Chris first joined Tate’s Day Camp in 1989 while attending the University of Tennessee. He thought he was only looking for a fun summer job but quickly learned that he had found his career. After serving as a camp counselor, head counselor, and assistant director, he accepted the Executive Director role in 1993. In addition to directing summer camp, he is also the Executive Director of Programs for Tate's School. Chris is the past President of the American Camp Association, Heart of the South Section and has served on numerous committees and task forces with the national organization. He is also a former national board member of the Camp Owners and Directors Association. Chris holds a Communications degree from the University of Tennessee and has completed extensive training for camp professionals through the American Camp Association.
Jonathan has been involved with Tate’s programs for fourteen years. Over that course of time he has worked with both camp and school programs in various capacities, including serving as a co-author for published leadership training courses with the American Camp Association, and serving as a primary trainer for challenge course staff. Jonathan is a graduate of Carson-Newman University where he obtained a Bachelor of Music in Voice, and also a Master’s in Counseling and Behavioral Health. He also enjoys teaching courses at Johnson University where he is an adjunct professor in Social and Behavioral Sciences. Additionally, he works with individuals and families in private practice as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. When not working with Tate’s programs, Jonathan enjoys time with his family, singing opera, and refining his skills as a hobbyist blacksmith.
Matt is beginning his eighth summer at Tate’s and serves as the CIT Director. He is also a former staff member of our afterschool program at Tate’s School. Matt holds a Master’s of Education and a Bachelor’s of Arts in History with a minor in Business Administration from the University of Tennessee. He is currently working as a 5th grade math and science teacher at Tate’s School and is the head elementary and middle school cross country and track and field coach.
Abby is beginning her sixth summer at Tate’s and will be the Assistant Discovery Program Director. Prior to this summer, Abby has worked with the three year-old campers and coordinated Evening Camp Option last summer. Abby attends Berry College in Georgia and will graduate in May of 2018 with a degree in Early Childhood Education. She loves camp songs and playing in puddles when it rains.
Kimery Connard is beginning her second summer at Tate’s Day Camp. Kimery has an array of previous experience in both business and child development. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee where she received a Bachelor of Science in Family Studies. She enjoys meeting and speaking with all the families and children who attend camp, the family-like atmosphere, and watching the children learn and grow as they enjoy their summers here. She is the mother of two college-age daughters, and in her spare time she enjoys photography, reading, and walking her dogs. Be sure to call her with all your camp questions.
Grayson grew up at Tate’s Day Camp attending every summer since he was age 3, and he has been on staff since the summer of 2013. As Aquatics Director, Grayson is responsible for supervising and maintaining our three swimming pools and the pond area as well as teaching swimming lessons. He is Lifeguard, CPR, First Aid, and AED certified. One of the things he enjoys most about camp is seeing the campers try new things and gain confidence in their swimming abilities. Grayson attends school at Georgia Tech where he studies Aerospace Engineering.
Rachael is in her sixth year at Tate's Day Camp. She worked one year at Welcome Center and five years in Discovery Camp. She previously held the position of Program Director for the Preschool/Kindergarten program of the Tate’s School Afterschool Program. In May of 2015, Rachael graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Bachelor’s in Psychology, and in December of 2016 graduated from Lincoln Memorial University with a Master’s in Elementary Education. This fall she will teach Kindergarten at Sequoyah Elementary School.
Bekah is beginning her fifth summer at Tate’s and serves as the Assistant Explorer Program Director. Bekah is also trained to lead climbing tower, zip line, tree climbing, low ropes, archery, and marksmanship. Bekah holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Tennessee and is currently working toward her Master’s Degree in School Counseling at Carson Newman University. Bekah also serves as the head elementary school cross country and track and field coach.
Tyler is entering his fifth summer at Tate's Day Camp. In those five years, he has spent time in a variety of the incredible areas that Tate's has to offer from the Discovery Program to Explorer/Adventure Program as well as the special areas of camp including Aquatics and the RATT pack. After graduating in May of this year with a degree in Secondary Education he received his license to teach History/Social Studies in grades 6-12 and will soon be acquiring certifications in both ELA and Economics. He has plans to coach and to further his education, and he could not be more excited to begin his career as an educator.