Get to Know Chuck Brasfeild, the Denver Area Council’s Scout Executive/CEO

Have you met Chuck? If you haven’t, you will.

Charles “Chuck” Brasfeild is the new Denver Area Council Scout Executive/CEO. In the few short weeks since Chuck started at the DAC he has already made quite an impression and met with the majority of the DAC’s staff and leadership. And he is just getting started.

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. If I am here to take the Council to the next level it is important that I know the players. If I can make people feel comfortable, they will be more open with me and more productive,” says Chuck.

Chuck hopes to talk with our Scout Masters, District Leaders, volunteers, parents and Scouts to find out what their priorities are. He is focused on finding out how both he and the organization can best support the Council’s youth while also managing to have fun.

Here are 6 things to know about Chuck.

1. While his birth name is Charles, he goes by Chuck. As a boy, his mom called him Chuckie and it just stuck. The only person who calls him Charles, and she really calls him Charles Wesley, is his wife of 25 years, Katie. Together they have three children – two boys and a girl. With one child in college, one in high school and one in middle school there is a never a dull moment in their family.

2. He is a Navy brat. Born at Keesler Airforce Base in Biloxi, Mississippi where his dad supervised the building of submarines, Chuck and his family relocated to Annapolis, Maryland when he was two-years-old. He spent his youth living and working on the Chesapeake Bay.

3. He graduated from Mississippi State–it’s a family thing. Mississippi State is his dad’s alma mater and both Chuck’s sister, Becky, and cousins attended Mississippi State at the same time as he did. He explains, “it was cost effective to have everyone in the same spot. It was kind of a family tradition.” He earned his undergraduate degree in biochemistry. “All my degree means is that I have the ability to learn and that has been a great tool throughout my career.” Thinking he wanted to become a doctor, Chuck simultaneously enrolled at the local community college and got his EMT license. After a few ambulance-runs he quickly realized he did not want to be a doctor.

4. Chuck was a Scout growing up. He was a member of Troop 2576, a charter to the Kent Island Elks, and earned the Rank of Life. But it was his father-in-law, a Scout Executive in Johnson City, Tennessee, who encouraged him to interview with the Scouts. He took a steep pay cut to work with the Scouts but he has never regretted that decision.

He spent the first 10 years of his Scouting career in Orlando. Chuck worked his way up in the Scouting Organization. Two of his favorite roles have been as a District Executive (“you get to see a direct impact”) and a Director of Field Service (“you have a huge impact because you make all of the big plans for the Council”).

5. His friends believe his is just a big Boy Scout at heart and that is reflected in his Scouting career. “The ability to be creative and working with the best volunteers in each community has kept me with the Scouts,” he says. His tenure as a Scouting Executive has included time with the Flint River Council in Griffin, Georgia, where he led a sustained period of membership growth and developed a multi-year capital campaign. He stayed for the first 18 months of the campaign and helped raise the first $3 million. He then moved his family to Sacramento, California where he helped drive the Western Region in Cub Scout growth for 4 of the 5 years he was there.

6. His biggest hobby (cultivated during his time in Sacramento) is chicken farming. His family started with 8 chickens, that number doubled in the spring when Katie and the kids brought home 8 more chicks from the feedstore. One of those chicks ended up being a rooster! The family decided to raise their own chickens and had 35 of their own chicks’ hatch. Half of those were male and were given away. At its peak, the family farm included 31 hens.

So, if you haven’t already met Chuck, you will! But in the meantime, we hope this gives you a little insight into our new Scout Executive, Chuck Brasfeild.

Scouts BSA Member One of the First Girls to Receive Medal of Merit in the DAC

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) Medal of Merit is awarded to a youth member or adult leader who has performed some outstanding act of service of a rare of exceptional character that reflects an uncommon degree of concern for the wellbeing of others.

When Scouts BSA member Leah Jo Maloney set out to hike Mt. Liamuiga on St. Kitts, she had no idea it would be a day that challenged her to utilize her BSA training. Leah Jo and her family set out on a guided hike to the peak of the island, which also happens to be an active volcano. Of the 32 people on the hike, only six wore hiking boots (four of them were Leah, her sister and her parents). Shortly after the hike began, six members of the group turned around when they realized the 3.47 mile climb up the volcano was not a nature hike. After three hours of walking through a steep, lush, dense, and very muddy jungle, the group made it to the summit.

The day took a serious turn as the group was in the early part of their descent. A woman in front of Leah Jo slipped and injured her knee, tearing her ACL. There were three doctors in the hiking group, an endocrinologist, a cardiologist, and a pediatric orthopedist. All three providers assessed the situation and determined that the woman’s knee would need to be stabilized and she would need to be carried for the remaining three miles. Neither of the guides nor the 25 other hikers had any sort of first aid or emergency kit. But Leah Jo did!

Utilizing her first aid training, Leah Jo jumped into action and offered her pink scissors, teal duct tape, and an ace bandage to the surprised orthopedist. Leah Jo then supported the woman’s leg as her knee as wrapped for stabilization. The women then had to be carried down the mountain. Once the group was safely back at home base, Leah Jo – remaining calm – helped treat the various cuts and scrapes that other hikers had received on their way back down the volcano.

Once the group was safely back at home base, Leah Jo helped treat the various cuts and scrapes that people had gotten on their way back down the volcano.

“Leah Jo, our current Senior Patrol Leader (SPL), has been a member of Troop 114G since it was founded on February 1, 2019. Although girls were not able to join the Scouts BSA program for older youth until 2019, linked Troop 114B has a 79-year legacy of helping boys develop Scouting skills and preparedness. Since day one, Leah Jo and other members of her troop have been learning the first aid and survival skills Scouts are known for. As soon as they join, new and younger Scouts participate in advanced training to build a troop legacy of their own,” says Shoshana Nash, Scoutmaster of Troop 114G. “Leah Jo attended NYLT in 2019 and is on staff in 2020. She credits her time in Scouts BSA as giving her the tools to not only help in this dangerous situation, but in her everyday life, her schooling, and her future.”

Most people in the group were woefully underprepared for the challenging hike, including the two guides. However, Leah Jo’s training instilled in her the need to always be prepared. Her commitment to the principles of Scouting literally saved the day. The DAC is proud to have awarded Leah Jo with the Medal of Merit in Scouting via virtual ceremony on April 20, 2020! Her exceptional character reflects an uncommon degree of concern for the wellbeing of others and she demonstrated that to the fullest on St. Kitts.

Denver Area Council Chaplain is Available for Support

The Denver Area Council (DAC) is guided by a more than 110-year-old mission to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law. Boy Scouts of America (BSA) programs offer endless opportunities for adventure and leadership development. The values taught in Scouting help youth become our future leaders. Those youth then become volunteers who encourage the next generation of leaders in our communities, state, and nation.    

The DAC has more than 8,000 volunteers who work as commissioners, unit leaders, event organizers, and much more. One such volunteer is DAC Chaplain, Joe Black. Joe provides spiritual and emotional support for the Scouting community, which means he is available for prayer, words of encouragement, an ear to listen, or guidance.

Joe was a Scout as a youth and has been serving as a DAC volunteer for more than 10 years. He has served in various leadership positions including Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Venturing Crew Assistant, Assistant District Commissioner, instructor for the College Commissioner of Science and University of Scouting, and most recently, the Council Chaplain.

“Scouting is a great program for all youth regardless of age, race, gender, and religion,” says Joe. “I always try to show the values of Scouting and the impact it has made on me and my sons.”

Joe recently led the juvenile division for the Denver Police Department. During nearly three decades with the department, he served as the Captain and one of 46 peer advisors for the peer support program.

Joe is a graduate of Regis University in Denver where he earned a master’s degree in theology. He is also a licensed Christian Minister, a Colson Fellow on World Views, an American Red Cross Spiritual Care Adviser, and a National Camp School certified chaplain. Joe’s expertise in leading and serving his community is invaluable to the DAC.

The DAC Scouting community may contact Joe for support at Scouter554@aol.com.

To learn more about Scouting programs and volunteering with the DAC, visit denverboyscouts.org

Denver Area Council Annual Camp Card Fundraiser Helps Youth Enjoy More Scouting Adventures

Scouting units can use a variety of fundraising methods to help cover the costs of Scouting Adventures such as trips and camping. Each spring the Denver Area Council (DAC) facilitates a Camp Card fundraiser to help Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, Venturing Crews, and Explorer Posts fund their way to participate in Scouting adventures and outdoor activities.

Selling Camp Cards is risk free for units and cards are only $5. The 2020 Camp Card includes discounts to restaurants, retailers, and entertainment activities, including a FREE $20 game play at Dave n’ Busters, discounted tickets for the Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets and Colorado Rapids games, and much more!

In 2019, Scouts sold more than $130,000 of Camp Cards and nearly $ 66,000 was earned in commission. Scouts who participate in the Camp Card fundraiser can use proceeds to help cover the costs of camping equipment, day camp, Scouting activities, and summer camp adventures at Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch (PV), Tahosa High Adventure Base (TH), and Donald E. Scott Adventure Point (CAP). In addition to earning commission, Scouts can earn custom designed patches. The top selling Scout will receive four FREE tickets to a Colorado Avalanche game and a Denver Broncos football signed by former Denver Broncos Safety, Steve Atwater, who was recently voted into Hall of Fame.

Camp Card holders also have free admittance to the Scout Show, an annual DAC event held at the National Western Complex that showcases what Scouting is all about. The next Scout Show will take place Friday, April 24, 2020. Scouts and families can experience endless fun and participate Pinewood Derby races, welding, STEM experiments, arts and crafts, and much more. Many local businesses also host booths with valuable resources and information for Scouting units and parents. The Scout Show is an exciting event Scouts and Scouters never want to miss!

Camp Cards can be purchased online via the DAC website, you may contact your District Executive, or purchase packs of 50 at Customer Service at Hamilton Scout Headquarters, 10455 W. 6th Ave., Lakewood, CO 80215.

The Leadership Assistance Program (LeAP)

Nearly 2,500 youth benefitted from the Denver Area Council’s (DAC) Leadership Assistance Program (LeAP) in 2019. LeAP launched in 2012 to provide traditional Scouting programs to boys and girls, ages 6-21, in the Denver Metro Area who are often affected by social and economic hardships. A majority of youth in the program, 60-70%, are Hispanic. The LeAP program has reached more than 20,000 youth since its inception.  

“LeAP is a beneficial program that brings youth from all backgrounds together to learn about leadership skills and Scouting values,” says LeAP director, Stephany Mesa-Guerra. “The DAC LeAP team truly enjoys working with the kids and families in this program and watching as they become confident and resourceful trail blazers in their communities.”

LeAP is a structured after-school program that typically takes place from 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. The program provides a family oriented safe-space and engaging character development activities on a weekly basis. Trained DAC program aides and volunteers who are passionate about making an impact on youth help implement this program. All LeAP staff seek to instill Scouting values and morals in these youth to help shape them into future leaders. Youth who join the program are provided with free and discounted resources to participate, including uniforms and camperships.

LeAP affords all the following Boy Scouts of America (BSA) programs to its participants: Cub Scouts (ages 5-10), Scouts BSA (ages 11-17), and Venturing (ages 14-20). Additionally, LeAP works with special needs classrooms to deliver the program to youth with unique challenges.

LeAP also partners with Rites of Passage, a residential extended care facility for incarcerated youth facing mental health and trauma issues. The structure and values taught in Scouting contribute to character development traits provided by Rites of Passage treatment programs.

“Scouting has provided all of our youth with valuable hands-on character development skills that benefit them when they have graduated from the program. Even more so, these experiences have provided youth with the insight and opportunity to make Scouting a part of their life and family as they continue to grow,” says Rites of Passage Community Review Board member, Troy Erickson.

More than $600,000 is invested in the LeAP program annually to provide at-risk youth with an opportunity to join Scouting programs. LeAP’s success is attributed to partnerships with more than 90 community organizations including schools, religious institutions, and low-income housing communities.

The DAC LeAP program is made possible through donations, board designations, and grants. United Way funds and the Council’s annual Vale La Pena Awards Reception also help fund the program and pay operational expenses for items including supplies, membership fees, and program aide salaries.

LeAP currently offers six summer programs as well as an overnight adventure camp at Odom Scout Farm in Wheatridge, Colorado. Scouts and families can camp under the stars and participate in outdoor activities such as BB gun shooting, Dutch oven cooking, and crafts. LeAP also participates in an Annual Fishing Derby and Adventure Day event for special needs units, in addition to an advancement program and ceremonies that recognize youth for their achievements.  

To contribute to the LeAP program, select the Leadership Assistance Program from the Make a Donation button in this link.  

Why Scouting

Founded in 1910 on the principles of making a difference through civic service, Scouting provides quality youth programs that build good character and leadership skills, while building better communities. The Denver Area Council (DAC), Boy Scouts of America (BSA), was established in 1916 and settled into its current location in Lakewood, Colorado, in 2009. Through the years the mission has remained the same, to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.

DAC offers innovative programs including overnight adventure camps, as well as day camps at Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch and Tahosa High Adventure Base. Scouts and their families can explore the beautiful landscape and terrain in Colorado while participating in outdoor activities such as hiking, canoeing, mountain biking, white water rafting, and much more.

DAC also offers specialty Day Camps like STEM and Makers Camp at Donald E. Scott Colorado Adventure Point (CAP). STEM helps girls and boys learn about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics through creative, hands-on activities and challenges youth through new experiments designed to teach critical thinking and the scientific method. Makers Camp inspires campers with innovative projects that promote creativity, build confidence, and teaches art concepts.

Scouting is all about providing youth with a unique experience and an unforgettable outdoor adventure with family and friends. Scouting promotes character development, citizenship training, and personal fitness.

As the community continues to grow and diversify, DAC remains committed to growing youth into future leaders including young women. In February of 2019, DAC welcomed girls into Scouts BSA, all of whom now can earn Scouting’s highest rank, Eagle Scout. More than 1,000 young women from the Denver metro area have joined Scouting to build their adventure and become a leader in the community.

Ally, a member of Troop 34G in the Frontier District, joined Scouting to participate in activities other organizations did not offer. Since her time in Scouting, she has been able to participate in outdoor camping and cooking activities, all of which is her favorite part of Scouting. She has also found true value in the program through the Scout Oath and Law. “I think you have to embrace the Scout Oath and Law in your everyday life and make sure you can help others at all times,” says Ally.

Ally has become more independent, less shy, more outgoing, and a better leader through Scouting. She is one of many young women striving to achieve Eagle Scout rank in 2021.

To learn more about Scouting, visit denverboyscouts.org.

Six Rescued from a Lake Last Summer Results in 10 Being Recognized for Lifesaving & Meritorious Actions

Medals of honor await eight Scouts and two Scout leaders from Troop 444 in the Arapahoe District for their lifesaving and meritorious actions on Wellington Lake in Bailey, Colorado.

On July 20, 2018, an intense downburst of wind from the base of a thunderstorm, also known as a microburst, hit Wellington Lake sweeping paddle boarders and a kayaker into the dangerous waters. The Scouts and leaders witnessed the terrifying incident and immediately acted to save lives.

“With conspicuous bravery, these Scouts and leaders quickly launched watercraft to rescue a total of six people from the lake; two Scouts remained on shore to launch and retrieve watercraft and treat the rescued victims for hypothermia, likely saving or preventing serious injury to three adults and three children”, says Matt Maranto, Council Chairman of Merit Awards.

The heroic story was discovered last November when a unit leader shared the incident and statements with Matt, which led him to meet with the troop on December 8, 2018 to storyboard, “a technique much like an accident investigation” to gather facts and witness statements, so the documents could be submitted to National for review.

On July 16, 2019, the National Council awarded eight Lifesaving Awards, and on August 2, 2019, awarded two Meritorious Awards to the Scouts and leaders. These brave individuals are heroes to the Scouting family and those whose lives they saved on July 20, 2018.

The Annual Popcorn Fundraiser – Support Scouting Adventures

For more than 35 years, Trails End has partnered with the Boy Scouts of America to help Scouts earn their way to Scouting adventures with more than 73 percent of the sales directly supporting local Scouting programs.

The popcorn fundraiser is a key ingredient for leadership development and allows Scouts to develop five key skills: goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills, and business ethics.

In 2018, $2.3 million worth of popcorn was sold by the Denver Area Council and nearly $800,000 was earned in commission by Scouting units. Top units who sold more than $40,000 in popcorn earned $15,000 in commission, and $120,000 worth of popcorn was donated to the military through the annual sale.

Scouts who participate can use their funds to cover registration fees, uniforms, Scouting activities, day camps, summer camps, and high adventure experiences. In addition to the commissions, Scouts are eligible for great giveaway prizes including Amazon gift cards, Trails End Scholarships, Denver Broncos tickets, a Broncos Bunch Experience event, and much more!

Scouts who sell $2,500 in any calendar year will receive a Trails End scholarship and invest six percent of their total sales into their college scholarship while selling popcorn, which can be done online, at store fronts, or door-to-door. The top selling Scout will receive two Denver Broncos tickets and Cub Scouts who sell $1,000 in popcorn will receive a Broncos Bunch membership and participate in fun-filled activities on the football field.

Trails End is also offering a new online app and leader portal to manage sales and take credit cards with no processing fees to the units or Scouts.  

Join the thousands of Scouts selling popcorn to earn their Scouting adventures today!

To learn more, visit DenverBoyScouts.org

2019 Council Camporee – #BlastOffDAC!

Get ready to blastoff into an event guaranteed to bring Scouts, Scouters, and families once in a lifetime experiences and endless fun.

The Denver Area Council is excited to announce the return of the Council Camporee on September 20-22, 2019, at beautiful Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch, in Elbert, Colorado!

The Camporee will showcase a party-like celebration of the Scouting movement in Colorado and feature an all new arena show with a spectacular drone finale – as well as the best scouting activities refreshed for 2019.

Attendees can participate in traditional Scouting events, hands-on drone exhibits, a shooting sports tournament, STEM activities, pin trading, and more!

Only eight qualifiers in each Cub Scout rank and combined Scouts BSA/Venturing program will be able to compete in the shooting sports tournament on Sunday, September 22 at the Camporee!

In 2015, Denver Area Council set the world record for the most people popping bubble wrap at the Council Camporee, and we hope to set another record in 2019.

This spectacular event only happens every four years and is a great opportunity for everyone in the Scouting family to participate in an unforgettable experience.

Join us in September and to #blastoffDAC!

To learn more, visit DenverBoyScouts.org

Growing Future Leaders Building Today. Prepared for Tomorrow.

On Monday, June 17, 2019, the Denver Area Council (DAC) celebrated the expansion and upgrade of the Scout Center – Dining Hall at Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch in Elbert, Colorado, with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

The ceremony marked the successful completion of Phase I of the Growing Future Leaders capital campaign. The first phase of the campaign secured funding for capital improvements at Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch (PV), endowment funds for maintaining camp properties, and infrastructure and program enhancements at Donald E. Scott Colorado Adventure Point (CAP).

The new Scout Center – Dining Hall at PV now seats 700 campers and allows growth for future generations of Scout Campers. Our Scouting market has doubled in size over the past year with girls joining Cub Scouts and Scouts BSA. With this, youth membership could double in 5-10 years, an increase of about 20,000 Scouts. Outdoor adventures provided by our camp facilities are a primary attraction for Scouts and investing in our camp facilities is more important now than ever.

The DAC offers overnight adventure camps, as well as day camps. Scouts and families can join the adventure at Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch and Tahosa High Adventure Base as they camp under the stars and participate in outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, shooting sports, white water rafting, rock climbing, and much more! DAC camp counselors are highly experienced and work to provide fun, hands-on activities designed to keep youth physically active while they gain confidence and build camaraderie through teamwork.

DAC also offers day camps at Donald E. Scott Colorado Adventure Point, including Cub Scout Day Camp, STEM and Makers Camp. Cub Scout Day Camp provides Cub Scouts with rank advancement opportunities and activities that offer character development, citizenship training, and personal fitness. STEM camp offers a week of dynamic adventure plus new hands on experiments in the fields of chemistry, biology, geology and physics. Makers Camp inspires creativity and confidence, and teaches art concepts, such as color theory, and the logistics of working in the creative industry.

In June of 2019, Phase II of the campaign launched and will secure $1.6 million to fund the development of the Program Center, Innovation Lab, Adventure Valley Obstacle Course, and Colorado Adventure History Area.

To learn more about Camping and the Growing Future Leaders Campaign, visit Growing Future Leaders at DenverBoyScouts.org.