Always a Boy Scout
I have been a Boy Scout since I was eight-years old. I love to camp, hike, swim, sit by the campfire and do all the things that Boy Scouts do. As a youth, I attended summer camp in New Jersey, a National Jamboree in Valley Forge, PA and a World Jamboree in England.
I saw the pride in my son’s eyes when he earned Scouting’s highest award and became an Eagle Scout. I recall that same pride when I earned my Eagle Scout award.
As an adult Scouter, I enjoy helping youth become Scouts so they can gain the benefits that the Scouting program has to offer. I give freely of my time, my talents and my treasure to support the Boy Scout program. For more than 50 years, I have been involved in various ways with Scouting and have gained much; however, I have received much more than I have given. I have attended National Jamborees at Fort A. P. Hill in Fredericksburg, Virginia and in Beckley, West Virginia. I attended an international Camporee in the Normandy Region of France, the high-adventure Sea Base Camp in the Florida Keys and I attended Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico.
Scouting is a program that builds character, teaches life-long skills and prepares youth for responsible adulthood. It helps youth by giving them opportunities to go places and experience things that they could never imagine. It gives them the chance to meet people who are different from them but who enjoy the same things they enjoy. It encourages them to “Help other people at all times,” it requires that they “Do a good turn daily,” it challenges them to live by the twelve points of the Scout Law and it teaches them to live by the elements of the Scout Oath.
When I graduated from high school, I needed a summer job to help me earn money for my college education. Scouting rescued me from being a farm laborer, picking string beans and strawberries in South Jersey, and gave me the chance to work at Delmont Scout Reservation in Green Lane, PA. I worked at that camp each summer while I was in undergraduate school and I remember it as one of the best summer jobs I could have had.
As an adult Scouter, I have been a Scoutmaster, a member of various Scout Council Boards, a Board Vice President, a Board President and I currently serve as the Commissioner for the Northeast Region of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), a region that includes states from Maine to Northern Virginia, Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands and Transatlantic Council in Europe and East Asia.
I have no plans to reduce my Scouting involvement. I have been invited to teach a week-long course at Philmont Scout Ranch, New Mexico in June 2018 and I am preparing to return to the Normandy Region of France in April 2019 to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Normandy Invasion at the Transatlantic Council’s Camporee.
As an Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources for many years, I had the opportunity to interview and the responsibility to recommend the employment of many people. Whenever I met someone who had been involved in the Scouting Program, I felt that I knew something about their character and their work ethic. We shared a common language, a common set of experiences, a common set of life goals.
As you can tell, Scouting has been good to me. How else could a kid from a small town in Central Jersey have been able to travel to the places I have gone, meet the people I have met and do the things that I have done? I owe all this to the Scouting Program.
If you have an extra hour a week to spare, I invite you to join me and become a volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America.