PYOCA Transition Information

As news of Rich Swartwood’s (Executive Director) call to serve Clearwater Forest Camp and Retreat Center was announced on Saturday, the Pyoca Advisory Council has been diligently working on establishing and executing a transition plan for his departure on March 7, 2014. Please find a few frequently asked questions below related to the transition and upcoming events.

(1)    Is Pyoca operating “as normal” during this transition time?

YES! All programming (retreats, work groups, camps, and other activities) will continue as scheduled. For more information on scheduling a retreat or registering for camp, please visit the Pyoca website ( or contact Mike Davis.

(2)    Pyoca’s Summer Camp Ministry – Are all programs still planned?

Camp will go on! Summer programming will not change; all camps have been scheduled and registration is now open (visit Volunteer directors have been identified, summer staff applications have been received, and the Advisory Council is anticipating summer staff hiring recommendations within the next few weeks.

(3)    Where is Rich going? Who will assume his responsibilities?

Rich’s leadership of Pyoca will end on March 7, 2014. Rich was not looking to leave Pyoca. Instead, God called him to his next ministry as Executive Director at Clearwater Forest Camp and Retreat Center. This is Rich’s childhood camp, and the Swartwood family is excited to begin a new chapter in their ministry.

Effective March 7, 2014, Mike Davis has been named Interim Head of Staff. Mike is currently the Interim Assistant Camp Director; he has been in different leadership capacities during the past four summers at camp and has greeted many retreat groups during the retreat season. The Advisory Council is thankful for Mike’s dedication, commitment, and future leadership of Pyoca’s staff.

(4)    If I have questions, whom do I call?

For any camp, retreat, or programming questions, please contact: Mike Davis (812-358-3413). Mike will hold office hours on Monday and Wednesday afternoons and all-day Friday. You may leave a message or email him at anytime. If you have an immediate need, you may contact: Frank Mansell (317-291-0308), Advisory Council Chair or Allen Colwell (812-945-3531), Executive Committee Chair.

(5)    How can I celebrate Rich’s ministry?

The Advisory Council is hosting an open house to celebrate Rich’s ministry on March 1, 2014 from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. at Pyoca Lodge. All are invited to attend. In honor of Rich’s twenty years of service, we will be collecting donations for the general scholarship fund. If you are unable to attend, cards are being collected by Mandy Ernest. Please send these to 886 East County Rd 100 S Brownstown, IN 47220, and address to Mandy Ernest. Checks can be made payable to Pyoca Camp, Conference and Retreat Center. Please add “Scholarship Fund” to the subject line.

The Advisory Council’s initial focus has been establishing a short-term transition plan (March through August), continuing all programming as normal, and establishing a framework for a long-term plan. This long-term plan will include creating a job description, establishing an Executive Director search committee, and continuing to execute on Pyoca’s mission.

With a full and grateful heart,

Pyoca Advisory Council