CTB WA co-founders: Deb Kennedy and Bob Partlow
"You have never lived until
you have done something
for someone who can
never repay you".
Meet our executive board
Our executive board and leadership provide the dedication, vision and spirit that helps Camp To Belong Washington thrive. Their enthusiasm and willingness to dedicate their talents, plus hundreds of volunteer hours, to fulfilling Camp To Belong's mission means that many siblings separated by foster care now have opportunities to come together for visits.
Co-founder and director
Deb and her husband Dave Kennedy, a minister, lead by example. They are the parents of eight children, including two sibling groups adopted through foster care. For 11 years, Deb has poured her her time and passion for children in care into founding and serving as director of Washington's chapter of Camp To Belong International. She often represents Camp To Belong Washington before groups and organizations. She is a recipient of the Foster Parents Association of Washington's Luminary Award for her contribution to the welfare of Washington children in care.
Co-founder and board member
Bob is an amazing champion for children and a valued member of leadership team and board, where he serves as secretary. He was instrumental in founding a Camp To Belong Washington chapter in our state while he was employed by Washington Children's Administration, now the Department of Children, Youth and Families. He served with the State for 11 before retiring. Previously, he was a political and investigative reporter for 27 years. He made the career change following several years of foster-parenting with his wife Deanna. They are parents to five, including one adopted child. Bob continues to volunteer with CTB WA and advocate for foster children. While at camp, Bob is a jack of all trades, and during the Christmas season, does his other favorite work, serving as a Santa at numerous holiday celebrations in Western Washington.
David, known at camp as B.A., has been a part of the Camp To Belong Washington team since 2010. He is not only a member of our Leadership Team, but also serves as president of CTB WA's board. As a lead counselor during camp, B.A. is known for his ability to encourage and mentor the "tough boys" and to belt out goofy camp songs at any time. He is the proud father of daughter Kammarie, and when he is not being a camp superhero, he is a water infrastructure specialist.
Rebekah Bauer joined the Camp To Belong Washington team as an administrative assistant when she was a senior in high school. It didn't take long for her to fall in love with the camp's mission and the kids she worked with. Besides serving on the leadership team, she is now in charge of CTB WA's inaugural Camp Gifford in Eastern Washington and other Eastern Washington events, and also serves as lead counselor at the Western Washington camp. For much of the year, Rebekah is a gifted kindergarten teacher with a certification in special education. When she is not speaking about the CTB WA mission before various groups or teaching, she enjoys running and traveling the world!
Deanna Partlow, who serves on CTB WA's board and leadership team, and her husband Bob are parents of five, including one adopted child, grandparents and former foster parents, While she considers parenting the best job ever, she is a retired journalist and worked for many years as a media relations professional and journalism teacher at a college. She still works as a writer and editor and as Mrs. Claus during the holidays. Her passion is bettering the lives of children, especially those in foster care.
Lena Mitchel became a volunteer in 2009 and joined the CTB WA executive board in 2010. A former foster parent and an advocate for youth in care, Lena is the mother of five, two of whom were adopted from foster care. She became active in Camp To Belong Washington after adopting a child who is separated from his siblings. She serves as board treasurer and is active in fundraising.
Rachele Raj joined the Camp To Belong Washington executive board in 2018 after several years of sending her adopted kids to camp to be with their separated siblings. She is the mom of two biological children -- including a new baby -- and three children adopted from foster care. Besides helping guide Camp To Belong, Rachele is a college student and chief business development officer at Seattle Veterinary Outreach.