Camp Jeanne d’Arc

154 Gadway Road
Merrill, NY 12955

T: 704-936-7459 (Sandy)
T: 704-960-3949 (Randy)
F: 704-842-3859

2019 Staff


We are Sandy and Randy Abbott, the proud owners of Camp Jeanne d’Arc (aka Camp Mom and Dad). We are counting down the days until we are back at camp with our amazing campers and staff! Otherwise, we stay busy trying to keep-up with our four kids: Anna (20), Luke (16), Caleb (14) and Josh (11). During the off-season, we live in North Carolina, and enjoy traveling around the world to visit our campers. Sandy stays super busy being a homeschool-teacher to our boys, as well as workingout, and volunteering in the community. Randy still has hopes of playing in the NBA . He plays a lot of basketball, and volunteer coaches in the community. We love Camp Jeanne d’Arc, and absolutely love what we do!

Head Counselor

My name is Steph (also answer to Beyoncé 😉 ) and I’m from Dublin, Ireland. This summer will be my 7th summer at CJDA. I was a counselor for 5 summers (2011-2015) and Head Counselor last summer (2018). Apart from being surrounded by amazing, supportive, positive friends–my favorite thing about camp are the special events like Wishing night, Christmas in July, and many more. Ohhhh and S’mores! I love S’mores! Another thing I love is Musical Theatre. I am currently working as a Drama and Dance Teacher/Performer in Ireland. I’m looking forward to bringing some Musical Theatre fun to camp this summer. I can’t wait to see you all for another amazing summer!

Head Counselor

Hi! I’m Lauren! I’m always ready for a good grilled cheese sandwich and hanging with my husband and our two pups, Theo and Archie. This is my 14th summer at camp and 4th as a head counselor. Every year at camp, I look forward to canoeing, campfire, and being with friends both old and new. When I’m not at camp, I teach art history, and research while working towards my doctorate. Come find me to talk about canoe techniques, or histories of photographies, or anything at all, really! I’m counting down the days until we’re all at camp together.

Assistant Director

Hi, everyone! My name is Claire Cusack Larson and this summer will be my 16th at camp. I’ve been a camper, counselor, and staff member and you can find me all over camp doing a million different things. You can describe my job in the immortal words of Vanilla Ice – “if you’ve got a problem, yo, I’ll solve it.” My favorite things at camp are having dance parties, getting to know all of you, and stealing cookies from the kitchen (shhh… don’t tell anyone!). Outside of camp, I’m a Digital Strategist with a PR firm and live in Maine with my husband, our 4 sons, and 2 big dopey dogs. Winter is my favorite season so you’ll find us out in the woods or on the beach even when it’s 10 degrees outside!

Activities Director

Hi! I’m Grace Reilly, the Activities Director for summer 2019. I am so excited to come back for my 8th summer at CJDA and to be working on staff. Outside of camp, I am finishing up my third year of teaching middle school science out in Denver, Colorado. In my free time, I love to play ultimate frisbee, go hiking, and play board games and I cannot wait to share these interests at camp. As a former camp lifeguard, the waterfront will always be a special place, but I am looking forward to spending more time on the field, at the archery range, and in the arts and craft studio this summer as I help organize and plan our camp activities. I cannot wait for all of the fun to start this summer!

Water Front Director

Hi! I’m Laura; I’m 21 years old from a small coastal village in Devon, South West England. I am in my final year at The University of Manchester and will complete my Master’s Degree in Chemistry. I spent my childhood swimming, kayaking, windsurfing and wakeboarding in the River Exe and my teenage years working on a passenger boat. It was these interests that led me to spending 2017 and 2018 as a Ski Boat Driver at CJDA. I have had the best two summers! I am SO excited to be Waterfront Director this year, and am looking forward to the challenges this brings, ensuring everyone has a safe and fun time on our beautiful waterfront! There really is no place like camp, and I am counting down the days until I can get back to my second home in the Adirondacks!

Horseback Riding Director

Hello, my name is Irina Zakharzhevskaia; I’m from Saint-Petersburg, Russia. I was a camper at CJDA for 4 years, a senior counselor for 1 year, and this will be my 2nd year as a Horseback Riding Director. CJDA is a special place…. you can be yourself, explore yourself, and become a better version of yourself. I love working with kids, and of course horses. It is so great to be part of the world where the relationship between these big, fantastic animals and children nurtures and blossoms. In addition, I enjoy working on different healthy habits, like exercises, food and other issues of lifestyle; and being a health coach. In real life, I work as a lawyer, raise three adorable daughters, who are also excited to come back to CJDA!

Operations Director

Hi everyone! My name is Maria Salas, and I am from Caracas Venezuela. This will be my 15th summer at camp! I was a camper for 8 years, a CIT (Counselor-In-Training) for 2 years, a counselor for 2 more years, and then I had the opportunity to join Sandy and Randy on their Staff as Program Director for 2 years! I am currently in college studying Business Administration and hoping to get my Masters in Business Analytics! Throughout the years, CJDA has given me the opportunity to grow as a person and as a leader. At camp, you have the support of your friends and counselors who will make you realize your potential. CJDA has given me my best friends and my mentors and I am so grateful to call this place my second home. Cannot wait to see everyone at some point this summer! GO LES!

Special Events Coordinator

Hey! My name is Katie and this will be my 13th summer at camp (I’ve only missed one summer since my first year in 2006) so it’s safe to say I love CJDA! Right now I’m studying abroad in Lisbon, Portugal, and back at home I’m a junior at Bates College studying biology with the hopes of becoming a veterinarian! I’m very busy as a pre-vet student, but working harder during the year is totally worth it to have some time at camp!! Since I first got to camp I have absolutely loved CJDA for so many reasons. Aside from the amazing people and experiences, what I love most about camp is that every morning you get to wake up and think “what can we do to have the most fun today?”. I’m so excited to spend the summer with the AMAZING counselors and staff we have this year and to make my 13th summer the best one yet!


Hi everyone, my name is Blanca. I’m 20 and from Madrid, Spain!! I’m currently studying a dual degree in Business and International Relations. This will be my 4th summer at camp. My first year was as a CIT (Counselor-In-Training) and the rest as a counselor. I’m super excited to be part of the staff group as Programmer and can’t wait to see everyone again! Camp is without a doubt my favorite place in the world. What makes it special is not only the traditions and S’mores (my faves!), but the people you get to spend your summer with! At camp, I’ve made friends who I know are going to be part of my life forever! Can’t wait to see everyone VERY soon!!!

Meet Our Staff


The Environment Is Safe and Nurturing

My 14 year old daughter will be a third year camper this summer and has loved every minute of the experience. The campers and counselors are friendly and caring. There are activities suited for everyone and the environment is safe and nurturing. We feel good knowing our daughter is enjoying the outdoors while also learning to become an independent and responsible young woman. Thank you Camp Jeanne d’Arc!

Hope P., Parent from NYC
Camp Jeanne d'Arc, summer camp for girls Adirondacks


We are happy to help and will respond within 24 hours.