Monday, September 14, 2015

Back to Girl Scouts - September CEO Blog

If the busy-ness of back to school time wasn’t a sign that Fall is here, for sure the crispness in the air today is a sign that summer is behind us and we’re swiftly approaching a new Girl Scout year.  2016 will be an exciting year for the Girl Scouts of Central and Southern New Jersey as we embark upon a focused strategic journey and look to enhance and grow the GS experience for both girls and volunteers!

An underlying theme of our new Strategic Plan is partnership, as we envision deepening and expanding partnerships in order to serve more girls.  I looked up the definition of the word partnership and Webster’s defines it as “the agreement to cooperate to advance mutual interest”.  Clearly, the mutual interest we seek to foster is the Girl Scout mission, and in that, to find individuals and organizations who have passion for girls and their success.  As we go forward, identifying and building relationships of all kinds will be key.

Among our most obvious natural partners are the other three NJ Councils, and I am so excited that we have a historic moment upon us.  On September 29, the four Councils of New Jersey are hosting our national CEO, Anna Maria Chavez, at our first Statewide Membership Forum.   It will be a wonderful evening for members to meet and hear from Anna, as she gives insight into her views on leadership and the future of the Girl Scout Movement.  When I first met Anna ~ almost two years ago at a Regional CEO meeting ~ I was impressed by her passion for girls, touched by her deep sense of commitment and responsibility to the traditions and legacy of Girl Scouting, and energized by her unwavering resolve to do whatever it takes to ensure that our movement is around for another 100 years.  I believe that Anna is our modern day Frances Hesselbein, and that she is the leader who will guide us to our next pinnacle of success.  Please join usin Edison on the 29th.

I am also so pleased that one of our corporate partners, TD Bank has helped to make this event possible.  TD not only helps us by offering low cost financial products to our troops and Council operation, but they also have a deep commitment to youth and women’s leadership development, and we are actively discussing all sorts of creative opportunities for their staff to volunteer and become more deeply involved in our Council.  Corporate partners like TD bring an incredible resource of time, talent and treasure to us, and over the coming years we hope to identify and engage many more businesses in our success.  We know that they are out there, just waiting to be invited to come learn more about us.  If you know of a business or business leader who we should be talking with, please let us know so that we can reach out.

In any Girl Scout Council, our most important and valued partners are our volunteers, and as you know recruitment season is upon us!  GSCSNJ Service Unit Leadership is actively working to set up troops and identify needs in their areas, and we are spreading the message far and wide that it’s a great time to join Girl Scouting.  Recently I had the opportunity to do a TV promotional piece for Comcast Newsmakers (below) – to get the word out.  Please help us spread the word and share this link with people you may know who may be interested in volunteering.

 I can’t wait for the new Girl Scout year to begin!  It’s upon us, and filled with new opportunities to learn, grow and share our mission with even more families and girls.  Hope to see you on September 29!

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