Joanna has visited hundreds of camps throughout the United States, Switzerland, England, Canada and Russia.  Through her work with private, not-for-profit, day, resident, travel and academic programs, she has acquired a unique industry perspective of best business practices.  Through individualized strategies, she has enabled new camps to develop, assisted troubled businesses in their efforts to survive and has been instrumental in the continuing success of established operations.  Ongoing Focus Groups with children, teens and parents have enabled Joanna to understand their expectations of camp, what motivates families to inquire, purchase and most important, to return.

Industry Insights

Katie Duffy
Katie DuffyDirector of Camps
“We began working with Joanna in March 2017 to increase the quality and profitability of our Summer Day Camps and year-round Mini-Camps. It’s been an intense but rewarding association. We’ve doubled the number of Mini-Camps while summer enrollments have increased by 7% and retention continues to climb. Our parent Focus Groups confirm that our intentional approach is evident in the consistent quality of our program delivery.”
Patrick Soldan
Patrick SoldanChief Executive Officer
“Joanna will partner with you to look at your camp with fresh eyes, challenge your own assumptions and force you to think differently about your camp programs. Her recommendations have paid immediate dividends both in the recruitment of new campers and the retention of the ones we have. I would highly recommend!”
Matt Kaufman
Matt KaufmanDirector
“Joanna’s knowledge of the camp industry and how camps “really” work is astounding. During her visit to Ramaquois, she was able to make significant, concrete suggestions that we were able to implement almost immediately. As a result of her input and feedback, we now provide a better experience for our campers, parents and staff.”
Jen Segelken
Jen SegelkenVice President
Community Services
“Joanna’s expertise has helped us make informed, intentional decisions that have enabled us to elevate program design, customer service plus camper and parent experiences at Camp Speers YMCA. As a result, we’re expanding our partnership with Joanna to include both Camp Speers and our 18 Association Day Camps to benefit our camper families. Joanna’s high energy, yet pragmatic style helps us focus on our mission to serve more campers, better.”
Kate Lemay
Kate LemayExecutive Director
YMCA of Greater Boston Overnight Camps
“Our ongoing conferences with Joanna are critical because they set the date and time in the calendar when we are working ON our business rather than the routine of working IN our business. Pleasant Valley and North Woods are moving from good to GREAT and we have Joanna to thank for that. Her passion, knowledge, decisiveness, professionalism and experience have enabled us to make significant decisions regarding priorities and the use of financial resources.”
Lucia and Dave Thoensen
Lucia and Dave ThoensenOwners/Directors
“Even though we’re a quality operation, we’ll never become complacent. We’re constantly asking what we can do better. How can we push ourselves out of our comfort zones and objectively assess our program in critical ways to make it even stronger? Over the past four years, Joanna has facilitated that process and has helped us to question the status quo. With each challenge, we discover another and continue the effort to move every facet of our program to consistent excellence. The process hasn’t been easy, but it’s definitely been worth the effort!”
Tom Madeyski
Tom MadeyskiExecutive Director
“Astounding results, excellent counsel and a shift of our culture! That’s what Joanna Warren Smith has provided to our three resident camps.”
Ronny Schindler
Ronny SchindlerOwner
“Joanna’s razor sharp focus combined with extensive knowledge of the camp industry, gave us tremendous insight into our operation, now in its 25th year. Her pragmatic approach to assessing each and every operational area led us to improvements across the board, but none so profound as her quality control initiative which ensures that we deliver the same level of excellence at each one of our five sites. Joanna’s work opens minds and produces self-sustaining and enduring results.”
Jean-Marc Juhel, Ph.D.
Jean-Marc Juhel, Ph.D.Headmaster
“Joanna quickly grasped the ‘big picture’ of our very competitive marketplace and catered to our specific needs. She told us that she would help us enhance all aspects of our camp operation. She delivered on that promise and more.”
Patrick Marchand
Patrick MarchandExecutive Director
“Joanna is greatly responsible for the success and turnaround of our camp. We now have a wait list 60 campers deep!”
Natalie King
Natalie KingExecutive Director
“Our camp was a sinking ship.
Joanna helped
bail us out!”
Elizabeth Staib-King
Elizabeth Staib-KingExecutive Director
“THANK YOU! THANK YOU! Because of you, our check-in day has significantly improved! The day is completely mapped out, campers are immediately engaged and parents are impressed! There is also less homesickness.”
Tom and Maria Horner
Tom and Maria HornerOwners/Directors
Catalina Island Camps
“Through our 8 Boot Camps over the years, Joanna has guided the development of CIC’s promotional style and focus. We now see our content and photos through a parent’s perspective which has turned out to be very different from our camp-colored lenses. Joanna challenged us to examine our practices carefully; she does not hold back when she sees an opportunity to improve. We pushed back from time to time, but have seen the results of her experience and focus group-driven suggestions. The benefits of working with Joanna are evident in our registrations, parent feedback and camper comments.”
Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant
Paul ‘Bear’ BryantExecutive Director/CEO
Camp Sloane YMCA
“Joanna’s on-site observation this summer was enlightening and a key benefit of the consultation. Her ‘fresh eyes’ on our product have resulted in some worthwhile changes in the delivery of our camp program. Because of Joanna we have a solid marketing plan and well-crafted messages.”
Christine Baskin
Christine BaskinOwner/Director
Balcones Springs Camp
“Within two hours of Joanna’s arriving at camp, she identified problem areas which we began working on immediately. Her objectivity and subsequent recommendations have helped move us to retention rates that are significantly higher than this time last year. Joanna is insightful, dynamic and wonderful to work with.”