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Happy New Year, everyone!!!
While many of you were out enjoying the holidays with friends and family, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA)'s National Executive Board met for an important decision. As I stated earlier, the BSA was determined to make the selection and announcement of an interim Chief Scout Executive to replace medically retiring Michael Surbaugh before the end of last year. They did. The following was posted to BSA's volunteers and those chartered partners on the last Sunday (December 29, 2019) of the previous year:
"Dear BSA Volunteers and Scouting Ambassadors,
I am happy to let you know that earlier this evening, the National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America named Roger C. Mosby [photo above] as the organization’s CEO and President after a focused search, which was initiated when former CEO and President (Chief Scout Executive) Michael B. Surbaugh retired after a tenure of more than four years.
[more on the titles later]
As the BSA moves through an extraordinary time of both change and opportunity, we believe Roger’s experience as a seasoned executive, adept at guiding transformation and driving growth, will bring the right combination of strength and focus needed to steer our organization toward a promising future.
Roger Mosby most recently ran his own consulting firm focused on executive coaching, following his retirement from leading energy infrastructure company Kinder Morgan in 2015. During nearly two decades with the company, he served as HR lead and was one of the original six officers. During his tenure, Kinder Morgan grew from 175 to more than 11,000 employees, with Mosby leading extensive change management and cultural transformation efforts.
Roger was a Scout as a youth and served for more than 33 years as a volunteer in the Mid-America and Sam Houston Area councils, in addition to positions with the Southern Region and National Committees of the Boy Scouts of America, as well as the World Organization of the Scout Movement. He has received the Silver Antelope Award and the Silver Beaver Award and is a Vigil Honor member of the Order of the Arrow.
We thank Michael Surbaugh for his years of service and leadership to the Boy Scouts of America.
Now, as we enter the next stage, we welcome Roger and his well-suited expertise to guide us toward even more opportunities to bring the benefits of Scouting to more youth, families, and communities.
Yours in Scouting,
Jim Turley, National Chair, Boy Scouts of America"
First, the titles. The BSA is using "CEO/President" to title our new Chief as opposed to "Chief Scout Executive." I have been told two different reasons for the title "change." One, which makes sense to me, is because the BSA is wanting to portray the lead "executive manager and leader" as a "chief executive officer" as opposed to using the BSA's time-honored title "Chief Scout Executive" which does not mean a whole lot to those outside the BSA. It is not supposed to, in *my opinion*. I have also been told that since Mr. Mosby is not a "commissioned officer" of the BSA, he cannot carry the title "Chief Scout Executive" That, I cannot understand since Dr. Elbert K. Fretwell, an academic and recreation and youth development leader was the BSA's second Chief Scout Executive and carried that title until he retired in 1948. He was not "commissioned." As many of my Southern friends would comment, "that dog don't hunt."
The BSA changed the title of the National President (the role which Jim Turley is holding) from "National President" to "National Chair" several years ago (2014 if my memory serves). This makes a bit more sense because Turley chairs the National Executive Board of the BSA, the body which makes decisions and which leads the national organization.
I am going to continue to honor the man in the new role in the time-honored title: Chief Scout Executive, whether he is "commissioned to serve in that role" or not. I may be the only person to do so, but so be it. "CEO/President" means to me, to be the head of a corporation -- IBM, Microsoft, Facebook, Land O'Lakes, CBS/Viacom; "Chief Scout Executive" means only one person: the senior-most employed manager of the Boy Scouts of America (no other organization has a "Chief Scout Executive," to include the Girl Scouts of the USA) and whether professional or not the title makes it distinctive to OUR organization.
From everything I've read and heard, Roger Mosby sounds like a good guy to have as our "CSE" right now. I still, however, feel that we needed someone with "name recognition" like Secretary Gates to help the BSA win the media battles as this year moves onward. Having someone who can move and shake those at the National Center and outward to our local Councils is one thing; having someone with immediate "gravitas" and positive standing when talking with the various publics is another. Dr. Gates, to me, has those qualities, and from what I've read and witnessed, he would have made a great Chief Scout Executive.
Let's see how Chief Roger does in his new job! I hope to shake your hand in Washington later this year.
Congrats and FORWARD, Chief!!