Courtney Pierce-Philippou represents the 4th Generation of the Pierce family to own and direct Pierce Country Day Camp, America’s first Day Camp, alongside her Cousin Will Pierce.
Pierce Day Camp was established in 1918, serving children from the North Shore of Long Island, Queens, Brooklyn, and Manhattan. This past summer was the 105th consecutive summer season.
After graduating from The Berkshire School in 2002, a prestigious co-ed boarding school in Sheffield, Mass., Courtney went on to pursue a double major in child psychology and speech pathology at Hofstra University.
After graduating college, Courtney spent her first 10 years in the family business preparing to follow in her father’s footsteps.
Pierce Country Day Camp was established in 1918 by Forrester “Pop” Pierce, Courtney’s great Grandfather. Pop was a 25-year-old physical education teacher and coach who envisioned a unique summer program for children.
He imagined a safe place to broaden children’s horizons and boost self-esteem; an extraordinary environment where children can just be kids. Pop created an environment that promoted freedom, self-expression, and positive physical, social, and emotional development.
Pierce Country Day Camp became a model followed by camps across America. Pierce remains a nationally recognized industry leader continually raising the bar for what day camp can be. Pierce promotes mutual respect, sportsmanship, and team building.
Campers grow in self-confidence within the dynamic program which emphasizes personal growth through an innovative curriculum offered by a very talented staff.
In addition to Pierce Day Camp, Pierce-Philippou along with an active team of Pierce family members operate Pierce Country Day School, Pierce Camp Birchmont, and Pierce Coach Lines.
Courtney is the past President of Long Island Camps and Private Schools, a professional association of summer day camps, private schools and camp directors who are dedicated to the highest quality summer camp experience.
LICAPS consists of 26 member camps and private schools that have a long and rich history of providing children with a summer experience that is not only fun but also teaches valuable life and social skills for a successful future.
Today, Courtney is busy managing a myriad of administrative responsibilities throughout the organization including staff recruitment, retention and professional development. Curriculum development and program scheduling, transportation oversight, facility management and more… She also maintains the supervision of all the regulatory mandates of the state Department of Health, state DOT and the office of Child and Family Services, and Fire control.
Courtney is also an American Camp Association standards inspector. The ACA accreditation program assures that camps maintain a rigid program of safety and best practices related to all aspects of their day-to-day operations.
Currently, Courtney serves on the board of SCOPE, Summer Camp Opportunities Promote Education. SCOPE is an organization co-founded 30 years ago by her father Doug to offer underserved at-risk children by giving them the opportunity to attend not for profit ACA Accredited summer camps at no expense. SCOPE has provided thousands of camperships since its inception in the hope of offering the benefit of camp to some truly wonderful kids who otherwise would never have this opportunity!
The SCOPE board consists of 25 members of the business, legal, financial, and camp communities – all dedicated to SCOPE’s mission and the financial well-being and growth of the organization.
Pierce was honored in April 2022 as SCOPE’s Philanthropic Camp of the Year, being recognized in NYC with over 500 peers and camp leaders in attendance.
Courtney and her husband Peter currently reside at Pierce Country Day Camp – School and have three sons: Johnny 10, Charlie 7 and Thomas 5.