Area scout leaders recognized for efforts in reorganizations

From left to right, Sabrina Garfield, Christopher Santiago, and Jamie Santiago receive their James D. Boyce New Unit Organizer Awards at the Kennebec Valley District Scouting Recognition Dinner, held on March 24, at the Winslow Parks and Recreation Hall. (photo by Chuck Mahaleris)

by Chuck Mahaleris

William D. Boyce signed the papers to make the Boy Scouts of America official at exactly 11:03 a.m., on February 8, 1910. On March 24, volunteers from across the area gathered at the Winslow Parks and Recreation Hall to honor three Scouting leaders who helped get two new Scouting programs off the ground to benefit their respective communities. Sabrina Garfield, of Winslow, and Christopher and Jamie Santiago, of Vassalboro, were recognized for restarting Cub Scout Packs #445 and #410, respectively, in 2022 and keeping them active and vibrant. The award they received was named for Chicago publisher William D. Boyce.

William D. Boyce was in London in 1909 when he got lost in the fog. Out of the fog stepped a “little lad of 12” who offered to help him find his way. Boyce tried to give the youngster a tip, but the boy refused, saying he was just doing his Good Turn as a Scout. Boyce was intrigued by the Scout Movement, which had begun in 1907 in England. He returned home from England with pamphlets, badges and a uniform. Six months later, on February 8, 1910, Boyce incorporated the Boy Scouts of America.

The William D. Boyce award is presented to those who help start a new or restart a defunct Cub Scout Pack, Scout Troop, Venture Crew or Sea Scout Ship. In essence, the recipient must lead the entire process of organizing a new unit. The process begins when a prospective chartered organization is assigned and ends when the new unit renews its charter for the first time and receives Journey to Excellence recognition at the Bronze level or above.

“I am so thankful to my Scouting village,” Sabrina Garfield said. “I am grateful for this experience with my kids, not just because of what it teaches them but because it’s so much more than just that. It’s a family affair. Cub Scouting gives the kids a chance to teach things to others and to learn from others. It’s taught them about leadership and teamwork and how to compromise. It’s taught me too. And I have met some pretty amazing people through this journey.”

Christopher Santiago said, “Scouting is a true labor of love for me and as much as I do, I wouldn’t be able to do it without the supportive and engaged parents in my two units representing the Town of Vassalboro and Vassalboro BSA Scouting Troop #410 and Pack #410, as well as the amazing Scouters whom I have come to know as mentors and colleagues. These awards are because of all of them!”


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