summer camps for kids and teens in Vermont

Our Directors & Staff


Bill and Kathy Neilsen DirectorsOur Directors


William and Katharine Neilsen have been the full-time, year-round directors of Brown Ledge since 1983.  They share a long association with, and enthusiastic commitment to Brown Ledge.


Kathy was a Brown Ledge camper, junior counselor, and then counselor, working as the head of waterskiing during the early to mid-1970s.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and Master of Education-Counseling from the University of Vermont.  For the past thirty years she has been a school counselor working with students aged 5 to 18 in Vermont and New Mexico. Kathy recently retired from school counseling. Her energy in the off season is focusing now on our annual Brown Ledge Magazine publication, and supporting our development initiatives.


For a number of summers, Bill was the trip boat pilot and ski boat driver.

Bill graduated from the University of Vermont with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and Masters of Business Administration.  Bill worked previously as an Advance Program Planner and Contract Administrator for General Electric.  Prior to his employment at GE, he was a Project Supervisor for a development corporation.

Bill and Kathy, known by most at BLC simply as “B & K”, are a dynamic team who have led Brown Ledge successfully for over thirty years. Bill and Kathy have two adult children; Emily and Ben.


Assistant Director

KimAssistant Director JC Director Kim McManus

Kim McManus was hired fulltime in 2007 to support Bill and Kathy administratively  during the summer, and in the off-season. While Kim jokes that her description is “whatever Bill and Kathy tell me to do”, much of her work for camp revolves around camper re-enrollment, and new camper recruitment. If you are a new parent, you will more than likely speak with Kim if you call the office. During the summer, Kim runs the junior counselor leadership program.

Kim, like Kathy, was a Brown Ledge camper, junior counselor and counselor (sailing).  During her college years Kim graduated from Tufts with a B.A in History, has a law degree from American University, and utilizes all of her past careers (teacher, coach, and lawyer) in her work for BLC.


Our Staff

Each season, Brown Ledge Camp employs about 80 staff members.  Of the co-ed staff, about 65 are counselors and 15 are support staff. Staff range in age from 19 to 65+, with most being about 26 years old, and represent a variety of backgrounds, skills and personalities. Additionally, about 15-20% of the staff is from outside the United States.

We are very proud of the staff we hire each summer. Great pains are taken to find just the right balance between new staff, and returning staff; to find experts in instruction who also have engaging, fun personalities. Please take a look at our activity pages and click on ‘Meet the Staff’ to read a short bio for each of our staff members from last summer. They are individually, and collectively, an impressive group.

Staff is given a great deal of autonomy in the operation of activity departments and instructional format. Because of this counselors are hired for their maturity and sense of responsibility, as well as experience and/or performance ability.

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