Re: Distinguished Commissioner A
Brian L. Davis (brian@COR.GOV)
Mon, 1 Aug 1994 08:35:15 -0500
Wes Mays writes:
->>From what I've been able to gather through reading literature, the
->"old" Commissioner role was to ride herd on "his" Scoutmasters in his
->area. This created animosity to say the least. By the way, this
->ended 40(?) years ago. I think that we have a history that we are
->still striving to overcome.
->I've had excellent relationships with some of my unit leaders and
->poor relationships with others. Most of my good relationships have
->been with most of the Cubmasters and the younger Scoutmasters (I'm
->35 years young.) I find that inexperienced Scouters are the most
->receptive; while the "old" hands feel that they don't need or want
I think most of the problems you are experiencing with older hands could
be attributed to another cause entirely. One of the most common comments
I hear about Commisioners in forums like this, and locally as well,
is that they simply don't do much, even when called. My personal experience
with them is the same: You just don't see much of them.
I have also noticed a perception, probably somewhat justified in
many districts, that commisioners are frequently people too lazy to actually
work with a Unit, that want to continue association with Scouting. When
a DE or District worker gets presented with such a person, they stick them
in a position where they can't hurt much - Commisioner.
Another perception among old-timers, is that many persons currently
working as commisioners have very little actual experience on the front lines
of Scouting. I think this is also somewhat justifed in many cases, since
I've personally seen people who have 2 or 3 years tender in a Cub Pack
go to Commissioner college, and suddenly turn up wanting to "advise" Troops
on how to operate. Basically, they show up and read from the rules and PR
material as though it were their own wisdom. Such persons warrant very little
attention. Can you blame experienced Scoutmasters for ignoring such them?
Here's my personal opinion: It should be a requirement of all
prospective commissioners that they have a minimum tenure as Scoutmaster or
Cubmaster before consideration for service. Will there be as many
commissioners? No. Do we need scads of them? No. Let the Units do their own
re-chartering, and save the Commissioners for problem resolution, and
ceremonies, and so forth. IMHO, I'm just not interested in the advice of
someone who hasn't been there, and done that. I can read the book without
On the other hand, I would love to have an experienced hand to seek
advice from sometimes (Of course *I* have Scouts-L the "Super Commisioner")
or to come mediate a problem between individuals (neutral party).
Unfortunately, I've never had such a person as commisioner.
Used to be an Eagle...
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