To all of the little girls out there that ever dreamed of becoming an Eagle Scout: today is your day. The Boy Scouts of America have officially stated that they will welcome girls to join the club. We here at 4E have the exclusive perspective from our favorite King Supreme Almighty Boy scout himself — Forrest Gertin (SFS ’20), Chief of the Order of the Arrow of the Boy Scouts of the World!
(Here’s a pic of us during this interview! *fake news*)
Jenna: Hi Forrest, thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to answer some questions about this big transition, and congratulations!
Forrest: Hi Jenna! This is a welcome break from econ. I’m glad to be here with you!
Jenna: How long have you been working on this effort and why was it important to you?
Forrest: The conversation about opening Scouting to young women began this spring, when several key stakeholders in the Boy Scouts of America started to pursue that goal. I started working on it before our National Annual Meeting in May, when I gave a speech in support of the initiative. It was a big step, but I think the movement needed to hear, “Girls should have the opportunity to be Eagle Scouts” from a younger Eagle Scout. It really opened the door for our task force this summer, and as a result of that task force we made the recommendation that the BSA should move forward towards implementation. And now we’re doing it!
I won’t say it was a totally unselfish move — I’d be really proud if my little sister, Jillian, were to become an Eagle Scout.
Jenna: Truly incredible. Riddle me this … will the Boy Scouts still be the “Boy” Scouts if girls are around? Has there been any discussion of a name change?
Forrest: That’s certainly a point of major discussion within the Boy Scouts. I think you’ll see a name change or rebranding as we phase into a more inclusive era. Personally, I’m a fan of calling everyone “Scouts” regardless of gender.
Jenna: I see, I see. One last question, before you go: are there any other big changes on the horizon that you are cleared to share with 4E readers??
Forrest: One change that’s on the horizon is a major regime change. I won’t be the chief next year! On December 28, I’ll pass the role on to the next guy who gets elected…and maybe he or his successor will pass it to a young woman!
Jenna: Amazing, Forrest! Thank you for your service.
Forrest: Thanks, Jenna!
Interview: Forrest Gertin, SFS ’20