Our Team

Karen Salvatore Founder, Camp Director, Communications & Social Skills Instructor

Having earned a BS in Business Administration with a major in Communication from Babson College, Karen is a social entrepreneur who figures out how to solve large social problems on the local level in a cost effective way.

Justine St. Jacques Administrative Assistant

Justine St. Jacques, Administrative Assistant, holds a BS in Health and Wellness from URI. She has been practicing yoga since the age of 16 and was certified as a yoga instructor in 2012. Passionate about all aspects of well being, Justine is pursuing a Masters degree in acupuncture and oriental medicine at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science in Worcester MA.

Justin Ketner Chef

Chef Justin currently works for the Management 410 Company as the private chef at a URI academic and social residence hall. In this position he must adapt to the food requirements of 40 students, accommodating for a myriad of dietary trends and special needs including allergies, non-meat, and religious preferences. He grew up with parents who helped start the first health food coop in RI and loves sharing his knowledge of the history of food with campers.

Sandra Severinkangas Yoga Instructor

University of Sacred Heart, Puerto Rico, BA in Clinical Psychology, Summa Cum Laude, fluent in Spanish, English, and Finnish, Registered Yoga Teacher in Yoga Alliance (E-RYT-200), certified as an Itsy Bitsy Yoga® Facilitator, completed the Semillas de Luz (Seeds of Light) Children's Yoga Teacher training, plus a 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training Certification from Samadhi Yoga Institute in San Juan, Puerto Rico, a Registered YogaFaith Teacher (R-YFT), and the creator and principal facilitator of Socceroga, a yoga program for soccer players. This mom of two tweens has practiced yoga for sixteen years.

Brian Mello Yoga Instructor

Brian Mello is a certified Hatha Yoga Instructor, certified Meditation instructor and certified Sound Healer. As a flamenco and Spanish classical guitarist, he has performed for over 30 years as a soloist and guitarist with Boston's "El Arte Flamenco", A Spanish dance troupe with musicians and dancers. Combining his passion for yoga and music, he teaches "Sound Therapy Yoga" A yoga class described as a "Spiritual Journey", of sounds, meditation, breathing exercises, stretching and poses. Brian currently teaches at the YMCA in Attleboro and at various locations throughout MA and RI.

Nancy Seale

Nancy Seale is a Branch Manager at Rhode Island Credit Union and the mother of one son. She has worked at the Credit Union for over 30 years and is passionate about Financial Literacy and preparing children for the future. Nancy has taught financial literacy to campers for years, and currently serves on the Food and Truth Board of Directors.

Norman J. Leclair Advisor, Chef, Author

Former proprietor of Red Rooster Tavern, North Kingstown, RI, and author of Culinary Expressions, Seafood Expressions, and Chicken Expressions, Normand retired from teaching at Fit2cook4Kids camps when he reached the tender age of 80. We could not bear to see him go, so he joined the board of directors and is our adviser to our aspiring TV chefs. We'd be hard pressed to find a chef more passionate about his craft and so willing to share his talent!

Meredith Cotta Consultant/Marketing

BA in Liberal Arts from Providence College, Magna Cum Laude. While attending PC, Meredith took courses at RISD in graphic design. She is a 3rd Degree Black Belt & Certified Instructor in the Cheezic Tang Soo Do Federation of Karate. Previously a substitute teacher in the Foster/Situate public school system, Meredith is the mother of two homeschooled teenagers.

Shelly Fish Compliance Officer

Shelly Fish is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She’s a Compliance Officer, USAF Staff Sergeant in Public Health, and the mother of four sons, ages 1-16 years.

Kinnan Dowie Counselor in Training (CIT), 2015-2017

Kinnan Dowie, attended Fit2cook4Kids three years and decided to enter the healthy lunch contest initiated First Lady, Michelle Obama. He won for RI and went to the Kids State Dinner at the White House where he met Mrs. Obama and President Obama. He then applied to Chopped Junior on the Food Network and made it to the second round.

Elisa Hernandez Counselor in Training (CIT)

Elisa Hernandez attended Fit2Cook4Kids for three years and then became a CIT.  She loves coming up with new dish ideas and telling stories. She excels in math, plays clarinet, and keeps busy teaching herself guitar and making art.

Arianna Dumas Counselor in Training (CIT)

Arianna Dumas enjoys cooking and making small meals for family and friends.  She became a CIT after attending Fit2cook for three years.   She loves ice skating, photography, softball, and has enjoyed being a Girl Scout for five years.

Brandon Richard Counselor in Training (CIT)

Brandon Richard likes to make breakfast and often does on weekends. He likes experimenting to come up with great flavors. He's an adventurous eater having tried frog legs and alligator which was in a fritter with a tropical mango salsa. He's been playing baseball as a catcher for 7 years. After 3 years as a camper he became a CIT.

Phoebe Ferguson Counselor in Training (CIT)

Phoebe Ferguson has loved cooking and baking since before she can remember and wants to give campers the same exciting experience she’s had. She’ll use everything she learned as a camper when she applies to college to study Culinary Arts.

Grace Benedict Counselor in Training (CIT)

Oriana Ramirez Counselor in Training (CIT)

Oriana has attended Fit2cook4kids for the past 6 years, making her the most senior camper. Her favorite event is the Pressure Cooker competition, which she had a hand in developing. Oriana likes to play the piano and has been studying it for many years. Her ambition is to attend Johnson and Wales University to study culinary arts, and to ultimately open and run her own restaurant.

Avery Walker Counselor in Training (CIT)

Avery Walker attended two camps in 2018. She loves cooking, writing, drumming, martial arts, and cats. She is a pescatarean and doesn’t eat meat, only fish, shrimp, and scallops. She enjoys reading, mostly the Warriors Cats series, learning new languages and is very interested in the colors of eyes which are said to be the window to the soul.

Braden Hutchins Counselor in Training (CIT)

Laura Pisano Counselor in Training (CIT)

Olivia Johnson Counselor in Training (CIT)

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