There are many women in Scouting working to help boys grow up to be honorable and valiant men. Some of these women, through their devotion and talent, become mentors and guides for those of us who see how very important this work is and want to make a real difference. Every year the Utah National Parks Council recognizes a few of these outstanding women who impact the lives of so many boys and inspire so many leaders to be better. We introduce this year’s recipients of the Influential Women in Scouting Award. Many of us aspire to become “women such as these.”
For over 26 years Brooke has devoted herself to serving others. Her love for the boys and the Scouting program is evident in her words and actions. She sees service as an opportunity, not a task. She is constantly seeing the needs of others and acting to help lighten their load. She has had an amazing impact on youth in and outside of the Scouting program. She builds confidence in the youth she comes in contact with by helping them to reach their own potential. She truly is a unique woman that has and will have an impact in the lives of everyone she meets.
Lori has devoted herself in service to Scouting for over 20 years. Lori has served in various Cub Scout and Committee assignments. She is a team leader willing to give her best to the boys. She has also worked hard to serve the leaders in her role as Committee Chairman. Lori is Wood Badge trained and has served on staff for an additional 5 courses. She has also served as a Cub Day Camp Course Director. Lori is kind and patient, always looking to love and encourage. She lives the Scout Oath and Law and teaches by way of example.
Cindy has been a positive influence for good on boys of all ages. In fact she has devoted more than 38 years of service to youth in the community. She had been a mentor, coach and friend. Cindy always sets the right example for others to follow. The boys thrive under her leadership. Building the right foundation as the boys enter the Scouting program has had a positive effect as most of her Scouts later earned their Eagle Scout rank. Cindy brings excitement to Scouting. She always wears her Scout uniform. She has set the standard for the program and drives Scouting to new heights.
Tonya has been a devoted participant in Scouting for 16 plus years. Among all of the service she has given, she has served as a Roundtable Commissioner, a Unit Commissioner for 12 units and a Summer Camp Director. She has demonstrated exceptional character throughout her Scouting service. Tonya organized a Christmas Sub for Santa for low income families when she lived in the Las Vegas Area Council. She has been actively involved in many home schooling activities such as field trips and plays. Tonya has been a positive influence for good on boys and adults alike.
Laura has been deeply involved in Scouting for the last 36 years. Her character as it relates to Scouting is evident to anyone who spends five minutes with her. She has an infectious smile and is unfailingly upbeat and optimistic, looking for and finding the best in all those about her. She has touched the lives of people in Scouting all over the world. Laura’s contributions to the community go well beyond Scouting. Along with her husband, Gary, Laura has helped to produce over 13,000 hand-carved and handpainted bolo neckerchief slides as a project to lift and strengthen participants in Scouting.
Donna M Farrer—Orem
Donna is a champion to the boys. What really sets her apart is that she believes in the boys and the power of the Scouting program. She knows that as they shoulder the responsibility of leadership they will develop the skills to become strong men and citizens. She knows that it takes twice the work to have the Scouts lead, but the results in their growth is well worth the effort. She knows that personal growth only comes through personal achievement. She inspires all those around her with her love and Scout spirit. Donna is a massive force for good in our Scouting program and our community.
Suzanne Gunderson—American Fork
Suzanne Gundersen raises Scouts. She gives of her time and talent to meet with each boy, not only her boys but all the boys. She knows how to do the Scouting program and she promotes and teaches it to other leaders. She helps leaders succeed. Suzanne gladly teaches the requirements to each boy individually. She tells them it will take effort, and she unflinchingly tells them it is up to them to succeed. She couples this with firm invitations and expectations in terms of deadlines. She helps the boys succeed. Throughout the past ten years, Suzanne has also volunteered hundreds of hours for the American Fork Marching Band.
Susan Harmon—American Fork
Susan has given more than 28 years of service to Scouting. She is a trained leader and knows the value of training. Anytime anybody is new to Scouting she gives them tips to help them get started and to make things easier for them. She even lets them borrow her own personal visual aids that have taken many hours to prepare. She gladly shares them to help promote Scouting and help instill in others a love for Scouting. She knows that if a leader can get started out in the right way then the boys are the beneficiaries of that. She wants to help boys and leaders succeed. Susan is an influence for good in the lives of leaders and boys alike.
Jennifer Harris—St George
Jennifer’s character is amazing. She truly desires to help others, and seeks no recognition of her own. Her depth of knowledge and experience make her a superb resource, and her selfless service has blessed many lives. Her efforts include service at all levels from the smallest troop activities to the district-level events. Regardless of the need or the challenge, Jennifer is ready to respond. She is the heart and soul of our Scouting efforts in the stake. Her positive attitude and cheerful spirit breathe life into all that is Scouting in the stake. We are blessed to have her in our midst.
Jeanette is the First Lady of Utah. She is the wife of Governor Gary Herbert, and the mother of six children. Jeanette opened a commercial child care and preschool called the Kids Connections which she ran for 23 years. For 13 years, she also operated K.C. Kids’ Club, an hourly drop-in center. Jeanette believes that teaching youth skills like kindness, respect, obedience and listening will be things that carry on into their adult lives. According to a neighbor, “What she does really does reflect her values. She’s really an extremely generous person. She’ll give up a lot of time for people, sharing her talents. Reaching out and serving people, she is excellent at that.”
Eileen is a great example of personal development. She is a person of exceptional character, living the Scout Oath and Law as well as actively applying the values of citizenship, good character, and personal fitness (development). She is a great leader and is always keeping up on the latest changes in Scouting and encouraging others to do so. She continues to live by the idea that every activity should be a “Game with a purpose.” She believes that scouting can help young men develop into good citizens, good husbands and good fathers. She encourages adults and boys to be better as she mentors them along the way.
Janice A Lowe—Spanish Fork
Janice has served many years in Scouting. She has served concurrent years as a unit leader and also with many responsibilities on the council level. She has also helped to oversee programs in her ward and helped to build up the community. She teaches youth about leadership skills and
trains sponsors how to use the program. For over 25 years Janice has been a mentor to young women ages 12 to 18. She often reaches out to them, four out of every seven days. She inspires them to realize their potential during and after high school. Janice is a great mentor and friend to youth of all ages.
Sheryl Milburn—Spanish Fork
Sheryl has given many years of service as a Girl Scout leader and a Cub Scout leader concurrently. She also serves in a district capacity as she organizes and carries out the annual District Webelos Woods service projects. She is anxious to serve and has an active and creative mind. She is always willing to help others and gives service wherever she can. Throughout her Girl Scout and Cub Scout leadership and service events, Sheryl has influenced many thousands of youth to be good citizens and to be more aware of and to be involved in their communities and homes.
Lorena Norris—Pleasant Grove
Lorena is currently serving as a Cub Scout Committee Chair and as a Unit Commissioner. She is always prepared for everything and goes out of her way to make sure that everyone she serves gets the most from the program. She has trained many adult leaders. She is happy to help them so that they can be successful and so that they can then help the boys be successful. Her service includes being on District Training teams and Wood Badge Staffs and she has served on many committees to plan and execute District and Council activities. She is a positive influence for good everywhere she goes.
Rochelle Pinnock—American Fork
Rochelle fulfills her Scouting positions energetically. She has many unique gifts and talents. She exemplifies the Scout Oath and Law. Rochelle is a great example to others because she is always in her Scout uniform. Rochelle continually supports youth service projects with her time and skills. She is of exceptional character! Her unerring qualities of Scouting abundantly bless the young women’s organization throughout the Stake. The Relief Society is incredibly blessed by her service as well. She has many Christ-like qualities. Rochelle sets a great example, shares her knowledge, gives exceptional guidance, supports and encourages all she comes in contact with.
Laura loves the Scouting program and shares the Scouting spirit with all Scouters. She has a lot of knowledge about the Scouting program and continues to look for learning and training opportunities to keep up on the Scouting program as it changes. She always gives her BEST! She is dedicated to the Scouting program and lives the Scout law everyday of her life. She is a positive influence for good on all who come in contact with her. Laura is patient and kind to all. She loves to help people along the path of life. Laura is a problem solver, a peace maker and she loves to see people succeed, especially the young men.
Pat has served in Scouting since her oldest son started his Scouting experience, which means that she has been involved in Scouting in some way or another since 1984. On the district level, she has served as a Roundtable member in various different capacities. In the Alpine District she has been serving since 1998. In addition to helping youth in Scouting, Pat has helped youth learn how to work in the world by volunteering at the SCERA Theater in Orem for more than 30 years. She has demonstrated her commitment to Scouting’s principle in her service to the BSA and at the SCERA by serving youth in both endeavors.
Elizabeth has served in Scouting for more than 15 years and served youth for more than 20. She goes above and beyond the call of duty. She cares more about the Scout than her own health. Elizabeth is an amazing leader. “It is all about the boy” she tells people. She has helped Scouts attain the rank of Eagle who would not normally do so. She does anything she can to help the boys succeed even when it is not convenient. In every aspect of her life, she is a woman of integrity, honor and fortitude. She has the guts to do the right thing all the time. She never quits, in her personal life or in her zeal to help boys succeed.
Tamara keeps meticulous records and meets with each boy and his parents to keep them updated on requirements on their trail to Eagle. At courts of honor she presents awards in a dignified and special way. Besides being the advancement chair, Tamara has also served faithfully as a Cub Scout den mother. She is a wonderful example of selfless service to the young men in our community. She has been serving in various scouting capacities for over 20 years. Tamara is a professional teacher. She is an exceptional leader of both youth and adults. Her influence has had powerful effect for good on all who know her.
Annaleis Smith—Spanish Fork
Annaleis has served as a Cub Scout leader for over 13 years. She has served in multiple positions including Cubmaster, Den Leader, Roundtable Commissioner, and as Akela’s Council staff. She currently serves as a Cubmaster, Assistant Council Commissioner for Cub Scouting and writes for The Boy Scout blog. She really enjoys teaching other leaders about Cub Scouting and has helped train many leaders in her district and across the council at Cub leader Pow Wows, University of Scouting and Commissioner College. She is an enthusiastic and dedicated supporter of Scouting.
Beverly Smith—St George
Beverly has devoted 35 years of service to Scouting. Since 2011 Beverly has served as her stake’s advancement chair and has done an incredible job. She is attentive to the progress of young men in all of the Scouting units and takes a proactive role in helping them advance toward their Eagle rank. Her influence has been particularly important in helping many young men advance. Beverly demonstrates commitment, sacrifice, compassion, leadership, and temperance. Her calm way of leading young men to success is an inspiration to all. Her personality is one of cheerful service. She is constantly engaged in good causes.
Jennifer is a tireless worker for the cause of Scouting. She serves as the unit commissioner in her stake and has held numerous district Scouting positions. She is currently serving as a trainer and is doing an excellent job. She is on staff for Wood Badge family odyssey this year. She is leading our district Cub day camp. Jennifer is the “Go to” person at the district level when something needs doing. She is always ready to volunteer for training or any other assignment that is needed. Jennifer has served in Scouting for at least 20 years. Everything she does demonstrates the Boy Scout values. She is a great leader of adults and boys.
Sylvia has helped with district Cub day camp for the last 23 years. She has also served as a Den Leader and on the district level taught Leader Specific Training for Den Leaders, Webelos Leaders and Cub Masters. She has also been a Roundtable teacher. Sylvia even co-chaired the Scouting Expo last year for the Arapeen District. Sylvia has also been a Girl Scout leader for 5 years. She believes in “Doing a good turn daily” She helps organize a piano festival for more than 100 piano students every year. In fact she has taught piano lessons for over 40 years, many times for free.
Heidi has faithfully served in Cub Scouting for over 13 years. When she was called as a leader there was very little to no enthusiasm among Cub Scouts, parents, or leaders. She has grown the program into something wonderful and she infuses enthusiasm and excitement into the program. She teaches and mentors leaders in her unit and stake. Heidi has been the Committee Chair for up to three units at the same time and has continued to serve even when it was not her official calling. She has also served for many years in the PTA and organizes neighborhood gatherings that include everyone.