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The Team

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Jocelyn Palm

President and Founder

Jocelyn’s lifelong commitment to leadership development, environmental education and social service is the catalyst behind the Near North Enviro-Education Centre. As the owner and Director of Glen Bernard Camp since 1977, Jocelyn has provided opportunities for generations of leaders to flourish. With 250 campers in each of three summer sessions and a staff of more than 100, almost all of whom are former campers, the GBC community includes generations of alumni connected and committed to ideals which foster independence and group belonging, coupled with environmental education. GBC also hosts co-ed school and adult groups and is a registered private school offering high-school credits. Jocelyn’s vision is to share GBC’s mandate into the community with the establishment of the NNEEC.

Jocelyn’s numerous philanthropic and community related endeavours were recognized with her appointment to the Order of Canada on December 30, 2012. Her Social Service work includes contributions to women’s health, youth development and aquatic lifesaving. She has been involved with Women’s College Hospital for over 25 years and was part of a group that worked to maintain the hospital as an independent institution. As event & project coordinator she has provided leadership and support to numerous events and initiatives at the hospital. Jocelyn was the first national executive director of the Lifesaving Society, a position she held for 15 years. The Jocelyn Palm Cup has been established as an annual award to recognize her outstanding contributions to the National Lifeguard Service. She is the former president of the Ontario Camps Association, the Canadian Camping Association and the Professional Society of Camp Directors. She has also lent expertise to a number of organizations including Think First Canada and the Immigrant Women’s Health Centre. Most recently, Jocelyn is a founding member and current treasurer of Kids in Camp, a registered charity that provides financial assistance for families to send kids to camp.

The founding of the NNEEC is rooted in a commitment to the development of leaders and practices pertaining to environmental and economic sustainability. Jocelyn is a champion for the social and economic objectives of rural communities and is committed to their success for generations to come.


Jim Schmidt

Vice President

As Facility Manager at Glen Bernard Camp for more than 35 years, Jim has overseen the stewardship and development of a property featuring 700 acres of forest and a kilometer of shoreline, as well as dozens of buildings. The Camp has become a model of environmental education and features solar power, composting toilets and energy efficient lighting. The Living Lightly Lab allows students to interact and learn about sustainable technologies. This entire infrastructure, the buildings with their unique energy saving features, as well as the land itself, with its miles of trails, is overseen and looked after by Jim and his maintenance team. This team consists of young people, hired for the summer and given a unique opportunity to learn and be mentored by Jim, who takes particular pride in those who have gone on to education and employment in environmental fields. Under Jim’s management, the camp has significantly reduced its use of water. The facilities and routines are tailored to not only meet low waste and energy consumption goals, but also to teach campers, students and adults to do the same.

Jim was born and raised on a farm in the Sundridge area. Stone masonry was among the skills that Jim learned from his father and the family farm and surrounding wilderness was where Jim began his appreciation and connection with the natural world. Jim and his family live on a waterfront property and for over 10 years he has been a Director with the Lake Bernard Property Owner’s Association, where he serves as the Lake Steward for Lake Bernard. For 21 years Jim has been a member of the Sundridge-Strong Volunteer Fire Department, first as a fire fighter, then as Captain, and more recently as Deputy Fire Chief and Chief Training Officer. Here again Jim brings leadership in organizing, mentoring and teaching.


Bob Atwell



Harry Schlange



Kathryn MacLean



Sue Eckersley


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