John met in 2004, and Aaron has considered John Collins an invaluable mentor since then. He joined the Badger coaching staff in 2008.

Nikki Martelli, Division Leader,
Pre-School Division: Crickets

Nikki Martelli is a certified Speech-language Pathologist, who combines almost 20 years of NYC and Westchester County Education experience.  Her expertise includes articulation, language and learning disabilities.  Nikki’s is a self-motivator, diligent worker, highly professional, and extremely attentive to her students/clients needs. She will be returning for a second year at Badger and she and her two young children are looking forward to another wonderful summer.

Kristi Bloom, Division Leader,
Pre-School Division: Stars

Kristi Bloom is a Larchmont native and holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Manhattan College.  She has over fifteen years of human resources and corporate recruitment experience. Kristi’s area of HR expertise focused on the Financial Industry’s Front Office Sales, Trading and Research.   Currently, she is an active volunteer in the community and local grammar school, while raising three young children.  Kristi possesses a strong work ethic, attention to detail, and is conscientious, dependable, and compassionate.

Sabrina Zavaglia, Division Leader,
Pre-School Division: Puffins

Sabrina Zavaglia is in her 11th year of teaching Biology at Pelham Memorial HS. Before moving to Westchester, she worked as a NYC high school Biology teacher at the High School of Fashion Industries. She obtained her Master’s in Education for Biology at St. John’s University and then most recently went on to complete her degree in secondary school administration. During her time in education, she has investigated learning strategies and researched cognitive brain activity to create links that can help make students more successful in her classroom. She is excited to bring her passion to young campers at Badger and become part of the Badger team.

Shona Gualtieri, Division Leader,
Pre-School Division: Beetles

Shona Gualtieri has been a Pre-kindergarten teacher for twenty years and has been teaching for a total of twenty-three years. She has a master’s degree in Early Childhood Education and is currently pursuing a second masters in Early Childhood Administration which she will complete this May. Shona is a Universal Pre-K teacher for the NYC Board of Education and currently works in the Bronx. This will be her fourth year working at Badger camp and her second year as Head Counselor of the four-year-old group.

Denise M. Stella, Division Leader,
Division I Girls: Grades K, 1 & 2

Denise Stella has been a FACS teacher at Albert Leonard Middle School in New Rochelle for seven years. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree as well as her Master of Science in Education degree from Queens College, CUNY. Denise is also a NYS certified elementary school teacher. This will be her third summer at Badger. In previous years, Denise has been the head counselor of one of our pre-school groups, the Puffins. Growing up in the city, she looks at the grounds of Badger as an oasis, she loves Badger and plans on being part of the family for many years to come. Denise is the proud mom of a 4-year-old son who attends camp as well as the Badger Swim School.

Judith Keneally, Division Leader,
Division II Girls: Grades 3, 4, 5 & 6

Judith Keneally holds a BA from Boston College and a Masters of Education from Fordham University.  She has been teaching for 20 years and her experiences include teaching various grades in elementary schools in the Bronx, as well as being a Math coach and providing AIS services.  She is currently a seventh grade teacher at Hommocks Middle School where she enjoys teaching math.  Judith has worked at various camps at different points in her life and is looking forward to being part of the Badger family.

Alison Ivler, Division Leader,
Division I Boys: Grades K & 1

Alison is a graduate of Binghamton University and holds a Master of Science in Elementary Education from Hunter College.   She started teaching at an elementary school in New York City and currently teaches third and fourth grade in the Mamaroneck School District.  Alison has been a head counselor at Badger since 2011 and is excited about her new role as division leader.  Alison had her first camp experience when she was 5 in Upstate NY.  She loved day camp and went to summer camps every year through college.  On her free time, Alison enjoys running outdoors and spending time with her family.  She has two boys who have attended Badger since they were five years old.  Alison loves seeing her boys around camp and sharing in all the wonderful activities Badger has to offer.

Jay Ceballos, Division Leader,
Division II Boys: Grades 2 & 3

Jay Ceballos has spent many summers working in various day camps and sleep away camps.  Since moving with his family from NYC to Larchmont, he has worked at Badger for 9 years.  Jay has been the Head Counselor for the youngest boys groups.  He enjoys the outdoors as well as swimming.  In 2012, Jay was asked to join the Badger Swim School staff.  He instructs the Pre-Team and Developmental groups.  It has been a great and rewarding experience and he looks forward to continuing to instruct and lead younger campers and swimmers.  Jay is a Teaching Assistant for Middle School Physical Education and also coaches girls soccer.  His two children have also attended Badger and are now part of the Badger staff.  They all have amazing, exciting and challenging memories of Badger.

Jason Krasner, Division Leader,
Division III Boys: Grades 4, 5 & 6

Jason Krasner holds a BA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Masters Degrees in both Middle School Education and Supervisory Administration from Adelphi College and Touro City College, respectively.  He started his teaching career with the New York City Board of Education in 1997.  He is currently working at Isaac E. Young Middle School in New Rochelle where he has taught English, Reading and Social Studies for the past nine years.  A lifelong camper, Jason grew up attending day camp and sleep away camps on Long Island and upstate New York.  He started working at Badger in 2010 as a head Counselor and is excited to be returning in 2014 as a Division Leader.  He has two young boys who love spending their summers as Badger.  Jason always looks forward to his summers at Badger and hopes to spend many more years working with our team.

Our Happy Campers

I have only the fondest of memories of my years as Badger camper!  I also had the pleasure of working as a counselor for many summers as well. And, when the time came for my children to go to camp, there was no question where they would go! The personal, caring touch of the Collins family is felt in every aspect of the camp.  The balance of sports and non-sports activities combined with the stellar swim program makes for the perfect summer. Badger will always hold a special place in our family’s hearts!

Ali Nocar