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Brenda Tessler Donen (left); Lauren Bronstein

By BERNIE BELLAN
The longtime director of B’nai Brith Camp Kenora, Brenda Tessler Donen has announced that she is retiring after 28 years in that position.

In a message posted on the camp’s website, Tessler Donen wrote:
Shana Tov - a new year, the start of new beginnings and the celebration of career that has reached its end.
After 28 years working at BB Camp, I have officially retired. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the over 13 sets of Board Chairs and Directors, 22,000 plus campers, close to 2800 staff, an endless pool of both resident and day camp families, incredible alumni near and far, special working relationships with my fellow JCC Camp Directors and other movement camps, experiences and relationships with various local community leadership, and a legion of donors that have enabled me to grow the Camp.
I am very grateful for the summers of fun and the lifetimes of friendships, memories, and skills I have helped facilitate for our children and youth, the camp community, and myself. It wasn’t always an easy road and I leave with only a few regrets. Thankfully, there are many, many positive experiences that I will treasure.


To the current BB Camp staff - thank you for an incredible year! You inspired me daily with your boundless energy, love and dedication of Camp. Thank you to a wonderful parent body for your endless support of BB Camp. I truly appreciate all of your feedback and your special thank you letters post Camp. To a longstanding list of dedicated board members throughout the past 28 years - thank you for your guidance and support. You have taught me the importance of teamwork. To Lauren Bronstein - I am so proud that we had the opportunity to work together again. I can’t wait to see how Camp unfolds under your leadership.
Finally and most importantly, thank you to my family and friends for their unconditional love and supporting my path of being a perpetual camper. I am so blessed that I was able to work alongside my children over the past 11 years. That gift I will cherish forever.
With love and gratitude,
Brenda

In March 2017 Lauren Bronstein became associate director of BB Camp Kenora. At that time the following information about Lauren Bronstein was posted to the BB Camp website:
Lauren will be rejoining the BB Camp team, in the new role of Associate Director, working with the entire organization as a lead member of the leadership team in creating the vision and the development and implementation of programs that shape and define the BB Camp experience for children ages eight – 16.


Lauren, a Master of Arts in International Affairs graduate from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs, Carleton University and a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) graduate from the IH Asper School of Business, University of Manitoba, is skillful in Jewish camping, the foundation of which began at BB Camp in the early 90s. Lauren spent four summers as a camper, one in leadership training program, and eight as a summer staff member culminating with the last two summers serving as the Assistant Director. She then pursued a career in public service, working as a Junior Policy Analyst for the Democratic Institutions and Conflict Division in the former Canadian International Development Agency, and for the past eight years, working for Global Affairs Canada in a number of advancing roles, most recently, Senior Program Manager, Counter Terrorism Capacity Building Program.
While residing in Ottawa, Lauren was an active volunteer in the Ottawa Jewish Community. She served as a trip leader twice for the Social Action Mission to Israel and was a member of the Shoah Committee of Ottawa. Lauren also served on a number of committees and board activities with the Jewish Federation of Ottawa (JFO), including as a member at large of the JFO Board of Directors, Chair of the Jewish Outreach Institute and Education Committee, and Co-Chair of the Young Women’s Leadership Council. Since her return to Winnipeg in September, Lauren has joined the March of the Living committee.


Lauren developed a strong reputation within the Ottawa Jewish community and abroad as an engaging, dynamic leader and she possesses a strong commitment to professionalism. She will bring her extensive work experience and Jewish communal involvement to the Camp, working closely with the Executive Director as the Camp prepares for its upcoming season.
As someone who grew up at overnight camp, values the impact of wilderness experiences and desires to focus on Jewish engagement, Lauren will be a tremendous asset to the organization. Tessler Donen notes, “I am thrilled that Lauren will be part of the BB Camp Team”.

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