Vanguard International Scouting Association
On January 1, 2020, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Church) discontinued its role as a chartered organization with all Scouting programs around the world, including the Boy Scouts of America. The Church has for over 100 years been a great supporter of Scouting in many countries and many have benefited greatly because of this. President George Albert Smith once said, “I feel grateful to the Lord that Sir Robert Baden-Powell was impressed—may I say, inspired—to give Scouting to the world” (Improvement Era, Sept. 1948, 558).
Recognizing that the Church has concluded its formal relationships with Scouting, many felt a strong prompting to organize an International Scouting Association for members and friends of the Church. This association will provide a way to connect with those who recognize what Scouting has done and will continue to do around the world.
Realizing that many Latter-day Saints desire to continue their Scouting experience, the Church has encouraged them to join community Scouting units. Therefore, as with other denominations participating in Scouting, Latter-day Saints continuing their Scouting involvement desire an independent organization to support their efforts in Scouting, domestically and internationally. Hence the creation of Vanguard International Scouting Association.
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Why the Name Vanguard?
Vanguard is defined as an adventurer in a new territory or an unconquered place. We are truly embarking on an adventure as Latter-day Saint Scouters begin a new era of Scouting.
The Vanguard name has historical significance within the Church. In the early years of Scouting in the Church, leaders emphasized affiliation with national Scouting organizations all over the world. The Vanguard program was initiated for Church units outside of the United States where no national Scouting program was available. Membership was open to all youth ages twelve to fourteen, including those who were not Church members. Curriculum included activities, advancement, achievement, and spiritual growth.
Mission of Vanguard International Scouting
Represent Latter-day Saint Scouts and Scouters worldwide, through effective association with WOSM (World Organization of the Scout Movement), BSA, and other National Scouting Organizations
Encourage membership in and affiliation with Scouting organizations by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints worldwide
Develop a BSA Religious Award to help Latter-day Saint Scouts and Scouting leaders learn and apply their duty to God
Meet Our Team
Christine’s Scouting started as a Den and Webelos Leader for her four boys, all of whom became Eagle Scouts. Chris served as a staff member for national and international events including three BSA National Jamborees, three World Scout Jamborees, and World Scout Conferences. Chris is a passionate believer in BSA’s Wood Badge training, staffing four Wood Badge courses. She was the Course Director of the first National Linked Troop Wood Badge Course. Chris’s Scouting awards include: Silver Buffalo, Silver Beaver, International Scouter Award, and Greater Salt Lake Council Influential Women in Scouting 2012. Chris’s current Scout assignment is Co-lead Volunteer (along with her husband, Wayne) of the BSA’s Office of Development which is tasked with the construction and funding of all of the facilities of the SBR.
Wayne’s adult Scouting involvement began when his wife Christine returned from a Church meeting and told him that she had told the Bishop that Wayne would be happy to serve as the Ward’s new Cubmaster. From this “Voluntold” event Wayne went on to serve in a unique series of Scouting assignments including as Cubmaster, Cub Committee Chair, Scoutmaster, Troop Committee Chair, Venturing Leader, District Chair, Council President, Area President, Western Region President, BSA International Commissioner, member of the World Scout Committee, Chair of the World Scout Foundation and as the 34th National President of the BSA. Wayne has served as a staff member of many National and World Jamborees and Wood Badge courses. Wayne’s Scouting awards include Scoutmaster Award of Merit, Silver Beaver, Silver Antelope, Silver Buffalo, Silver Hawk (Japan), Silver Eagle (Mexico), Silver Wolf (Sweden) and the Bronze Wolf.
Todd L. Moody has been active in Scouting since his childhood. He has been married to his high school sweetheart for 32 years. He is an Eagle Scout; his two sons are Eagle Scouts, and his two daughters are married to Eagle Scouts. He has served in many positions on the council level, regionally and nationally. He has attended several national and world jamborees. He’s an attorney in Las Vegas, Nevada, where he has developed a boutique adoption practice. Todd is actively involved in the community and currently serves on the Greater Las Vegas Communications Council for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Jake is married to Darnell, is the father of 5 and grandfather of 14 (and counting), and resides in Park City, UT. His business career spanned 45 years in the tools business where he served in a variety of roles and for the last 30 years, as Pres/CEO of Stanley Proto Tools, Danaher Tool Group PTD, and Leatherman Tool Group. He currently serves on the board of directors of Cambia Health Solutions, Leupold and Stevens Corp, and Wiha Tools. His Scouting experience includes Life Scout award (sorry Mom) Ass’t Scoutmaster, Scout committee chair, Cascade Pacific Council president, Western Region VP, Western Region Area 2 president, and board of directors for Vanguard International Scouting Association.
Lyle R. Knight is married to Toril (52 years), with five grown children, two Eagle Scout sons, three Eagle Scout grandsons and twenty-four grandchildren. Lyle concluded his career as President and Chief Executive Officer of First Interstate BancSystem, Inc., a multi-state Bank Holding Company. He has been active in charitable and community service his entire adult life. He has a passion for youth development organizations and currently serves on the National Executive Board of Boy Scouts of America. He also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Rocky Mountain College. He is a former Vice President of the Federal Advisory Council, acting as an advisor to Chairman Bernanke and the Board of Governors, representing the Ninth District of the Federal Reserve System. He was awarded the Silver Beaver, Silver Antelope and Silver Buffalo awards from Boy Scouts of America, and a bronze star for military service in the U.S Army, while stationed in the Republic of South Vietnam.
Serving for a second time as president of West Virginia University, Dr. E. Gordon Gee has been a leader in higher education for more than three decades. In 2009 Time magazine named him one of the top 10 university presidents in the United States. Recently, the website Great Value Colleges named him the nation’s top university president. Gee also served as president of The Ohio State University (twice), Vanderbilt University, Brown University, and the University of Colorado. Before starting his career in higher education, he clerked under Chief Justice David T. Lewis of the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals and was a judicial fellow and staff assistant to the U.S. Supreme Court, where he worked for Chief Justice Warren Burger. He is the co-author of over a dozen books and has also authored many papers and articles on law and education. In addition to serving on the Vanguard International Scouting Association Board, he currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the National 4-H Council, the National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America and Board of Directors of the American Council on Education – the nation’s largest higher education organization. He served as chair of the Big 12 Board of Directors Executive Committee for the 2017-18 year.
Board Member / President
Charles specializes in healthcare law at Kirton McConkie. He has served in various Church callings, including Scoutmaster, Ward Young Men President, Unit Commissioner and member of a stake Young Men Presidency, Stake President, YSA Branch President, Mission President of the Germany Hamburg Mission (1992-1995), and Young Men General President of the Church (2004-2009). He was the Honorary Consul for Germany from 1999 – 2015 and a founding member and president of the Utah Consular Corps. Charles is a member of the BSA National Executive Board and served as the BSA National Commissioner from 2016-2018. Charles and his wife, Zella, have five daughters (affectionately known as “Charlie’s Angels”) and 16 grandchildren.
Board Member / Registrar / Exec. Secretary
Mark began his Scouting career as a district executive at the Utah National Parks Council in Orem, Utah. He has served the Boy Scouts of America in many roles, including Scout executive of the Greater Wyoming Council and in 2012 became the Director of the LDS-BSA Relationships Office in Salt Lake City, Utah. He is currently the Scout Executive of the Far East Council of the BSA in Okinawa, Japan. Aside from his professional duties, he has served as a volunteer Scout leader for several packs and troops during the past 20 years. In 2017 he was presented with the National Outstanding Eagle Scout Award. Mark and his wife, Nettie, have ten children. All their children are involved in Scouting, and their two oldest sons are Eagle Scouts.
Vice President – Operations
Trevor serves as the Assistant Council Commissioner for Membership in the San Diego Imperial Council. He has served in Scouting as a Webelos Den Leader, Scoutmaster, Varsity Coach and Venturing Crew Advisor, Chairman of the Latter-day Saint Service and Transition Team, and co-author of the nationally recognized Saints & Scouts Newsletter and FaceBook page. He completed Wood Badge in the Chief Seattle Council and has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Distinguished Commissioner Service Award, District Award of Merit, and the Silver Beaver Award. In 2020 he completed his Doctorate of Commissioner Science and served as a Troop Guide to the first-ever National Linked Troop Model Woodbadge course (BSA 20-1). Currently. Trevor and his wife Sally have four children: Bryce (Eagle Scout) Kaylee, Jared (Eagle Scout), Aubree, and 1 granddaughter, Emma, with another on the way!
Vice President – Communications
Neal has served in a variety of Scouting roles at both Council and National levels. He was one of the leaders of the “Novus” technology team for the 2019 World Scout Jamboree, as well as Wood Badge Course Director, National Jamboree staff, Council Executive Board, District Chairman, and Scoutmaster.
Neal has earned his Doctorate in Commissioner Science and received the District Award of Merit, Scouter & Commissioner’s Keys, and the William D. Boyce New Unit Organizer Award
Neal has over twenty-five years of experience in the video game and technology industries, serving as VP of Sega and Universal Studios. He has been lucky enough to see the game industry from just about every perspective – from launching & marketing console platforms to game development on mobile, PC, and console.
Vice President – Program
Matt McIff and his wife, Rachel, reside in Saint George, Utah, and have 4 children. All are involved in Scouting and enjoy outdoor activities in Southern Utah. Matt is the Scoutmaster for Troop 42 sponsored by the St. George Rotary Club. He has served in other Scouting capacities for over 10 years including Varsity Scout coach, Committee Chair, Assistant Scoutmaster-new Scout patrol, and Chartered Organization Representative. In his youth, Matt earned his Eagle Scout Award and attended National Youth Leadership Training as well as Philmont Scout Ranch and developed his lifelong love of Scouting. Matt is a native of central Utah and works as a Family Physician in St. George.
Chief Financial Officer
Jordan and his wife, Kristin, are both Wood Badge trained and have 4 very active children. Jordan attended college at the University of Utah, where he graduated in Organizational Communication. He is a partner in Evergreen 1031 Advisors and is involved in community service, serving as CFO for the Weber Meadowview Ranch Corporation as well as CFO for the Vanguard International Scouting Association. His service in the church includes callings as Bishop and Stake Young Men President.
Religious Awards Committee Co-Chair
Wayne retired from a career in Semiconductor Electronics management, has been an avid Scout and Scouter for over 65 years. He is an Eagle Scout and has been a Scoutmaster, Varsity Coach, and Wood Badge course director. He served on the executive boards of two different councils and as council commissioner and council president. He has also been an Area 3 vice president and Area 3 commissioner and is currently a Western Region assistant commissioner and board member. He has served in significant roles for ten national and World Jamborees. His Church service includes full-time missionary, bishop, stake Young Men president in two stakes, service missionary and stake clerk. He is a recipient of the Silver Beaver, Silver Antelope, and Outstanding Eagle Scout awards. Wayne is a James E. West Fellow and a member of the Second Century Society. In 2019 Wayne and Roma started Troop 947 and Pack 947 in Pleasanton, CA.
Religious Awards Committee Co-Chair
Roma’s Scouting activity began when she married Wayne nearly 54 years ago and he was already serving as an assistant Scoutmaster. They are the parents of five children (4 Eagle Scout sons and 1 Eagle Scout son-in-law) and have 20 grandchildren (4 Eagles and more coming). Roma has been a den leader, den leader coach, and on staff for six national and world jamborees. She and Wayne have served on Philmont faculty for LDS Weeks 26 times. A former ward and stake Primary president, ward and stake Relief Society president, Roma has also served with Wayne as managers of the Concord Bishops’ Storehouse and as Church Service Missionaries to the Young Men General Presidency. She is a recipient of the Silver Beaver, Silver Antelope, and Philmont Master Track awards.
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Homer has been registered in Scouting for over 40 years. During that time, he has served as District Chairman, ADC, Scoutmaster, Varsity, Explorer, and Venturer leader and on various Wood Badge Staffs. He has received the Silver Beaver Award in two Scout councils and the District Award of Merit. He loved serving with Kathi as an 11-Year-Old Scout leader. Homer served as service missionary from 2015-17 for the Young Men General Presidency where he provided support at Philmont Scout Ranch for the “Priesthood Leadership Conference on Scouting” and coordinating the three booths sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at the 2017 National Jamboree. He served as staff or national and world jamborees in 2013 and 2015.
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Kathi has been a registered Scouter for 41 years. She served as service missionary from 2015-17 for the Young Men General Presidency, providing staff support for the “Priesthood Leadership Conferences on Scouting” at Philmont Scout Ranch and coordinated the three Church-sponsored booths at the 2017 National Jamboree. She staffed for Church booths at the national and world jamborees in 2013 and 2015. She has been a Wood Badge Course Director, on Area Wood Badge staff, Council Training and Camp Committees, District and Assistant District Commissioners. She has also been Den & Webelos Leaders, 11-yr-old Scout Leader, and Committee chair for all Scouting families. Awards received include: Silver Beaver awards from two Scout councils, Distinguished Commissioner Award, two District Awards of Merit, and the Influential Women in Scouting Award. She was part of the group of historians and writers who created the book “Century of Honor, 100 Years of Scouting in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”
Vanguard Communications Team, Webmaster
Mike earned his Eagle Scout in his Latter-day Saint troop in Orem, Utah, and went on to serve in the Order of the Arrow, joined a co-ed Explorer Post, and worked as a backpacking trail guide at Beaver High Adventure Base during summers while he was in high school. He used many of his Scouting and First Aid skills while serving an LDS mission on the islands of Vanuatu. When Mike returned from his mission he was asked to be an Assistant Scoutmaster, and has been a Scouting volunteer ever since. He has served as Cubmaster, Ward Scout Committee Chair, Stake Young Men Presidency, and District Troop Committee Chair. Mike is the father of 4 adventurous boys and founded Troop 20 in Highland/Alpine Utah where he currently serves at the Scoutmaster. Mike also uses his software engineering skills to help the Vanguard International Scouting Association as the Webmaster.
Vanguard Scouting Supporting Activities
1. Serve as a liaison between Scouts and Scouters who are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and BSA, other NSOs (National Scouting Organizations), and WOSM (World Organization of the Scout Movement).
2. Represent Latter-day Saint Scouters on the BSA’s Religious Relationships Task Force and other BSA committees and encourage active participation on BSA committees at all levels: national, regional, area, council, and district.
3. Provide and coordinate, in connection with local Church leaders, Latter-day Saint chaplain services at Philmont Scout Ranch, National and World Jamborees, and other Scouting encampments.
4. Represent Latter-day Saint Scouts, Scouters, and Scouting families at BSA National Jamborees, World Scout Jamborees, and other Scouting events by providing Latter-day Saint Scouting exhibits, sponsoring Latter-day Saint Scouting events, and so on.
5. Provide a forum for connecting Latter-day Saint Scouters across the world to help them be more effective in using Scouting to further the youth objectives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
6. Provide communications to Latter-day Saints involved in Scouting and others domestically and across the world concerning the benefits of Scouting in helping their youth reach their potential, develop life skills, develop character traits, and prepare them…for Life.
7. Continue to build bridges of “friendship, fellowship, and faith” with our Scouting friends from all different backgrounds and denominations around the world.
8. Develop and promote a Religious Award to help Latter-day Saint Scouts, Scouting leaders, and families learn and apply their Duty to God. Provide written materials to describe the requirements for Scouts and leaders to earn the award and provide helps and materials to assist them in earning the award.
9. Sponsor annual Conferences for Latter-day Saint Scouters at Philmont Scout Ranch.
10. Develop materials to support the efforts of Latter-day Saint Scouters worldwide.
11. Work with the BSA for periodic checks and necessary maintenance of the chapel built by and used by Latter-day Saints at Philmont Scout Ranch.
12. Work with the BSA to develop marketing and recruitment materials to help grow Scouting, both domestically and internationally, among those of the Latter-day Saint faith.
13. Encourage occasional Scouting encampments for Latter-day Saint Scouts, normally on a Scouting regional or area basis.
14. Perform those other functions that will encourage active involvement in the Scouting programs of the BSA and other NSOs worldwide by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
15. Provide ideas to show how the work in various national Scouting programs can be used to support the new Church child and youth development program. The intent is to give a guide to the complementary nature of the two programs and to show that youth efforts in one can also serve the youth in the other.
Note: Vanguard International Scouting Association is an independent association, not officially sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but which supports Latter-day Saints involved in Scouting worldwide.