CHICAGO AREA COUNCIL BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA
TO: Chicago Area Council Scouters
FROM: John Leonard, Council President, Lou Sandoval, Council Commissioner, H. Charles Dobbins, Scout Executive/CEO
DATE: June 15, 2013
RE: Chicago Area Council District Reorganization
On April 17, 2013, the Chicago Area Council Board of Directors approved the reorganization of the districts in our council. The new plan means that we will go from our current eight districts to two service areas that combine four districts into the North Service Area and four districts into the South Service Area
Each service area will be led by a field director. The field directors will be teamed up with three unit serving executives in the North Service Area and four unit serving executives in the South Service Area.
Each unit serving executive will be assigned approximately 40 units and will no longer be held to serve in a specific geography or boundary. We will continue to support and operate our eight current districts for program purposes solely. Each unit service executive will work with program/unit commissioners that will directly support the operations and programming needs of the units in the new reorganization plan.
Our plan is to make a slow but orderly 6 month transition beginning June 1, 2013. The transition began with a 90 day nominating process to select service area volunteers that will culminate with a special annual meeting for the two service areas on September 11, 2013.
During the transition we will continue to provide quality unit service and various trainings, merit badge clinics, camporees and Cub Scout events to complement your unit’s program.
We have made some great inroads in membership growth and unit service over the past few years. Our continual mission has been to improve service to the youth of Chicago. We are confident that this district reorganization plan will help further this goal of serving Chicago’s youth.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. When does the district reorganization take affect?
We will phase it in within the next six months, beginning June 1st, 2013. A schedule of this process will soon be published on the Chicago Area Council website at www.chicagobsa.org .
2. How will this affect our unit?
There is a chance you may have a new unit serving executive. Other than that, there will be no change on the unit level. In fact, units should see improved customer service.
3. How are the new district/service area volunteers chosen?
The two new service areas will use the same nominating process as before: a nominating committee, including current chairs, will recruit volunteers to fill the service area chair and vice chairs. The chartered organization representatives within the new service area will then vote on the slate at a service area elections meeting. This is in accordance with national and council election standards in the bylaws.
4. Will the current districts still have representation on the board?
Yes, all eight chairs from the current district structure have been selected to serve on the council board. In the new structure, there will still be eight board members from the two service areas: two service area chairs and six council members at large - three from the north and three from the south.
5. Why is the council reorganizing the district structure?
In order to be more efficient and to better serve our units. Unit serving executives will now be able to work more closely with the units and focus on a specific area they are proficient in. They are not responsible for multiple duties and service area level operations.
The field directors will now be responsible for providing leadership to the service area committees and nominating committees.
6. Will there still be a roundtable and district events?
Yes. Roundtables and program district events will continue. Units may choose to attend other program districts’ roundtables or events. Some program districts may choose to combine events to allow for greater attendance and more volunteer resources.
7. Which districts are going to be in which area, and what will the new district be called?
As of now we are calling it Service Area North and Service Area South. Service Area North will be made up of the Indian Trails, North River, Fort Dearborn and Western Trails program districts. Service Area South will be made up of the Iroquois, River Trails, Arrowhead, and Greater Southside program districts.
8. Is this happening because councils may merge?
No, some of the local councils have met to discuss possible future consolidations. However, the Chicago Area Council had planned on restructuring the districts with or without potential council mergers.
9. If I am a current district committee member, how does this affect me?
Based on your current volunteer position, there will still be a volunteer position for you. This will be determined by the nominating process or appointment by the program district commissioner.
10. Will this affect the youth in any way?
Yes, by providing better quality service.