2013 Annual Meeting – State of the Council

Adapted from remarks by Board Chair Allison Ochoa at the Annual Meeting on April 6, 2013. Allison Ochoa served as Board Chair from 2007 to 2013. At the Annual Meeting Arnold Hudspeth took over the position as GSKH Board Chair.

On behalf of the board of directors, I am pleased to report that Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland is in a great position to take Girl Scouting into the next century. We are financially sound, making great strides in staying relevant to girls today, and building our leaders of tomorrow.

Today, and as we look to the future, it is also important to honor our rich history. This past year was spent celebrating the traditions and trailblazing of Girl Scouts throughout the last 100 years. Throughout 2012, we had many celebrations led by troops and service units across the council and had a council-wide 100th anniversary celebration in Greensburg, Kansas. There were 1,145 Girl Scouts, Alumni, volunteers, family and friends from across the state gathered together on Saturday, April 28, 2012.

This epic event included fun and educational activities provided by over 15 community partners such as Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism; American Red Cross; and Kansas Cosmosphere, just to name a few. Attendees were able to participate in Girl Scout traditions like camping and SWAPS as well as some exciting STEM (science, technology, mathematics, and engineering) activities and live music.

In addition to all of the celebrations, property planning has also been a part of our work in 2012. The property committee has been meeting regularly to consider the needs to best serve our girls through our camp sites, assessing the cost to maintain and/or enhance the sites, and incorporating the valuable insight provided by participants at the town hall meetings that were attended in various cities across the state. The research, assessment, and planning will continue through 2013.

Also throughout 2013, the To Get Her There campaign will continue to be a focus as this effort brings the issues and challenges girls are facing to the forefront of national conversation and provides clarity to why our leadership programs are so important to girls. Through it, Girl Scouts throughout the United States will work to raise awareness of these issues, raise expectations for girls and their positions in our national landscape.

Our council and the Girl Scout movement are in a fantastic position as we look forward to the next century of serving girls. We’re proud of our history and we are excited about what’s to come for all of us as we work to build girls of COURAGE, CONFIDENCE, and CHARACTER who will make our communities, our state, and the world a better place for all of us.

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