Our Full-Time Staff
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Neal began his ministry at Wabanna back in 2000 as a senior boy’s counselor. Originally from Cincinnati, OH., he moved to Maryland 2 years later to teach full time for Anne Arundel County & volunteer at camp on the weekends. After teaching 4 years, he came on staff full time serving as the Summer Director and the Director of Development until he stepped in as Executive Director in 2014. With a BSBA from Xavier University, and a Masters of Education from Vanderbilt University, Neal feels like God has used his education and experiences to prepare him for each aspect of camping ministry. What continues to drive him is a desire to impact children with the power of the gospel, and see them come to a genuine relationship with Christ! His family loves the outdoors, & in his free time, you can find Neal spending time with his wife Jenny, and their three daughters, Madelyn, Ella & Lucy!
FUN FACT: He never went to camp as a kid!
While some would say his high school girlfriend (now wife, Rachel) led him to Wabanna, this Mount Ayr, Iowa RN came in 2009 to serve as our Summer Camp Nurse. He came back the following summer to counsel for 2 weeks, but then headed back to Iowa to start a life with his new bride. Camp stayed on their hearts and when an opportunity arose to move out here in 2014, they jumped on it. Grant kept the property looking better than ever until God called him to serve as the summer camp director. From the beginning, what set Wabanna apart for Grant was the discipleship—campers coming back year after year; then going on to become staff; then on to becoming leaders. When Grant is not at camp, he can be found climbing, biking, hiking, mountaineering, or enjoying time (especially outdoors!) with his wife Rachel and their son Tristan.
FUN FACT: He was once the lead in a musical!
Registrar and Bookkeeper
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Coming to Maryland all the way from Duncanville, TX., Shannon began serving here in 1994 when she came out with her family to visit Tim Duggins (executive director of Wabanna from 1990-2004) who had been a student of her father’s. After that visit, Wabanna had her heart and she never went back home! She has served in just about every capacity there is at Wabanna, from kitchen staff, to housekeeping, to office manager, to weekend crew, and finally our beloved “Regi-keeper” (aka- our Registrar and our Bookkeeper). Her all-time favorite role was getting to be a chaperone at Adventure World back in the day when we used to take campers there. Shannon loves naps, not getting sunburned, and making delicious sushi for all of us who are lucky enough to partake! Also, hanging out with her “camp family” is on the top of her list of things to do.
FUN FACT: In 2012 she competed in “The Great River Amazon Raft Race” in Peru…where she almost died.
Director of Communications
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Born and raised in Maryland, Tara spent her first summer at Wabanna in 1993. She came back as an overnight camper every summer after that, and in 2002 she worked here for the first time! Starting as a lifeguard and serving as a junior camp counselor, day camp counselor, and day camp director, her summers at Wabanna go in the books as her favorite ever. Tara graduated from Salisbury University with a degree in Communications and Conflict Resolution. She married her high school sweetheart, Ben, in 2007 and they lived and served at camp for 5 years. During that time, Tara served two years as our Summer Camp Director before she and Ben moved into a house on a nearby farm that they built themselves! Nearly 4 years later, the Lord called her back to Wabanna. Tara is also mom to daughters Ellie & Alice and a professional wedding photographer!
FUN FACT: One summer, as a senior camper long ago, Tara came to camp with PINK hair!
Director of Operations
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Coming to Wabanna all the way from Upper Darby, PA., Patrick is a Calvin College grad with a degree in Recreation & Business…which basically means he took rock climbing, bowling, & accounting classes. While at Calvin, God laid camping ministry on his heart. It required tremendous growth personally, and in many job specific areas before the timing was right for him to take up this particular full time staff position. He has been happily serving here since 2012, and takes full advantage of declaring the love & power of our Creator God to anyone who steps foot on our property! When he’s not fixing everything at camp, you’ll find him on a sailboat, or a bike, up a mountain, bayside fishing, or planning his next ice climbing adventure. Patrick lives on the property with his wife Kristen, and their three children Reilly, Jericho & Charlianne.
FUN FACT: He kayaked the everglades for 6 weeks as a “college class”.
Retreat Center Director
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Beth came to Wabanna for the first time in 1997 to visit her older sister (Jenny Luebbers) who was working here. It wasn’t until 2003 though, that she spent her first summer here working on our programming staff. That summer, she got to know the Retreat Center Director and told him, “If you ever quit your job here, please call me so I can apply for it!” And 3 years later, she got the call! Moving here in 2006 from her hometown of Waterloo, IA., she has been organizing and decorating camp ever since! Beth has a gift in hospitality, serving the Lord as she serves others. Beth has a love for Haagen Dazs ice cream, sparkling water, and beautifying spaces with her keen eye for design. She also loves Excel spreadsheets, checklists, and bullet points. Beth lives at camp with her husband Dan and their daughters Katy and Karis.
FUN FACT: She mis-spelled her own name on her marriage license. #whoops
Food Service Manager
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Brittney came from Blairs Mills, PA to work as a counselor in 2017, and has never looked back. Brittney is a true example of servant leadership. After counseling her first summer, Brittney stayed on as “part time staff” to serve our retreat guests. After a second summer, where she worked in the kitchen, Brittney accepted the full-time position as Food Service Manager. Brittney is a wonderful leader– & she previously managed a Subway for 5 years. She is also the oldest of 7 siblings! Her love for the ministry of Wabanna grew quickly, but she also has a deep affection for God’s creation and the great outdoors. When Brittney isn’t working early mornings in the kitchen, you can find her kayaking, hiking, biking, exploring caves, or boating on the lake near her Pennsylvania home. Brittney’s favorite way to enjoy nature is camping!
FUN FACT: She has a 20-something-year-old sticker collection that will rival any craft store.
Byron hails from the small town of Cazenovia, New York. Full of boundless energy and enthusiasm, Byron has worn many hats. He spent 12 years owning and training horses in dressage, and went to Morrisville State College where he broke records on the Track & Field team. After graduating with a degree in automotive management, he moved to Maryland in 2017 to work in the insurance industry and became a member of a local church where our Executive Director serves as an elder. After learning about the ministry of Wabanna, Byron prayerfully left his career in insurance to become our Grounds Manager in 2019. Byron still loves running and cycling in his free time. Byron is also 1 of 6 kids, left-handed, and makes a mean dish of “Chicken Riggies”. He and his wife, Joanna, are newlyweds happily living at camp!
FUN FACT: In college, Byron held the record as the third fastest runner in conference history.