The 2014 election results are in! With 117 votes submitted, Graelyn Brashear won the seat for At- Large Board Member while Chris Chamberlin retained his seat as Vice President. Corey Basham has been appointed as our new Service Weekend Chair and he’ll be greeting everyone at our upcoming service weekend on the third weekend of May. You’ll find a short bio of our new members below. This coming election year we’ll be offering electronic voting for those who wish to use it. Our election committee will work out the details and publish instructions in the fall edition of the Afterglow. Thank you to everyone who participated in the election last year!

Graelyn Brashear – At Large Member:
I’m the news editor at C-VILLE Weekly in Charlottesville, and have seven years’ experience as a journalist in print publications. My written and oral communications skills are solid, but working as a reporter has also allowed me to hone other skills I believe I could put to good use as a member of the NCF board: I listen, learn, and absorb well; I can get a lot out of a single conversation; I’m good at taking a complex message and delivering it in a relatable and understandable way; and I live by deadlines that are important not just to me but many others.

Nature Camp shaped me in powerful ways. I minored in plant science in college because even though I knew I was headed for a non-science career, the love of the natural world I developed in my summers in Vesuvius demanded that I keep one foot in the sciences. I also grew into an adult deeply valuing the feeling of community Camp gave me, a sense of having a stake in something bigger and more important than me or my dear friends who joined me in it. I’m ready to do more to pour some energy back into that community!

Corey Basham – Service Weekend Chair:
It took a green bumper sticker and the Fredericksen family’s (former camper and counselors Nell and Todd) recommendation to get me to camp for the first time in early 2013. After departing Ferrum College with a biology degree I entered the work force as an Environmental Health Specialist with the Virginia Department of Health in Franklin County and served in that role for three and a half years conducting various different inspections of food service and manufacturing plants. I was driven to leave VDH and join an industrial emissions testing company in an attempt to utilize my background in science a bit further. Unfortunately, smoke-stack testing for a private firm required such disregard for one’s own well-being that I quickly decided to end my time there and began looking for a place that would allow me to utilize my falconry bird, a red-tailed hawk named Eleanor, in environmental education. I remembered Todd Fredericksen’s preference for a place called Nature Camp and I contacted him to see if camp might be a good fit. Three months later I pulled up to the LS, ready to teach.

Since my time as a counselor I’ve been able to support camp’s mission and return the overwhelming love I’ve felt from everyone I’ve met there through giving my time and energy in many ways including service weekends, giving evening programs during the summer, and teaching during adult sessions. I’m currently back with VDH inspecting restaurants but I spend a portion of my time evaluating summer camps, swimming pools, and septic systems and would be able to share that knowledge with the board when guidance regarding compliance with the Virginia regulations is necessary. I also have a solid background in carpentry, construction, and maintenance that would allow me to contribute to discussions regarding facilities repair.

I’ve spent most of my life moving here and there and found difficulty in identifying with a place enough to call it home. Nature Camp has become that home for me; a place I can go to retreat, develop, and focus on the propagation of what I believe to be truly good in the world. I will continue to serve camp in any capacity I am able and am honored to be named Service Weekend Coordinator. I look forward to seeing many of you in May!