Executive Summit & 69th Annual Recognition Dinner - Program

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Keynote Speaker
Education Sessions
Awards & Recognition Dinner
The Legacy Circle
Schedule at a Glance

Who Should Attend

This premier event is designed for camp owners, executives, camp directors and camp legends.

Executive Summit

Designed to support the needs of experienced camp professionals - specifically camp owners, executives and Camp Directors - the Executive Summit creates a space for exchange, networking and professional development while also providing education, led by recognized experts within and outside the camping field and covering critical topics such as risk management, legislation, board development and business, keeping camp leaders up to date with the latest laws, issues, research and trends.

Keynote Speaker:  Dr. Ernie Mendes

Ernie Mendes is an author, executive coach, and a professional development trainer. He has been training teachers and leaders since 1988 and has worked with over 75 diverse organizations including businesses, school districts, law enforcement agencies and health centers. Dr. Mendes's diverse professional background includes a combined 23 years as a classroom teacher at the secondary and post-secondary level and 11 years as a licensed psychotherapist in private practice.

Dr. Mendes was one of the first to do a doctoral study on Emotional Intelligence (EI). He studied the relationship between EI and occupational burnout in teachers. His book Empty the Cup Before You Fill It Up is a best seller, complete with practical activities to build effective relationships at work and in the classroom using EI theory and neuroscience. His recent book, Engage 4 Learning looks at four main brain systems to explore ways to engage K-adult learners in educational settings. To read more about Ernie, visit his website at erniemendes.com.

Education Sessions

  • Ask the Experts Panel:  Regulations, Laws & Legislation
  • OSHA for Camps
  • Creating Outstanding Staff Teams
  • Marketing: Digital Remix
  • Lessons from the ACA Crisis Hotline
  • Finances in Tough Economic Times

Topics subject to change.

Awards & Recognition Dinner

In the evening, join your camp community for a networking reception, followed by a gourmet dinner, keynote and awards presentation, honoring outstanding camp programs and volunteers in the Southern California/Hawaii region.  

Congratulations to the 2012 Award Recipients!

Legacy Circle:

Marge Driscoll
Gabby Leon
Sr. Patricia McGowan

Outstanding Service:

Jennifer "Dot" Mains


Randy Miyashiro
Andrea Sanford

Camp Program:

Irvine Ranch Outdoor Education Center
Joe Ide Summer Camp Program (All People's Christian Center)                            

Rising Star:

Nate Friedman
Charina Layman

Shirley Walch:

Mickey Stone

Paul Somers Golden Acorn:

Joan Horton
Eric Ikari
Stuart Jones
Diane Tabangay
Senator Mimi Walters                                                


The Legacy Circle


One of the most special parts of the evening is the induction of individuals into the Legacy Circle. This award honors the vision and support of those individuals who have been committed to the field of organized camping and the American Camp Association for over 30 years and have served in leadership capacities in Southern California or Hawaii.  

View Legacy Circle Inductees - 2012
View Legacy Circle Inductees - 2011
View Legacy Circle Founding Members - 2010

We're Endorsed!

This means that the Executive Summit has been successfully vetted according to recognized criteria and that YOU can get up to 4 Continuing Education Credits (CECs) by participating in the program.  For more information about how to get documentation of the CECs that you've earned, go to:  Manage My CECs.

For more information about Educational Endorsement or to attend more events/online trainings that are endorsed, visit www.ACAcamps.org/pdc/educational-endorsement-program

What Happened to the Annual Meeting?

We've renamed the Annual Meeting to "Executive Summit and Recognition Dinner", because we feel it is more relevant to our members and community.  Originally, the Annual Meeting was so named because it was a meeting for members to be updated on the state of the section and to vote on specific issues.  Now that this function has been removed from the event - and we want to be inclusive of all camp professionals, including non-members - we've landed at "Executive Summit and Annual Recognition Dinner", which we feel gives a better explanation of what participants can expect from the event.  But don't worry, the same great education, networking and celebration will be there!

Schedule at a Glance

12:00pm-1:00pm Registration & Networking
1:00pm-2:00pm Opening Keynote Presentation
2:15pm-3:30pm Educational Sessions
3:45pm-5:00pm Educational Sessions
5:00pm-6:00pm Cocktail Reception
6:00pm-8:00pm Dinner and Awards Presentation

Schedule subject to change.