A native of Hopkinsville, Kentucky, André (Dré) has been at Camp Lincoln now for 29 consecutive summers as a counselor, head counselor, associate director, and director. He is an alumnus of DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education in 1993. In 2002, he earned his Master of Arts Degree in Education Administration from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. Prior to joining the year-round staff team at camp, André taught 4th and 5th grade in the Advanced Program (AP) at Kerrick Elementary in Louisville, Kentucky. He is an active member of the American Camp Association (ACA) having served on its National Board of Director for 2 terms, its National Young Professionals Committee (now called EPIC) from its beginning and the Association of Independent Camp now known as CODA. In addition to the ACA, André completed 6 years of service on the DePauw University Alumni Association Board of Directors and was also a member of DePauw’s Board of Visitors. He is currently one of the Class Co-Chairs for his class at DePauw and tries to give back to the place that did so much for him whenever possible. André also remains active in the community by serving as a member of the Edina Noon Rotary Club in Edina, Minnesota, and is currently the Head Coach of the 21-Time Minnesota State Champion and 4-Time UCA National Champion Minnetonka High School Varsity Cheerleading Squad in Minnetonka, Minnesota. He is very passionate about making a difference in the lives of a camper and being a role model for all that he comes in contact with on a daily basis. Too, he is quite loyal to his faith, his family, his friends, and those that strive to be fair in all of their dealings with their peers.
Favorite Camp Activity: Horseback Riding and Tennis
Best Camp Memory: LT2 Program Closing Vespers Session…TRADITION!
Favorite Camp Meal: Anything vegetarian, high in protein, and, of course, salad bar.
Childhood Hobbies: Cheerleading/Gymnastics, Music and Tennis
Favorite Camp Value: Personal Growth and Development – It represents why so many of us are at camp. We not only create opportunities for others to grow, but we as directors grow more and more each summer.
Goofiest thing I have done at Camp: He once took 20 bog trips in one session with a group of Senior Campers.
As a third generation Camp Director, Ruggs follows his family’s legacy and passion for camp and its mission with children from around the world. He was a camper for 11 years, completed the Counselor-in-Training program, was an Assistant Counselor, a Counselor, and a Head Counselor. He graduated from DePauw University in 1993 where he majored in Economics and was treasurer of his fraternity. Four years later, he returned to the camps full time. Ruggs proudly continues the Cote Family tradition at camp with his wife Nancy and their children Christian (2000), Audrey (2001), Sam (2002), and Elise (2014).
Favorite Camp Activity: Sailing
Best Camp Memory: Fire Watch and eating Alaskan Hummingbird
Favorite Camp Meal: Tacos
Childhood Hobbies: Sailing, Legos, Tennis
Favorite Camp Value: Excellence – it’s what makes us great!
Goofiest thing I’ve done at Camp: Running the Weenie backwards (in my youth, of course)
As the son of Brownie Cote, who purchased the camps in 1923, Sam has literally grown up in the camping business and has made it his life’s work. As a child, he was a camper in the majority of the cabins at Camp Lincoln, was a Counselor-In-Training (CIT), and a staff member for a number of summers. While not at the lake for the summers, he grew up in the Twin Cities area and attended Colgate University where he majored in economics, was on the swim team, and was treasurer for his fraternity. He joined his father working full-time for the camps in 1968 and has played a major role in the American Camp Association (ACA) serving as Northland Section president for two years and ACA Board member for several terms. He has also been an Association of Independent Camps (AIC) Board Member for three years. Sam and his wife, Mary Jo, have four children: Kelly, Cathy, Ruggs, and Polly. With 12 grandchildren to date, the Cote Family already has fourth generation campers continuing the legacy at Camp Lincoln and Camp Lake Hubert. In his spare time, Sam enjoys sailing, tennis, hiking, and is a member of the Edina Rotary Club.
Favorite Camp Activity: Tennis and Archery
Best Camp Memory: Every opening camp day!
Favorite Camp Meal: Bill Jones’ Pizza Night
Childhood Hobbies: Tennis, sailing, swimming
Favorite Core Value: Quality Relationships – it’s what makes camp special!
Goofiest thing I’ve done at Camp: Tried to beat Andre’ in Indian Leg Wrestling
The biggest difference we see is that Erol has developed self-awareness. He has become more observant of his surroundings and shows genuine respect.
Camp Lincoln and Camp Lake Hubert have been such an integral part of our kids' childhood....some of their happiest memories are from their time at camp.
I think it was time to get to know other people all by himself, he went to the camp alone, so it was worth it to see all the people he got to know, and get related to.