Our Founder

Jill Bio Pic_Smaller2Jill Rose, the co-founder of Camp It Up!, has been working in various camp settings since age thirteen. As a Counselor, Music Specialist, Program Director, Director, Staff Trainer and Consultant, she has become familiar with every aspect of camp management (though she still can’t snake a toilet). She co-founded Camp It Up! twenty-seven years ago and has been the camp’s director since that time. She’s a co-founder of Camps In Common, a non-profit corporation that manages Feather River Camp for the City of Oakland, California.

Her work with Camp It Up! is both a culmination and manifestation of her commitment to non-urban camps as a source for individual, familial and communal healing and empowerment. As director of Camp It Up!, Ms. Rose was able to experience the thrill and gratification of knowing that it is possible to make real and positive changes in people’s lives. Whether it has been training teenagers to work with young children, enabling an individual to attend and enjoy a week’s camping experience with his or her family for the first time, or encouraging a staff member to take on a new and challenging role, her work has been a source of challenge and healing, and has compelled her to continue reaching out for other opportunities that “make a difference.” As a Music teacher in an Oakland public school, songwriter, community organizer and event producer, Jill has been fortunate to find many such opportunities in her life. Jill retired in December 2016 from being Director of Camp It Up. She now gets to experience Camp It Up from the perspective of a camper.

Ms. Rose has been a Bay Area resident since 1967 and lives in Oakland, California. When time and money allow, she loves to travel; and when only time is available, she can be found playing piano and singing with friends, spending time with her family or playing a decidedly uncompetitive game of Scrabble.

Our Executive Director
Mary Beth King, our new Executive Director comes to us eager to bring her skills and passion for camp and continue the magic of Camp It Up! She looks forward creating more camper scholarships to welcome and build the diversity of our LGBTQ community.  

Mary Beth has been working in various camp settings since she was in middle school. As she will tell you, “I LOVE CAMP!” She has worked in various positions increasing in responsibility, including Camp Director, with Girl Scouts of America for many years. She has also been the program coordinator of a Camp called Camp Camp, a summer camp for LGBTQ Adults that takes place in Maine.

Mary Beth grew up on Ohio, and is currently living in South Carolina with her wife and kitties.  When she is not running some camp, you can find her either at Disneyland or an Indigo Girls concert.

A note from Mary Beth: I’m so excited to get to know all of you as I join the Camp It Up! family. I grew up going to camp and then made a career working at camp. For me, camp isn’t just a place, it’s a feeling. I felt that camp magic this past summer as I met some of you for the first time. Jill Rose has created an amazing space for us to have community. I am looking forward to celebrating old camp traditions and creating new ones.


Camp Staff

good staff picOur amazing Camp It Up! staff includes a year-round administrative team (Web site, Marketing, Registration) and our program staff. We have an administration team that coordinates the registration process prior to camp (a humungous task!) and they keep us all organized at camp.

In addition to our administrative staff, our incredible program staff, which now number approximately 60 each summer session, has been an integral part of the camper community. We estimate that some 250 staff members have shared their talents with us over the years. Our very popular Counselor-in-Training (CIT) program is run for approximately 10 teenagers each summer. Most of our staff goes through the counseling development cycle which includes starting as a CIT, becoming a Junior Counselor and then a Senior Counselor or Specialist. Some have gone on to administrative positions at Camp It Up! and now help to direct the camp. Some have built careers working with children, inspired by their Camp It Up! experience. As many of “our kids” go off to college (many returning each year to work as staff), they write in their college essays that Camp It Up! is the one thing that has most shaped their view of family and community.