Bay Cliff board hires new executive director

Clare Lutgen was hired to take over as Bay Cliff Health Camp’s new executive director. She will replace Tim Bennett, who announced his retirement last year. (Courtesy photo)

BIG BAY — The Bay Cliff Health Camp Board of Directors recently announced its next executive director, Clare Lutgen. Lutgen has succeeded Tim Bennett, who held the job as executive director since 1992, a press release states. Bennett’s retirement plans were announced in 2017 and the board began an extensive, nation-wide search before hiring Lutgen. As executive director, she will be responsible for the promotion, administration and supervision of the program, facility and staff.

Clare (Perttunen) Lutgen is a native of Marquette. She graduated from Purdue University with a bachelor of science degree, completed her masters of education at Indiana Wesleyan University, and earned her doctor of education degree from Indiana University. Lutgen has been involved in public education as a high school science teacher, and building and central office administrator in Lafayette and Fort Wayne, Indiana. She is happy to be back home in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

“Clare shadowed Tim Bennett this year during the summer camp and quickly realized she made the right decision,” said Buzz Berube, board president. “We are very fortunate Clare has come back and have confidence that she will lead Bay Cliff into its next era. She will be an asset to the community.”

The board will host a reception for the community to meet Lutgen from 5-8 p.m. Sept. 27 at the Holiday Inn in Marquette. All are welcome.

Bay Cliff Health Camp, located in Big Bay, was established in 1934 to promote the health, welfare, happiness and development of children of the U.P. with physical disabilities. Today, Bay Cliff is a therapy center serving 160 children each summer during its seven-week program. Bay Cliff also hosts over 40 other related camps and events throughout the year.