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The Pursuit of Servant Leadership



I am a firm believer in the philosophy of attracting competent staff and volunteers, training them to master the basics, clearly and succinctly communicating the Council Leadership’s high-level objective, then encouraging them to use their creativity and problem-solving skills to find the best path to the objective. A servant style of leadership best describes my approach in leading teams and can be seen in my Core Values sample listed below.

My philosophy of trusting in the initiative and creativity of staff and volunteers is a culture, not a method. It requires that leaders guide the mission outcome and control the tactics to get there by listening and engaging conversations. Leaders must create an atmosphere where each team member feels that they can contribute ideas freely, and even encourage vigorous debate. Leaders must believe that no single person has every answer, and expect that creativity, initiative, and prudent risk taking can reveal unique solutions. Staff and volunteers are encouraged to act on instinct and allowed to make minor mistakes on the path to learning, while maintaining healthy respect for the authority of the organization's leadership.

For this philosophy to succeed, trusted, coachable staff and strong volunteer leadership must be in place, then provided effective training to master basic skills necessary to achieve their objective. A successful partnership begins when every member on the team is in sync and moving towards the achieving the goals of the organization.

It is crucial for staff that they:

  • Understand the intent of the organization's leadership goals for them.

  • Are given proper training, tools and guidance.

  • Are trained to act independently as appropriate and have the ability to make decisions at their level, where knowledge of the situation is best.

Equally important is our partnership with organization leadership:

  • Staff and volunteers should be given no more tactical, or “in the weeds” directives than are essential. A “nose in, fingers out” approach is important to maintain balance in operations. This approach begins with staff and key leaders constantly listening and communicating with each other so that bonds maybe made to form relationships.

  • Leadership must be absolutely clear and succinct in the expression of high level goals.

  • Leadership needs to provide tools, training, and guidance necessary for staff to carry out their mission.

Many professional Scouters, like myself, are hired because we do the work of 10. As a senior manager, I must lead 10 others to work. We can do this by causing volunteers and staff to believe in their own ability and feel like valued, supported contributors who are recognized heartily for their success.

I actively strive to improve my leadership style by asking successful people to be mentors. I also use books like “Crucial Conversations, ” “Leadership Challenge” and “Four Disciplines of Execution" (4Dx) as a framework for crafting my work ethics. These same tools will be shared with staff and volunteers. Using tools like these has transformed how our volunteers and staff think about their responsibilities in achieving the strategic objectives.

Here are a few examples of my involvement in building effective teams and board development.

Effective Staff Management

Skilled at interviewing, hiring and onboarding professional, support and seasonal employees. Tenacious with coaching, mentoring, team building, evaluation, and supervision of staff. Able to create environments, utilizing a personal and visible approach to leadership, that motivates employees to “do their best” and achieve personal and professional goals. While at the same time, able to make “tough calls” in dealing with employment issues.

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Core Values

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Orange County Council

  • Transformed the office culture and unified four departments into “one” team. Council was recognized for being an Orange County Top Work Place in 2017, 2018 and 2019. Staff results continue to the lead nation in engagement and satisfaction surveys conducted by the BSA.

  • Created learning environments through staff conferences and team meetings that are fun and engaging and include both support and professional staffs.  highlight of each year is the Amazing Race at the January staff conference. Camp visit days, BBQs, Pot Lucks, and Holiday celebrations help keep our staff fresh and motivated.

  • Deployed a new District Operations strategy to address younger workforce attitudes and increase level of service to units. Divided field services in to three specialist teams: Membership Development, Fund Development and Unit program. Each team is led by a Field Director.

  • Increased and restructured the field team by adding a Director of Strategic Alliances, Director of Outreach and Alumni Relations, Family Scouting Director, Marketing Director and Marketing Specialist. Have been able to grow the staff by adding 3 unit serving executives.

  • Pre-COVID supervised a team of 8 managers, 13 field staff, two program aides, and serve on the Scout Executive Cabinet overseeing a highly diverse council staff of 55 and seasonal staff of just under 200. Currently supervise 2 managers, 7 field staff, two program aides and our full-time staff is 35.

Southern Sierra Council

  • Was able to expand the staff by adding a new District Executive and part-time registrar positions.

  • As Scout Executive, managed 2 professional staff, 4 support staff members, and a seasonal staff of 45.

Golden Empire Council

  • As Director of Field Services, was responsible for 12 professionals, 15 support staff members, and 3 program aides.

  • Added 5 new District Executives to the council team.

  • Involved board members in district nominating committees to expand depth of leadership in the community.


  • Twenty-four years of managing great teams including camp staff. Was an onsite resident camp manager for 12 years.


Board Development​

An important role of the Scout Executive is to identify, recruit, train, and motivate the best possible adult volunteer and professional leadership available at all levels to achieve the strategic objectives of the council and mission of the Boy Scouts of America. It is even more significant to build lasting relationships with our volunteer corp. Developing a AAA board is key to achieving strategic objectives.


Orange County Council

  • Helped to foster AAA board members where they are engaged as council Ambassadors, Askers, and Advocates. Board meetings revolve around open discussions, transparency in reporting, and forward thinking on key initiatives.

  • Strategic objectives and vision is reviewed and modified at annual board retreat. New board members receive a board manual and attend special introduction and orientation gatherings.

  • Summer cabinet visits with each board member initiates feedback, clarifies funding support, and address questions board members may have. This year was especially important to discuss speaking points about Family Scouting.

  • Highly active nominating committee continues to grow diversity within the board by adding new members reflective of the communities we serve.

  • Developed new strategies in district organization structures to help ease the burdens of volunteers and better utilize their skills to grow Scouting. 

Southern Sierra Council

  • Initiated a board orientation event, past president’s reception, and created an Executive Board Orientation Manual.

  • Created a robust nominating committee to identify top-level community leader. Added 6 senior management professionals, including 2 Hispanic members.

  • Created Executive Vice President position as part of a succession and governance plan.

  • Established board member expectations that included a “Give or Get” best practice.

  • Demonstrated business acumen with new reports, utilizing consent agendas, and engaging board members in strategic plan development.


Facilitated top management agendas that focus on the organizations strategic priorities. Able to impress on top leaders that the organization's operations begin with them. Together we must discuss and set vision on all aspects of the organization (personnel, growth, fiduciary stewardship, operations, communication, governance and asset management) using sound business practices.

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