Owners & Directors

Susie and Steve Baskin came to Camp Champions in 1995 and live at camp year round with their four children: twin boys Wiley and Liam (21), daughter Terrill (19), daughter Virginia (16) and basset hound Dodger. They are committed to making camp an extraordinary place to serve families.

Read our camp’s history


Steve is the executive director of the boys’ side of camp. That means that he gets to spend time with great campers and counselors during the summer and avoid growing up.

Steve is a lifelong camper. He first attended camp when he was 8 and he continued for 11 years. In his years as a camper and a counselor, he discovered the power of the camp experience to develop confidence, social skills and joy.

He even wrote about camp in his college applications as one of the defining experiences of his life. After graduating with honors from Davidson College, he got off the camp track for a few years during which he was an investment banker with Goldman Sachs in New York and Simmons & Company in Houston. He then went to Harvard Business School, where he decided to pursue his true passion: summer camp. He and Susie have been full-time camp owners since 1993. Steve is lucky to have the pleasure of partnering with his wife (and best friend).

Steve has been featured in articles in the Wall Street Journal, American Way magazine, the Houston Chronicle and the Austin-American Statesman. He has written for Psychology Today on youth development, education and parenting. Steve chaired the Tri-State Camp Conference (the largest camp conference in the world) from 2008-2010. In 2009, he received the National Service Award from the American Camp Association(ACA). In 2010, he was appointed Treasurer of the ACA and serves on its Executive Committee.

In 2013, Steve was asked to speak at his 20th Harvard reunion as an expert on parenting.

Steve Sir speaks to his fellow Harvard graduates in June 2013.

Watch Steve’s Harvard Talk: Play ►


Susie is the camp mom and the director of the girls’ side. She adores her many “children” at camp.

Susie loves talking with camper parents all year long and helping them with any concerns, including parental separation anxiety (camp can be hard on first time parents). In addition to being a parent liaison at camp, she also directs our camp health center.

Susie did not attend camp as a child or young woman, but has become a powerful fan of the camp experience as she watched its positive effect on her own children.

In her past life, Susie was a family and adolescent counselor at a hospital in Wellesley, MA and later became a manager at a Boston hospital. She attended University of Michigan undergrad and Northwestern University for graduate school.

In 2014, the Texas Commissioner of Education appointed Susie as the sole camp representative to the Texas Expanded Learning Opportunities (ELO) Council.

Susie is a die hard Bostonian and thought she’d live there forever until she met Steve and he convinced her to move to Texas. She is very happy that he did as she could never envision a better place to live than right in the middle of camp on the beautiful shores of Lake LBJ.

Say hello to our senior staff

Leah Mesches

Leah Ma'am loves talking camp! Feel free to email her at lmesches@campchampions.comLeah Ma'am loves talking camp! Feel free to email her at

Girl’s Camp Director, Leah Mesches, hails from Westfield, NJ. She graduated from Northeastern University with a Business degree, but ultimately found the world of summer camp to be more appealing than a desk job in NYC. Before coming to Champions in 2009, she was assistant director of one of Pennsylvania’s largest residential camps in the Pocono Mountains. She enjoys living in Austin with her husband, Robbie, daughter, Lola, and their dog, Lucy and spending her summers at camp. Leah Ma’am has been involved in the American Camp Association and served on the EPIC committee which promotes and supports developing camp professionals. When not practicing yoga, checking out live music, or roaming the outdoors, Leah is learning the correct usage of “y’all” (for a Yankee).

Kate Hutson

Thinking about sending your kid to camp? Want to talk to the bubbliest person there is? Contact Kate Ma'am at khutson@campchampions.comThinking about sending your kid to camp? Want to talk to the bubbliest person there is? Contact Kate Ma'am at

Kate Hutson, Director of New Campers, was born and raised in Houston, Texas and started attending Camp Champions at the age of 8. After 10 years as a CC camper, Kate attended Texas A&M University, where she earned her degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and Teaching. Upon graduation, Kate taught 4th grade English and Social Studies through Teach For America in Louisiana. In 2015, she came back to her Texas roots to serve as the Director of New Campers here at Camp Champions, a role that she helped design. Kate loves meeting our first-time families and welcoming them into our wonderful camp community! This will be her 20th summer at Camp Champions. When she’s not at camp, Kate enjoys hiking, eating tacos, traveling, and spending time with her two tabby cats.

Lizzy Breen

Lizzy Ma'am is the glue of camp! She's available at lbreen@campchampions.comLizzy Ma'am is the glue of camp! She's available at

Our Office Manager, Lizzy Breen, grew up in Georgetown, TX. She has been a sleep away camper, and held various leadership positions ranging from counselor to chair in Fish Camp during her time at A&M. She graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Health, as well as a Master’s of Science in Recreation, Park, & Tourism Sciences with an emphasis in Youth Development. Lizzy Ma’am’s favorite thing about Camp Champions is the special and unique environment that we create, everyone can be their best selves! When Lizzy Ma’am is not in the camp office, she loves to read, enjoy the outdoors, and roam around camp with her dog Harlow Ma’am. Stop by the camp office to give Harlow Ma’am a high-five!

We have a Summer Leadership Team too!