Nicholas Betancourt


Nico has worked as in a variety of roles over the past six years and at different Camp Quest locations., His work in curricula has been featured by the National CQ Network. He has a background in education, which he uses to teach and motivate others as a coach, author, and retail associate. He is dedicated to strengthening CQSM to ensure a transformative camp experience for many more years of campers. 


Kristi Cummings


Kristi has been a Camp Quest parent since 2012 and joined the CQ Smoky Mountains board in 2020. In her professional life, she's an IT project manager and Certified Business Analysis Professional. She's an Air Force veteran and used her GI Bill benefits to attend culinary school. Her hobbies are cooking, hiking the Smokies, and officiating secular weddings as a Humanist Celebrant.
Kristi's favorite freethinker is her Dad, a voracious reader and lifelong learner who introduced her to the writings of Robert A. Heinlein.

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Timothy Gerla


Tim joined Camp Quest Smoky Mountains in 2016 as a cabin counselor. He lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with his dogs and partner, and enjoys exploring nature, building things, and occasionally playing the piano. Before he moved to Chapel Hill, he served on the board of SkeptiCal, the Northern California Conference on Science and Skepticism.


Val Keithly

Val first attended CQSM in 2006 and has since attended 23 Camp Quest sessions nationwide. He is in trade school and works as a barista.  In his spare time, he works with  Odyssey of the Mind teams. Val an LGBTQIA rights advocate and a speaker on transgender policies and health care.  He  looks forward to making CQSM as inclusive a space as possible for all genders and sexualities.

Ian Plouffe

Assistant Camp Director

Ian started attending CQSM in 2012 as a camper. After aging out they worked at other camps around the country and came back to CQSM as a counselor. Now they serve as Assistant Camp Director. Ian attends Florida State University where they are working on their B.A. in Philosophy and Religion. In their free time Ian teaches yoga, studies bodywork, and spends time in nature.  

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Caroline Martin

Caroline started her Camp Quest adventure in 2009. She has held a variety of roles including Camp Director. Caroline calls Ohio home and has attended CQ Ohio several times. Caroline is dedicated to the values of Camp Quest and has served on the national board of directors and CQSM board for several years. She is pursuing a Master’s in Social Work and loves spending time with her dog and two cats. Her favorite camp activity is the night hike.

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Kelli Bateman

Kelli Bateman has been involved with CQSM as a parent since 2013.  Both Bateman kids say Camp Quest is their favorite thing to do in the summer!  Kelli teaches Calculus at a STEM high school in Florida, and loves spending her weekends at the beach. 


Meredith Porter

Camp Director, ex officio member

Meredith has been a member of the CQSM community since 2012 and took over as Camp Director in August 2019. By day, she works in international development. She served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Albania, where she adopted her cat, Kajsi.  In her spare time, Meredith enjoys camping, traveling, gardening, and making up moderately successful recipes.