Staff Photo, Pine Island Camp in Belgrade Lakes, Maine.

Leadership

Director

Sumner Ford, Director | sford@pineisland.org

After a year of searching for the perfect summer camp, Sumner first set foot on PIC for the 2000 summer as a nine-year-old. He quickly fell in love with Pine Island, returning for the next six summers as a camper. Sumner's first year on staff was as a fly-fishing instructor in 2009, and his summers have been spent at Pine Island ever since.

After teaching fly-fishing, Sumner became one of Pine Island's Expedition Camp directors and then served as assistant director from 2014 through 2018. In 2019, Sumner transitioned into the role of Director. He is Pine Island's sixth director in nearly 120 years. Sumner brings much to this role: a deep love of camping and the outdoors, seemingly endless patience with boys and staff, proven leadership skills, a lively and slightly mischievous sense of humor, a love of reading and ideas, and a deep appreciation of all the traditions and quirks that make Pine Island unique and so valuable. In short, Pine Island is lucky to have handed the helm to such an able and thoughtful person.

Sumner studied at St. Lawrence University, earning his B.S. in Environmental Geology and serving as a leader of the outing club. He currently resides in Richmond, Vermont during the off-season.

Director of Operations

Ben Swan, Director of Operations | benswan@pineisland.org

Ben Swan was born during the 1955 camp season, and he has been connected with Pine Island in some capacity ever since. He spent his childhood at Pine Island, as a camper then as a counselor. He continued as a member of Pine Island Camp's board of directors, returning to the staff in 1988 as assistant director. He assumed the post of director in 1990 and served in that capacity for thirty years. Since handing the helm to Sumner Ford, Ben has become Pine Island's director of operations. In this role he is responsible for the upkeep of Pine Island's boats, vehicles, and facilities on Great Pond, at Whitehead Light Station, and at Norridgewock. Ben continues to serve as editor of the Pine Needle and helps to raise funds for Pine Island. All of these activities allow him to stay in touch with generations of alumni.

Ben's family's involvement with Pine Island Camp dates to 1908, when his grandfather purchased the fledgling institution, and he was the third generation of his family to serve as Pine Island's director. Ben has a B.A. in English from Washington & Lee University and an M.A. in English from the University of Virginia. He was a teacher at Episcopal High School in Alexandria, Virginia for several years before returning to Maine to work for Pine Island.

Business Manager

Emily Swan, Business Manager | eswan@pineisland.org

Emily married into the Pine Island Camp community in 1987 and became its business manager in 1990. After 30 years of overseeing the details of running the camp and serving as the voice at the other end of the phone line during the Pine Island season, she is moving away from active involvement with camp during the summer while continuing to work on administrative matters during the off-season. Emily has a B.A. in history from the University of the South at Sewanee and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Emily and Ben raised their children Harry, Rip and Katie in Brunswick, Maine. Emily is president of the board of the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust, and she volunteers assisting local asylum seekers, with the local library, and with the League of Women Voters registering new voters at naturalization ceremonies and other public events. She has been an enthusiastic member of her book group in Brunswick for almost 30 years!

Director of Communications

Sarah Hunter, Director of Communications | shunter@pineisland.org

Sarah joined Pine Island Camp in the fall of 2009 and soon became an indispensable member of the Pine Island team. She keeps the camp community informed with monthly newsletters and communicates with current and prospective camp families throughout the year. She also manages our database, coordinates our travel schedule, and performs numerous other tasks to ensure camp runs smoothly. Sarah is currently in the process of assuming the role of chief administrator. She has a B.A. in American Studies from the University of New England. Like many Pine Islanders, she has a lifelong love of the outdoors. Sarah has hiked all 67 of the highest mountains in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont - many of them in winter - and is working to ascend the hundred highest mountains in New England. She hikes with her husband, Jason, and their sons Caleb and Silas, who are both PIC alums, and with trips she leads as a volunteer leader for the Maine Chapter of the Appalachian Mountain Club. Sarah is also passionate about bike travel and has designed and embarked on several self-supported long-distance bike tours with her family. A few of their tours have been featured by Adventure Cycling Association, a non-profit whose mission is to inspire and empower people to travel by bicycle. When they're not off on hiking or cycling adventures, Sarah and her family are at home in Durham, Maine.

Summer Manager

Lindsay Clarke, Summer Manager

We are pleased to announce that long-time Pine Islander Lindsay Clarke has accepted the role of summer manager, previously filled by Emily Swan. Lindsay is no stranger to Pine Island. She was PIC's head swimming counselor for five years and an assistant director for one, and she was the first woman to serve as general in the War Game (and yes, her army was victorious!). For several years, she ran a nonprofit organization that partnered with local communities to promote education and economic development in Cameroon, and since 2007 has been a middle and high school history teacher at Waynflete School in Portland, Maine. Lindsay lives in Portland with her daughter Sagan.

Director of Pine Island's Whitehead Island Program

Anne Stires, Director of Pine Island's Whitehead Island Program

Anne Stires spent her childhood summers on Whitehead Island: her father served as director of the Whitehead program for 14 years (1981-1995). Anne worked at Pine Island in 1991 and 1992 as a babysitter for the Swan family and on Whitehead as cook for the Pine Island program there in 1993 and 1994. In 2002 she assumed the role her father once held, director of the Pine Island program at Whitehead Island. She also was the island manager of the Whitehead Light Station for two summers as Pine Island was just beginning to use the facility. Anne majored in Biology and English at Hamilton College and holds an M.Ed. in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Antioch University, where she now teaches. Since 2011, Anne has also been the Founder and Executive Director of Juniper Hill School, a thriving pioneer in nature- and place-based early childhood and elementary education (serving Pre-K to 5th grade students), in Alna, ME. She is also a Wilderness First Responder. In the off-season, Anne lives in Alna, Maine with her son, Pine Islander Eben Weislogel.