Leadership & Staff

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Our energetic and experienced staff make camp rewarding for everyone.

Deb Erdmann

Camp Voyageur has been owned and operated by the Erdmann family since 1951. Brother and sister team John and Deb Erdmann direct camp and want to help you decide if Camp Voyageur is a good fit for you or your son. Contact them with questions or to discuss your summer camp options.

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John Erdmann


Since the summer of 1984, John Erdmann has continued the family tradition founded in 1951. “Kids grow in ways not possible at home during each summer in the great Northwoods.” John spent two years in the Peace Corps in Venezuela after graduating from DePauw University. He draws on work experience in higher education and the corporate and business worlds for managing the family’s boys camp. John’s first of nine grandchildren became a Voyageur camper in 2017. Connect with him on Facebook.

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Deb Erdmann, M.S.Ed.

Camp Manager

Deb Erdmann has spent nearly every summer here since she was 3 months old. She puts her Experiential Education degree to good use daily at Voyageur. “Camp provides an opportunity to affect people in a special way. Camp is my life work.” Deb manages communication with families, meals and logistics. She and her husband Jeff take care of camp in the off-season. Contact Deb for all your camp needs.

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Alex Kvanli, M.S.Ed.

Assistant Director

Alex is our year-round assistant director, blog editor, and fitness guru. He is a teacher with a Masters in Experiential Education, an avid world traveler, and enthusiast for all things outdoors. In the offseason he lives in SE Minnesota with his German wife Zar and son Finn. Alex’s favorite activity at Camp is catching bass on wacky worms.

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Bill Burgman

Program Director

Bill first worked as the tennis instructor here in 1972. He coordinates Camp staff for the morning, afternoon and evening programs. Bill taught high school, coached college tennis, and administered fitness and wellness centers.

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Vicky Erdmann Burgman


A retired elementary teacher, Vicky coordinates supply runs and assisting with meals. She is essential in keeping camp running smooth from behind the scenes.

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Charlie Erdmann

Senior Counselor

Charlie was born in Ely and helps out with camp year round. Each year he helps edit and lay out the Paddle Post newspaper. You can find him supervising camp sports, skiing, or sailing and helping with camp media projects.

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Kevin O’Kane

Aquatics Director

Swimmer by day, aviator by night, CV alum Kevin was a camper in the 60s and 70s and a counselor in ‘74. Kevin’s wife, Joan, who he married in 1974, also helps around camp each summer.

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Harrison Pratt

Trip Director

Harrison, a seasoned trip leader and valued member of the CV Staff, brings a wealth of experience to his role as Trip Director at Camp Voyageur. With a recent degree in history from Hanover College, he combines his passion for exploration with a deep understanding of the past. Post-summer, he plans to embark on his own travels, eager to explore new destinations and cultures.

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Kevin Marin Fuentes


Kevin is from Oaxaca, Mexico and is finishing up his thesis to become a marine biologist. He loves the sea, nature, and adventure. This is his second year as a counselor and he looks forward to cooking on the trail and further exploration of the Great Northwoods.

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Elena Richardson


Elena is a Registered Nurse from Zionsville, Indiana. She has worked in pediatrics in Indianapolis, Indiana and Albuquerque, New Mexico. She loves hiking, mountain biking, and skiing and is so excited for the summer!

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Davis Bain

Senior Counselor

Davis is an experienced trip guide passionate about the outdoors, drawing from his rich background as a former Boy Scout and a Voyageur Outward Bound graduate. With two years of CV counseling experience, Davis excels in leadership and ensuring a safe, enjoyable journey for all. A Mechanical Engineer by training, he brings a unique problem-solving skill set to every adventure in camp and on the water.

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Ben Kerstetter


Ben has been with CV since 2018 and is a first-year counselor. He’s from Chicago and just finished his first year at Cornell University studying Environmental Biology. He loves the outdoors and nature and is especially interested in birds and wildlife photography.

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Oscar Brown


Oscar is from Essex, England and he traveled the east coast of America before coming to Ely. He accidentally became a commercial fisherman, minnow dealer, and leech harvester because he misread an email. He looks forward to leading adventures in the wilderness!

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Jackson Murphy


Jackson is a mystery.

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Elliot Knock


Elliot is from England and loves traveling. He is here to get out of his comfort zone and experience a new way of fun and living. This is his first year as a counselor.

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Asher Taghizadeh


Asher Taghizadeh, a longtime camper and first-time counselor, is excited to carry on the magic of Camp. The Phoenix native enjoys wilderness trips and fishing. Outside of Camp he enjoys playing football and watching basketball. After the summer, Taghizadeh plans to attend UC Berkeley in the College of Letters and Sciences.

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Brayden Hoel-McKenzie


Brayden enjoys fishing, camping, and everything else outdoors. He’s a Colorado native but excited to spend his summer up north!

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Patrick O’Connell


Patrick has summered at camp for the last five years. He lives in Illinois where he will be attending the University of Chicago in the fall. In the meantime, he is looking forward to his first summer on staff.

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Liz Cody

Girls Counselor

Liz is a Nebraska native and veteran CV camper and Counselor. Liz has led many memorable CV trips since 2014 and is an ACA-certified Canoe and Kayak Instructor. Liz completed her undergraduate degree at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec. Her graduate research at the University of Nebraska has focused on Immunology and Microbiology, as well as Community Planning and Disaster Recovery. When not at Camp, Liz can be found leading canoe, kayak and biking trips in Southeast Nebraska and working with rural communities and agencies as a grant-writer, administrator and development specialist.

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Darryl Pratte

Craft Shop Counselor

Darryl comes to Camp Voyageur for the first time from St. Paul, MN. He is an architect by trade but loves dabbling in arts and crafts. He will teach in the craft shop for a few weeks this summer, building on the CV tradition.

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Dave Gossage


This is Daves third year as the camp cook. Dave learned to cook from former CV chef Bernard Herrman. Dave was a dog sled guide for 25 years at Wintergreen. He also worked for Outward Bound as well as Wilderness Inquiry.

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Paula Hill


This is Paula’s 11th year at CV. She is a local who loves the area and when we she saw camp, she wanted to be apart of a program that got kids into the wild. The CV spirit and the Erdmann family vision is contagious to Paula.

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Ned Yonkers


Ned will fly in from Boston for a couple weeks to help provide some “fresh legs” during our peak. A jack of all trades, Ned’s fluent in Chinese and an expert in the jaw harp. He has spent over half of his summers at CV.

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Aaron Torres

Senior Counselor

Torres has been with CV both as a camper and counselor since 2016. He lives in South Bend, IN and is currently in his third year at IU Bloomington at the Kelley School of Business.