Like many of you, I had a lot of plans for 2020. Last year, as a new Council Commissioner, one of my primary goals was to add new people to serve throughout the Council as Unit Commissioners.  While we started the process of identifying candidates for these roles, the pandemic brought that process to a sudden halt. As we emerge from the restrictions of the pandemic, I would like to start over, making the recruitment of new commissioners one of our Council’s priorities for 2021.

So, what is a commissioner and how can they serve? <Continued>  About this time last year, I shared an article in The Guide describing the role a commissioner plays in helping keep units healthy and strong. I thought it would be helpful to re-share a portion of that article again.

A commissioner is:

  • A friend of the unit  the most important of their roles.  Building a great relationship with the unit leadership is key to success. It springs from the attitude, “I care, I am here to help you, what can I do for you?”
  • A representative – The average unit leader is totally occupied in working with the scouts.  Your commissioner is visible as a representative of the Boy Scouts of America when they visit your meeting, serving as an example of the ideals, the principles, and the policies of the Scouting movement.
  • A unit “doctor”  As “doctor”, your unit commissioner knows that prevention is better than a cure.  They are there to see that your units make good “health practices” a way of life. Use them to help you diagnose what may be ailing your unit and then help you find the appropriate remedy. Quick action is needed for units at risk; ones who are not meeting or growing, lack trained leadership, or are having issues with their chartered organization.
  • A teacher Commissioners are experienced Scouters with a wealth of information to share. Take advantage of their practical knowledge, access to resources and their network of other Scouters. Roundtable commissioners have additional opportunities to teach in a “classroom” like setting at monthly roundtables.
  • A coach – Commissioners help to guide units in solving their own problems. Everyone needs coaching or assistance from time to time, even experienced leaders. Commissioners provide them with different “plays” that might be the right one for them to move ahead or succeed at solving a problem.

Being a commissioner is truly about being of service to others. There is nothing like the feeling of knowing that you made a difference. If you are interested in being active as a commissioner serving the Bay-Lakes Council, please contact your District Commissioner or give me a call.  We’d be happy to hear from you!

Roy LaPean
Council Commissioner

“Commissioners – useful, not ornamental!”
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