Friday, February 28, 2014
Last night the local Boy Scouts of America council had their annual Court of Honor for the adult volunteers. I was awarded a Silver Beaver recognition! This is the highest honor a local council may award to the adult volunteers. This year 24 adults received this recognition. The Cascade Pacific Council, based in Portland, currently has almost 11,000 adult volunteers, so it is quite an amazing distinction.
I was especially amazed to receive this award because I'm currently "just" a merit badge counselor. However, I have been an adult scouting volunteer for over 35 years - since I was about 23 years old!! I have served as a Cub Scout Den Leader (3x), Cub Scout Committee Chair and member, Boy Scout Advancement Chair and committee member, Assistant Scoutmaster (for 5 years - working with the 11-year-old Scouts), District Committee Membership Chair, District Training Team (5 years), and Merit Badge Counselor for too many years to count. I have been Wood Badge trained, and I have been on the Wood Badge Staff 2x. I was Den Leader for my son (David) and grandson (Joshua).
Jim Bean, my first Oregon City Stake President and a huge supporter of Scouting (he serves at the National level) nominated me. He told me that he wants to see more long-term volunteers recognized, and he thinks it's important that not only have I served very actively in the past, but that I am still involved with youth by teaching high school and by serving as Young Women's President. He was impressed to hear that I have taken the Young Women out on high adventure backpacking outings for the last 2 summers - so I'm taking the outdoor skills I learned through scouting and I am continuing to share them with youth. I also served at Young Women's Camp as a cabin mom, camp director, and certification leader for a ten-year span.
Last night we enjoyed a dinner with the other Silver Beavers and their families. Mark presented me with my award. Mom cheered us on. It was an evening to remember.
And yet, nothing much changes, right? I'm still me. I'll sew another little "knot" patch on my uniform to signify the Silver Beaver award, and then I plan to continue serving as I have always done. Being affiliated with an LDS Pack and Troop means that I'm always around, always a potential leader (again). Which is awesome. I'm proud and happy to be a member of the Boy Scouts of America.