Mid-America Council receives national awards, area leaders selected to key scouting roles

By: Mary Beth Kriskey, Marketing Director, (402) 431-9BSA (9272)

The Mid-America Council, Boy Scouts of America, was recognized at the National Boy Scouts of America’s Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. last month.

National Marketing Award

The Mid-America Council received the “National President’s Award for Marketing Excellence.” The local council won for the third consecutive year in the “Best Positive Public Relations” category, notes William F. “Rick” Cronk, president of the Boy Scouts of America. The Council was honored for local and national media coverage of “Project Pocket Flag,” coordinated by Troop 53 in Bellevue, NE, which has created and distributed more than 20,000 miniature American flags to soldiers serving overseas. Established eight years ago, the national marketing competition recognizes outstanding and innovative marketing produced by, or on behalf of, the Scouts and the local council. A panel of 21 marketing, advertising and public relations professionals judged 280 entries in eight categories.

Regional Awards
The Mid-America Council, headquartered in Omaha, with a satellite office in Sioux City, IA, was named one of the top Scout councils in the Central Region, which encompasses 14 states. The Council was recognized as a “Bronze Record Award” recipient, for adding a minimum of $500,000 to the Council’s Endowment Fund in 2005. The Council also received the “National Endowment Achievement Award,” for meeting and/or exceeding national standards for an effective endowment program. For the fourth consecutive year, the Mid-America Council received the “Scoutreach Award,” for service to inner city youth. Reporting more than 10,000 hours of community service by Scouts and adult volunteers earned the Council the “2005 Good Turn for America” Award.

The Council ranked among the top 10 councils in the Central Region in several categories, including financial support, the number of Scouts receiving Boys’ Life magazine and the ratio of commissioners to units (packs, dens, troops). (The Commissioner Ratio indicates the number of trained adult volunteers in leadership roles per unit.) The Council was ranked first for the number of trained adults, with 85 percent of top leaders trained to provide a quality program to youth.

Local leaders selected for key Scouting roles
John Gottschalk, president and chairman, Omaha World-Herald, was inducted as the national Executive Vice-President for the Boy Scouts of America, assuming the role of former Executive Vice-President William F. Cronk, who was named the National President for the Boy Scouts of America. Cronk is the president of Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream, Inc., of Oakland, California.

Gottschalk was the Chairman for the Mid-America Council in 1994-95, was honored as the Council’s “Citizen of the Year” in 1998 and was the national chairman for the Boy Scouts’ Jamboree in 2001.

Other community and corporate leaders in the Mid-America Council elected to key Scouting roles for the Regional Advisory Council include Charles W. Durham, chairman and CEO, Durham Resources, Omaha; Villiers R. Gerd, treasurer, Triangle Land and Cattle Company, Omaha, Charles W. Wilson, president, Gold Key Homes, Inc., Red Oak, Iowa; Robert D. Bates, president ? Benefit Partners, Jefferson Pilot Financial, Omaha; Joseph W. Elliott, vice president, Inspro Insurance, Omaha; Stephen J. McCollister, executive vice president, McCollister and Company, Council Bluffs; Roy A. Smith, president, Old Mill Toyota, Omaha; Timothy G. Varney, retired, Omaha; Jack D. Virtue, retired, Onawa, Iowa, and Tommy L. Whalen, managing principal, SilverStone Group, Inc., Omaha.

Whalen was also elected as vice president of the Boy Scouts’ Learning for Life/Exploring program, as part of the regional executive committee.

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