Let me count the ways. I grew up in the 1950s and 60s when the words “competent” and “girl” were not expected to be joined together. Girl Scouts joined them with it emphasis on camping and badges. I spent my teenage years as a kitchen aid and then counselor in northern Connecticut; I was out of the house, making some money, and doing what I loved. This wooded section of the state was a church that made more sense to me then the dogmas of the two churches I was raised in. We were also introduced to the woodblock art of Gwen Frostic of Presscraft Paper; I made my pilgrimage to visit her store when I moved to Michigan for my residency program in Ann Arbor. I still use her notepaper.

My Girl Scout camping experience saved me when I was a teen who did not fit in at home or school. It gave me a spiritual love of nature and confidence to follow my dreams. I am a retired physician now and volunteer for The Nature Conservancy and am a lifelong learner, whether classes are from the NC Arboretun, the local Community College or University or online.

I hope Girl Scouts remain for girls and women. Although the practical emphasis on finance and business are welcome changes, I also would like to see the spiritual lessons of nature continue as an integral part of the program.