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Congratulations to Jeffrey Berger, who will serve as Scout executive of South Florida Council in Miami Lakes, Florida, effective September 16, 2018.

Jeff began his Scouting career as a district executive at South Florida Council. He was promoted to program director, then assistant Scout executive in Reno, Nevada. After Hurricane Wilma and Katrina, he returned to Miami Lakes as the director of field service to help rebuild the council.

In 2010, he was promoted to Scout executive of Rocky Mountain Council and served through 2013. He was promoted to deputy Scout executive of National Capital Area Council in Bethesda, Maryland, serving Maryland; Washington, D.C.; Virginia; the U.S. Virgin Islands; and U.S. citizens abroad in North and South America.

Jeff is an Eagle Scout and Vigil Honor member of the Order of the Arrow who enjoys traveling with his family and driving his classic car. He and his wife, Rosmery, have one child.

In the comments below, please help us welcome Jeff to his new role in Scouting, as he joins in partnership with the volunteers and staff of South Florida Council to deliver quality Scouting experiences to the young people of the communities they serve.

Join us as we congratulate George McGovern, who will serve as the Scout executive of Heart of Virginia Council in Richmond, Virginia, effective September 1, 2018.

George began his Scouting career as a district executive at Middle Tennessee Council in Nashville, Tennessee. He moved on to become a district director, field director, finance director, and director of field service in Nashville.

Later, he was selected to be the Scout executive for Flint River Council in Griffin, Georgia, followed by service as Scout executive at Gulf Ridge Council in Tampa, Florida. In 2015, he was promoted to the position of deputy regional director/Area 4 director in the Southern Region.

George is an Eagle Scout and Vigil Honor member of the Order of the Arrow who enjoys Scouting with his boys and watching them swim competitively. He also enjoys sporting clays, golf, and is a swimmer himself. He and his wife Karen have four boys: Wesley and Blake, who are Eagle Scouts; Garrett, who is waiting on his board of review to become Eagle #3; and Landon, a Tenderfoot Scout.

Send your well wishes to George in the comments below as he joins in partnership with the volunteers and staff of Heart of Virginia Council to deliver quality Scouting experiences to the young people of the communities they serve.

When Cubmaster Tony Kircher heard that the Boy Scouts of America would welcome girls to the Cub Scout program, he and his pack, Pack 229, were so elated that they were among the first packs to join as part of the Early Adopter program.

Kircher says the move to include girls in Scouting made perfect sense and called it “one of the best things that I’ve ever seen happen.”

“For our pack, it was natural for us to bring the girls in,” shared Kircher with the Daily Herald. “They were already part of our pack family. We were just thrilled when we could officially make them Cub Scouts.”

Five girls in North Barrington joined Pack 229, yet little has changed for the pack. The girls have already been a part of the Scouting family, now they just get to make it official – wearing the Scout uniform, learning things like the Scout Oath and Law, and earning the recognition.

New Cub Scouts like 6-year-old Addison C. are thrilled to join the pack after watching their brothers participate. Addison had been going on the same trips and hikes, yet she was unable to officially participate in activities until now.  

“She was excited she got to be in a uniform,” Addison’s mother said. “Being allowed to be more active in it will be good for her.”

To read the full story, head to the Daily Herald and watch the video below.

To learn more about serving families through Scouting, visit www.scouting.org/familyscouting

Interested in more information on enrolling a child in Cub Scouts? To find a pack near you, visit www.beascout.org

Congratulations to Lee Shaw Jr., who will serve as Scout executive of W.D. Boyce Council in Peoria, Illinois, effective September 16, 2018.

Lee began his Scouting career as a district executive at Central Ohio Council in Columbus, Ohio. He later became a field director and director of field service at Simon Kenton Council in Columbus, Ohio. He then served as Multicultural Markets Business Development Specialist at the National Service Center in Irving, Texas, followed by a promotion to team leader of National Alliances.

Lee enjoys spending quality time with his family, being active in his church, reading, and physical activities. He and his wife, Paulla, have three children: Janel, Lee III, and Landon.

In the comments below, please help us welcome Lee to his new role in Scouting as he joins the volunteers and staff of W.D Boyce Council to deliver quality Scouting experiences to the young people of the communities they serve.

Join us as we congratulate Craig Poland, who will serve as Scout executive of National Capital Area Council in Bethesda, Maryland, effective September 16, 2018.

Craig began his Scouting career as a district executive at Del-Mar-Va Council in Wilmington, Delaware. After also serving as senior district executive and field director at the council, he was promoted to assistant Scout executive of Minsi Trails Council in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania, and, later, to assistant regional director of the Northeast Region in Jamesburg, New Jersey. Since 2010, he has served as Scout executive of Minsi Trails Council.

Craig is an Eagle Scout who enjoys golf and fishing. He and his wife, Barbara, have two adult children.

In the comments below, help welcome Craig to his new role in Scouting as he joins the volunteers and staff of National Capital Area Council to deliver quality Scouting experiences to the young people of the communities they serve.

Derek Hough shows off his Cub Scout uniform during a 2016 Emmy reception. (Photo: Instagram/ Derek Hough)

Derek Hough is a man of many talents. The 33-year-old Utah-native’s career lays claim to acting, professional ballroom dancing, choreography, and he’s even appeared on both ABC’s Dancing With the Stars and NBC’s World of Dance. He’s also a noteworthy supporter of BSA!

Working to become that talented would take up most of anyone’s schedule, but somehow, this Scouting alum still makes time for another major pursuit—marathon training!

So, where does Hough’s determination to train for a 26.2 mile race come from? Scouting, of course! The man is no stranger to cardio, even years before achieving ballroom fame. 

“I grew up going on runs and hikes in the wilderness. I remember going on these long treks through the mountains when I was a Boy Scout during my childhood in Utah,” Hough shared in a recent interview with Runners’ World.

As his career grew, Hough found he had less time to hit the pavement (or trail) because of the intense and lengthy practice sessions required to reach his professional goals.

 “Once I began my career as a dancer and started to rehearse or perform every night, it became difficult to do any real running… My relationship with running was relegated to jumping on the treadmill for a warmup or conditioning exercise,” he explained.

(Photo: Runners’ World)

However, his passion for running persisted. Hough explained that now that he has more time outside of dance, he’s able to embrace running once again. And this time, he’s ready to take on a big time commitment—marathon training!

He added in the interview, “…now that I have more time to train, I want to take on a marathon. I was just in Chicago—I’d like to start there.”

Hough isn’t the only Scout with a need for speed. Eagle Scout and Olympic race walker John Nunn credits what he learned in Scouting for his success later in life.

And according to Bryan on Scouting’s2016 story, Eagle Scout and Olympic marathoner Jared Ward has claimed, “Some of my best memories came while I was in a Boy Scout uniform.” 

The elite runner even added that Scouting taught him “to do the hard things.”

However, it’s still important to remember that running is about more than just physical fitness.

Derek Hough said it best when he explained, “I feel like when I am running, it not only helps change me physically, it also improves my state of mind… I believe you can feel it affect your chemistry, which helps give you clarity and focus. Getting in a run helps set me up to win.”

Best of luck on your long-runs and happy training, Derek!

Learn more about Derek’s training style, running mantra, and even his running playlist in the full interview from Runners’ World and in the video below:

Do you know a speedy Scout with a love for running? Share your story—and running tips—in the comments!

Photo and video credit: Runners’ World

We’ve just debuted BSA Today – a new series of short videos featuring information and updates on timely topics in Scouting. Each installment will provide you with news you can use.

This month we are sharing a great video from Heart of America Council on welcoming girls into Cub Scouts and Scouts BSA. Watch it, post it, share it. Take a look!

Download Video from Brand Center

Be sure to visit the BSA Today homepage often for new videos on other key Scouting topics!

Story by Lido Vizzutti of the Montana Council

Arya J., 8, wants to be one of the first females in the state of Montana to reach Eagle Scout.

When asked what earning Eagle Scout would mean to her, she pauses for a long moment and, looking up from under her yellow and blue Wolf cap, says, “Honor.”

Pack 4923 of Bigfork, Mont., was among the first in the state to register girls as the BSA welcomes the entire family into Scouting. Eight female Cub Scouts registered in February.

Ayra may have a bit of competition in advancement from her older sister, Sasha J., 10, a Webelos Scout, who is on her way towards completing the Arrow of Light requirements. Sasha was one of two girls in Pack 4923 – along with Gabrielle T., 11 – to earn their Webelos badge.

The BSA announced last October that it is now possible for the whole family to participate in Scouting – and Sasha’s family is thrilled to take advantage of that opportunity. Sasha and Arya’s father, Shawn, 37, is an Eagle Scout, their oldest brother Jeremiah, 14, is an Eagle Scout, and their other brother Jacob, 12, is a Life Scout.

“These are life skills. It’s not about girls and boys,” said their mother Gina J., 44. “It’s about being a well-rounded individual and being productive and feeling successful. It’s about being confident and knowing that you can do whatever it is you set your mind to.”

Many of the Pack 4923 families have stories from the past of younger daughters looking up to, watching, emulating and following along with older siblings and their Scouting adventures – even if badges could not be earned officially at that time.

“Our whole family can be a part of this now,” said Laurell H., mother of Annie H., 8, and Oliver H., 11. “We can do things as a team.”

With the induction of daughters into Scouting, the families gathered for a cookout at Grizzly Base Camp and touted the benefits of better time management in their schedules. Most importantly, they said they see growth in responsibility and leadership among the rest of the family.

In Sasha and Arya’s family, Jacob is Den Chief of Arya’s Wolf den and Jeremiah is Den Chief of Sasha’s Webelos den.

“The whole reason they are Den Chiefs is because their little sisters joined the Pack,” said their father, Shawn.

 “(Scouting has) helped the boys come out of their shells too and do things – like be Den Chiefs – that they may or may not have done in the past,” added Gina. “(Jeremiah’s) done all of these things that’s kind of pushed his envelope a little bit and opened up an opportunity to do things that he may or may not have done ordinarily.

Cubmaster Keri Barr continually sees the benefits that Scouting has brought to this remote Montana community.

“They needed a place where the girls could be Montana girls,” said Barr. “They could go hiking, they could go camping, they could be in the outdoors and not spend all their time learning out of a workbook.”

Exploring the natural world, acquiring skills and going to camp are the topics most enthusiastically referenced among the new recruits when asked the reasons they are proud to be a part of Scouting.

“It’s just that you can actually go and do stuff and be out in the wilderness,” said Gabrielle whose father, Eric, is an Eagle Scout and whose grandfather was also in Scouting.

“I still have all my books, my uniform – I have everything,” Eric said. Adding that because his girls are a part of Scouting, “I can share all those things that I learned and that I kept.”

Like most Scouting families in Montana, “It’s stuff we’ve been doing anyway,” he said. “But now it’s official.”

For more information about Family Scouting, visit https://www.scouting.org/familyscouting/.

Scouting Wire would like to thank Media Specialist Lido Vizzutti of the Montana Council for submitting this story.   

Last week, Sea Scouts from around the world gathered at the Sea Star Base Galveston on the Texas coast to participate in the 2018 William I. Koch International Sea Scout Cup.

This prestigious regatta included 11 preliminary qualifying events held for U.S. Sea Scouts in each of the four BSA regions, with nearly 150 Sea Scouts taking part in the week-long sailing event.

Best-in-class sailors from the U.S., Denmark, Finland, South Africa, Hong Kong, Brazil, Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, and Poland competed in the regatta, but at the end of the week, two Sea Scouts from Cambridge, Mass., took home the Koch Cub trophy. 

Thomas Craciun (left) and Max Katz-Christy (Photo: Bryan on Scouting/ Michael Roytek and Randy Piland)

Part of what makes this win so awesome is the fact that the winning team is relatively new to the world of Sea Scout competition. Skipper Max Katz-Christy, and crewman Thomas Craciun’s first and only Sea Scout-sanctioned race was actually the qualification for the Koch Cup, Bryan on Scouting reported in a recent post. There’s no doubt Spirit of Adventure Council and Sea Scout Ship 131, aka “Brutus,” are proud of their new sailing champions. 

Read about all the winners of the 2018 Koch Cup and learn more about this exciting regatta tradition in the full story from Bryan on Scouting.

Also, be sure to check out the event’s Flickr feed for incredible photos and videos from the regatta!

You can learn more about the Sea Scouts program and find a ship near you by heading to SeaScout.org.

Earlier this week, CBS This Morningaired a segment featuring law enforcement Exploring alumnus Officer Daniel Rodriguez from Orange County, California, and how the program positively impacted his upbringing. 

In the piece, “Officer becomes man’s unlikely father figure,” the former Explorer explains that although his father was incarcerated for many years throughout Rodriguez’ childhood, he never felt resentment toward law enforcement. In fact, he even joined an Exploring post for aspiring police officers as a teen.

It was there Rodriguez met veteran officer and Exploring advisor Jason Perkins. Before long, Perkins was serving as Rodriguez’s mentor, playing an important role throughout his high school years, and in his time at the police academy. 

Rodriguez, who now advises his own Exploring post at a nearby station, explained how he’s giving back through the very program that helped him. 

“It came full circle for me. Working with the kids and trying to do my best at mentoring them, and using the skills that I kind of grasped from Jason, and trying to do what he’s done for me, for all the other kids.”

In the video from CBS This Morning, watch the two officers explain how the Exploring program benefitted both of them, then head to Exploring.org to find a post near you!

Photos & videos: CBS This Morning 

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