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Meet Our Senior Staff

Rabbi David Shenker, Founding Director
Rabbi Shenker has been at the helm of Camp Nageela since it’s inception in 1988. His vision of creating a top notch summer camp, staffed by young men and women who exude positiveenergy and a passion for Jewish life has blossomed into the three camps of the Nageela Jewish Experiences network that he currently guides. Rabbi Shenker’s stated goal for camping is to strive for each camper to get the maximum enjoyment and benefit from camp. His recipe is for each day in camp to have generous amounts of physical fun, positive social relationships and intellectual stimulation.

With degrees in engineering and rabbinics, combined with his expertise in informal Jewish education honed by years as director of Jewish Education Program (JEP) of Long Island, and thirty years of camping experience, he is particularly suited to lead this most innovative camp movement.

Rabbi Mordechai Shenker, Director
Mordechai grew up in Camp Nageela. He started from the bottom and worked his way up, from assisting in maintenance, to canteen, to junior counselor, counselor, division head and then Assistant Director.

As Assistant Director, he spearheaded the American Camp Association certification process, and the continued upgrading of our program.

Safety first, then fun and growth, are his priorities.

Rabbi Yitzie Staum, Boy’s Head Counselor
Rabbi Staum has been a “camp guy” his whole life. Moving up the ladder from camper to counselor to division head, with a brief stint in a camp kitchen, then Educational Director and Head Counselor, he has almost 30 years in the camping business. This well rounded experience means Rabbi Staum has the know how to run a great camp. This summer will be his fifth year as Head Counselor of Camp Nageela (and 6th in the Camp Nageela Network). Working closely with Rabbi Shenker, Rabbi Staum takes great pride in his exceptional Camp Nageela staff, who maintain a high level of professionalism and care, while giving the campers the summer of their lives. Before moving from the Queens, NY area, Rabbi Staum was the Shabbaton coordinator of JEP of Long Island, in addition to involvement with various other youth organizations.

Rabbi Staum currently lives with his wife and 6 children in Chesterfield, MO. He is the Rabbinical Director of Programing and Outreach at Congregation Tpheris Israel Chevra Kadisha in Chesterfield, and a Judaic Subject and Jewish History teacher at the H.F. Epstein Hebrew Academy. His wife, Mrs. Racheli Staum, is the director of the Aish HaTorah of St. Louis Sunday School as well as third grade teacher at the H.F. Epstein Hebrew Academy. With their extensive involvement in Jewish Education, community affairs, as well as parents of 6 children, you can rest assured that when you send your children to Camp Nageela, they will be well cared for.

Mrs. Lieba Myers, Nageela Classic Girls Head Counselor
Lieba has been involved with summer camps all her life. As a youngster, she attended a summer camp where her mother was the head counselor. She thoroughly enjoyed the camp spirit and enthusiasm that permeated the atmosphere. From there she went on to be a staff member in several camps, including Camp Simcha, a camp for children struggling with life threatening illnesses. For the last number of years Lieba considers herself fortunate to be a member of the Camp Nageela family, filling the position of camp mom. As a mother of three delicious children, Lieba has the been able to channel her “real mom” experience to help hundreds of campers feel confident that there was a “mom” in camp looking out for them.

Throughout the year Lieba is known as a star teacher in a small, specialized school in New Jersey where she supervises a classroom with children with disabilities. Using her dual Education/Special Education degree, she combines her knowledge and fun-loving nature to create an educational and fun environment in her classroom. She coordinates a dynamic curriculum to meet each child’s needs and specifications, and the environment in her class is charged with happiness and song. Lieba’s contagious energy and vigorous personality brighten the day of anyone she encounters. It is an honor for her to assume the position of Head Counselor at Nageela Classic division where she will no doubt energize the camp with excitement, creativity, and joy. Her past experience as camp mom, along with her talents and electric personality will undoubtedly make this summer the most rocking one yet!

Hindy Newmark, TeeNageela Girls Program Director
Throughout the year Hindy Newmark is the program director for Batya, a network of teen youth groups throughout the US. Batya and TeeNageela work together throughout the year to provide teens with programs and events where they can connect with other Jewish girls in a fun and exciting environment. Hindy is an experienced mentor and educator. She received Live Coach certification through the International Coaching Foundation with a specialty in teens and young adults, and has extensive training in leadership development and life skills training. Hindy combines her years of experience of working with young adults, and her creative energy to create an exclusive teen program that is designed to provide teenage girls with an exciting camp experience, as well as encourage skill development and personal growth.



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