About Camp Concepts
For us- camp is about creating meaningful and memorable moments that can impact the lives of our campers. Camp Concepts, Inc. is owned by Steve Haines. His professional experience includes serving as a middle school teacher for more than 25 years at local independent schools. He served at the George School Day Camp for 22 years (1992-2014) where he was the director of the day camp for 14 years. He began Camp Concepts back in the late 90’s by offering sports clinics. His passion for creative programming blossomed to now include several programs under the Camp Concepts business umbrella. With a goal to create stronger communities through camp, Camp Concepts blends several unique camp programs all together onto one campus that makes a happy and strong Big Oak camp community.
Steve also formed Advantage-USA which handles his international business ventures including HORIZONS USA– a 3-week summer language experience for International students, international educational consulting for those seeking admission to private schools in the United States as well as his Teacher Training Seminars he leads in China. In addition to developing innovative camp programs, Steve is committed to helping Chinese teachers create a more connected classroom experience.
Steve is also principle partner in Immersive Education Associates- an education technology firm leading the global online education revolution in Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality & Mixed Reality.
Steve is married to Ruth and together have five children and 4 grandchildren.
Our Leadership Team
About the Big Oak Day Camp Leadership Team
An important factor in any business is the experience of its leaders. Camp Concepts is educator owned and operated and has over 150 years of collective camp and teaching experience.
Their experience and passion are noticeable and unique. Each understands the deep value of camp in the lives of kids and has the experience to make each Camp Concepts camp the best in the region.
Steve Haines-Executive Director
Steve spent 22 years at George School Day Camp where he directed, designed and significantly grew that program. Steve has devoted his career to working with children. Launching Camp Concepts back in 2000, today, Little Buds Day Camp and Expressions Day Camp continues to offer unique summer programs to children. He is also the President of Advantage-USA ,an international educational consulting firm that also designed and runs HORIZONS USA-(an English language immersion summer program) as well as helping Chinese students gain admission to US private high schools and universities. Steve spends signficant time in China doing speaking engagements as well as conducting leadership and teacher training seminars. Steve is also part owner of The Sports Zone in Southampton– a family fun center specializing in birthday parties and family fun. Steve earned his Master’s Degree in history and taught US History, Phys. Ed. & Health at Newtown Friends School for 20 years before finishing his teaching career teaching history at Plumstead Christian School.
Big Oak Director- Kevin has been a director of both day and overnight camps and continues to be a Health and Physical Education which he has been doing for over 30 years. Kevin is a master facilitator who captivates and motivates through his energy and excitement. Anyone who meets Kevin is immediately infused and convinced of his love of working with children. Kevin is also part owner of The Sports Zone in Southampton. Kevin is married and the father to son Collin.
Big Oak Director- Steve has been an educator for 40 years at Buckingham Friends School. Most notably, Assistant Director, Steve Bernardini was part of the dynamic administrative duo “Steve & Steve” at George School Day Camp. Having been at George School since 1982, Steve is a gifted and talented administrator and teacher. Steve is married and the father of two grown children.
Expressions Day Camp director- Debbie is a current teacher in the Philadelphia School District where she brings her energy, passion, and professionalism to the classroom and to those she meets. Debbie's talents were noticed when Steve hired her to serv as Lower Camp coordinator at the George School Day Camp. Debbie loves camp and after even a short conversation with her, you will too! Debbie is married and mother to Adam. Debbie is the director of our camp for kids who need social skill strengthening called Expressions Day Camp that also takes place on our Big Oak campus. Debbie has also led the camper group to China in the summer and fall of 2019.
Expressions Assistant Director- Rachel has been working with Expressions campers for 7 years. During her time with us she has served in many key roles and is now serving as Assistant Director. Currently, in the off-season, she is teaching learning support for K-3rd grade. Rachel graduated from Millersville University with a dual degree in Early Childhood and Special Education. She is also currently working to get her masters degree in Literacy. Among the many things she loves about camp is watching friendships bloom between campers. Rachel is also a proud pug mom!
Director of Little Buds- Ashley has been with Camp Concepts for nearly 10 years. A middle school teacher during the school year, Ashley brings steady leadership and creativity to the director role of Little Buds. Ashley graduated from Bucknell University with Elementary & Early Childhood Education and loves her work with Little Buds!
Little Buds Assistant Director- Jennifer is a Kindergarten teacher during the school year and has been with Camp Concepts for the past 8 years. Having graduated from DeSales University in Early Childhood education. Jennifer is a nurturing and loving leader of our 2/3-year-olds at Little Buds and they love her too! She is currently finishing her masters degree in Early Childhool Literacy.