Strong River Camp



Current Directors:

Sarah Dabney Gillespie, daughter of Strong River Camp & Farm Founder Tay Gillespie, was a camper in 1973 – the opening year of Strong River. She was a CIT, Jr. Counselor and Counselor before moving into the administrative side of camp.

Sarah Dabney enjoyed a post-graduate year of high school in England before earning a BA from Rhodes College in Memphis, TN. She lived and worked for brief stays in Mackinac Island, Michigan, New Zealand, Santa Fe, New Mexico and Florence, Italy but always managed to make it home for camp in the summer.

Sarah Dabney currently lives at Strong River Farm with her parents Tay and “Dr. Guy” Gillespie and presides over Strong River Camp & Farm.


Steve Clements first came to Strong River as a camper in 1974. He also was a CIT, Jr. Counselor and Counselor for many summers and a close friend of Tay’s. He introduced Strong River to Ropes Adventure Courses and was our first Ropes Director before he went back to his first love of Canoeing.

Steve earned a BS from Mississippi State University and became a Soccer Coach first in Meridian, Mississippi and then in Tyler, Texas. He has taken his TJC team to the NJCAA Division 1 Men’s National Soccer Tournament 8 times and emerged as Number 1 in the country 5 times since 2009. He was inducted in the Men’s Soccer Coaches Hall of Fame in 2009 and has been selected National Coach of the Year on 5 separate occasions. His overall record as a coach is 435-73-19.

Steve currently serves as Camp Director and manages the camp counselors and the camp program. Campers know him as the one who can tell them when to ring the bell and the driver of the “biscuit-mobile”. Most importantly, Steve loves camp!