meet our year-round staff!


Maggie Renken, AICL Executive Director: Since February 2018, Maggie has served as AICL’s inaugural Executive Director. She has a general passion for summer camps, for unique ways to foster learning, and for the Blue Ridge mountains. She fell in love with AICL when her oldest daughter first attended camp in 2016. Maggie lives just south of Atlanta on a small hobby farm with her family and is an Associate Professor in the Department of Learning Sciences at Georgia State University.


Chad Watson, Summer Enrichment Camp & Base Camp Co-Director: Chad has been a part of camp for a long time- first as a camper, then as staff. He has filled just about every role at camp at one time or another. He co-directed from 2002 to 2005, then stepped back into the job in 2011. He lives in The Woodlands, Texas, where he teaches Pre-Calculus and Statistics to high school students.


 Jessica Young, Summer Enrichment Camp Co-Director:  Jessica has also been a part of camp much of her life, working in a variety of roles from counselor to camp cook before becoming Co-Director in 2012. She and Chad have overseen the rapid expansion of camp and AICL’s move from Warren Wilson College to Mars Hill University. She lives with her family in Tennessee and looks forward to a future when AICL runs year-round.


Tara Watson, Administrator/ The Summit & Base Camp Co-Director : Tara takes care of registration, outreach, and any administrative support needed by Co-Directors and the Board of Trustees. Before becoming Administrator in 2017, she had worked for AICL as both a counselor and instructor. When not doing camp work, she is a clinical Social Worker with a private therapy practice in Nashville, Tennessee.


Wes Cheek, The Summit Co-Director: Wes Cheek is a Ph.D. candidate in the City, Culture, and Community program at Tulane University. He is originally from Destin, Florida. He has occupied a number of roles at AICL over the past 25+ years, from camper, to counselor, to co-director.

Margaret Hoff, Bookkeeper: Margaret lives in Athens, Ohio and was AICL's Administrator for 8 years, beginning in 2010.  She has now moved solely into her role as Bookkeeper and is very excited to spend more time with AICL's financial side.  Margaret also works a few hours a week with other non-profits in her area and lives on a working Flower Farm with her husband, daughter, and a few fun animals. 

we love our teachers and counselors, too!