Tag Archives: alumnae news

Girl Scout alumna summits all 58 of Colorado’s peaks over 14,000 feet as solo climber

Submitted by Debbie Swanson

Pikes Peak

Colorado Springs

Laura Clark, a Girl Scout alum and current troop leader in the Pikes Peak Region, summited all of Colorado’s 58 peaks over 14,000 ft. solo. She completed them in under 14 months, finishing in September of 2018. Laura is a Lifetime Girl Scout and contributes much of her success to the experiences she had in the Girl Scout program. In Girl Scouts, Laura found a space where she could be herself, unlike at school where she felt pressured to fit in. Laura became a Girl Scout in 1986 and was a member of Girl Scout Troop 1494 and later Troop 1503 in Mission Viejo, CA. Her leadership journey began as troop treasurer, collecting 50-cent meeting dues. Her troop rotated through leadership positions, learning how to run effective meetings, set agendas, keep accurate records, and plan activities. Because of Girl Scouts, Laura was able to try new things. If she was interested in sewing or hiking or camping or cooking or first-aid, there was always a Girl Scout badge where she could learn more. She made lifelong friends in Girl Scouts, of whom with many she’s stayed in contact. Her favorite Girl Scout experience was camp. And, of course, singing Girl Scout songs!

“Girl Scout Camp is where I first learned how to shoot a bow and arrow, start a fire, cook outdoors, use a compass, hike at night, rock climb, swim and canoe in a pond, tack and ride and care for a horse (while backpacking in all types of weather) and successful problem solving and conflict resolution strategies. I was encouraged to lead where I could and to try new things.”

Summitting all 58 of Colorado’s peaks over 14,000 feet usually takes years, if not decades, to complete. Laura credits Girl Scouts for the physical and mental strength, endurance, careful planning, determination, adaptability, high-risk tolerance, willingness to ask questions and research, and love of the outdoors, animals, and all types of weather needed to complete the feat. Laura carefully chose her ‘finisher,’  the last peak a climber needs to summit, to say they have summited them all, and it is usually chosen for a special reason. 14er enthusiasts are known for choosing their finisher well in advance. Laura chose Mt. Sherman in honor of Camp Sherman, the Girl Scout Camp in California that started her on her path towards loving the outdoors, adventure, goal-setting, leadership, and girl power.

Laura currently leads Girl Scout Senior Troop 2393 and the troop’s Outdoor Survival Team and has assisted seven girls in earning the Girl Scout Gold Award (and has several more working towards this goal). Last year, she led the first-ever Girl Scout Rocket Troop 46319.
Laura works in marketing and also writes for her blog where she reflects on hiking and Girl Scouts. Laura credits the interpersonal skills, business skills, goal- setting, and marketing she learned from the Girl Scout Cookie Program to helping her in her marketing career.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Daisy’s Circle Supporter Spotlight: Linda Robinson

Tell us about your connection to Girl Scouts.

I am a lifetime member and long time volunteer. I was a Girl Scout as a girl for nine years and came back to help lead my oldest daughter’s Daisy troop in 1985. I was a leader for 20 years with my three daughters and am a proud mom to three Gold Award Girl Scouts. (One is a Daisy’s Circle member and troop leader in Colorado.) Currently, I volunteer on the GSCO History Committee, help with Core Camps at Meadow Mountain Ranch, and am active with Girl Scout Alumnae. I have also been serving on the Gold Award Committee since 2004.

What is the most valuable thing that Girl Scouts gives girls today?

The most valuable thing that Girl Scouts gives girls today is the power to make their own decisions. Girls are challenged to think for themselves and are given a safe space to make mistakes and learn from them.

Why did you join Daisy’s Circle?

I joined Daisy’s Circle as it an easy way to continue to give to a great organization without a lot of fuss.

What is the best thing about monthly giving?

It is easy because you don’t have to remember to write checks.

Is there anything else you would like us to know about you?

I have been happily married for 40 years and have two grandsons and one granddaughter. I enjoy traveling, gardening, sewing, reading, and spending time with family and friends.

Named after Girl Scout founder, Juliette “Daisy” Gordon Low, Daisy’s Circle is Girl Scouts of Colorado’s monthly giving program. Funds raised through Daisy’s Circle provide financial assistance for girls and volunteers, support Outreach Programs and more.  For more information: https://www.gscodaisyscircle.org/

Survey for Girl Scout alumnae

Gold Award Girl Scout Jill Meyer has created a research study examining personality traits of Girl Scout alumnae. To participate in her study, click on this link: https://buffalostate.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4H4PS8zkvePSvzL. Eligible participants are Girl Scout alumnae between the ages of 18-24. Participants must also have been in Girl Scouts until graduation from high school, or stopped participating in 9th, 10th, or 11th grade.

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Women of Distinction Denver: Corporate Champion Awards

Do you know of a Denver business or corporate team who is dedicated to helping women and girls succeed through their volunteerism, mentorship, and philanthropic efforts? Nominate now for the Women of Distinction Corporate Champion Award. Honorees will be announced in May 2019.

The 2019 Corporate Champion will be recognized at the 2019 Women of Distinction Thin Mint Dinner on October 8, 2019 in Denver. The annual Thin Mint Dinner recognizes Women of Distinction and Corporate Champions who serve as models of inspiration to Girl Scouts.

A nominated business should:

  • Demonstrate dedication to advancing women in their industry
  • Provide support and encouragement to women and girls in their industry, including a dynamic and inclusive working environment
  •  Have a proven track record of community service/volunteerism to support girls’ and women’s issues
  • Raise awareness about the remarkable work of talented women in our community

Nominations open through March 22, 2019 at https://gscolorado.formstack.com/forms/untitled_form_64. (to nominate a business, select Denver, and Woman of Distinction Corporate Champion)

Questions? Contact Heidi.Books@gscolorado.org or (303) 607 – 4833.

Oldest Girl Scout in Mancos

Submitted by Cindy Francisco

Southwestern CO


We wanted to share our experience at Mancos Valley Inn Nursing Home while caroling. There was a sweet old lady named Mac Neely, age 97, who did Girl Scouts for 58 years and had a blanket of all her patches in her room. Her first troop was number 78 at the age of 12. It is amazing how you meet people! If you are ever in Mancos, stop by there and see her. Hear her stories and if you look on the top of the blanket, there is a ghost patch she earned by helping push a Navy ship. We wish we could have stayed longer to hear more stories.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Girls learn “Secrets to Success” from Colorado Springs businesswomen

More than 75 girls in grades 6-12 from along the Front Range had the unique opportunity to connect with Colorado Springs area professional women in a speed-dating format, panel discussion, and networking lunch.  Secrets to Success was held in the Pikes Peak region on Saturday, October 20, 2018 at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

Secrets to Success, presented by AT&T and powered by Girl Scouts of Colorado, introduced girls to more than 20 professional women! Breakout sessions went deeper into career options including skilled trades, education, STEM, public service, healthcare, and entrepreneurship. 2008 Olympic Weightlifter Carissa Gump gave the keynote speech.

Special thanks to event sponsors: El Pomar Foundation, GE Johnson, Newmont Mining, Ent Credit Union, Garden of the Gods Collection, Nor’wood Development Group, Union Pacific Foundation, and the U.S. Olympic Committee.

Media Stars go behind-the-scenes at WeatherNation

GSCO Media Stars recently got a special opportunity to go behind-the-scenes at WeatherNation in Centennial. Girl Scouts were the special guests of Meredith Garofalo, Girl Scout alum and meteorologist for the network.  During the tour, girls had the opportunity to do their own weather forecast on the green screen, watch a live weather cast, and see how weather casts are put together for television stations around the United States and in the Caribbean. After the tour, Meredith answered questions about her Girl Scout experience, how she got started in meteorology, how she has overcome obstacles in her personal life and career, and how Girl Scouts helped her become the G.I.R.L. she is today.

You can learn more about Meredith on the GSCO Blog, as she was recently featured as part of our Colorado G.I.R.L. campaign: http://gscoblog.org/colorado-g-i-r-l-meredith-garofalo/ 

Girl Scouts honors 2018 Western Slope Women of Distinction

 WHAT: Girl Scouts of Colorado’s Women of Distinction Breakfast honors three local female community leaders. Honorees are selected by a committee of their peers and chosen based on their contributions to the community, both professionally and personally. They are shining examples of corporate, civic and philanthropic leadership and serve as role models for our female leaders of tomorrow. Since 2013, including this year’s honorees, Girl Scouts of Colorado has recognized 18 women on the Western Slope as Women of Distinction.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is proud to honor the 2018 inductees into the esteemed Women of Distinction program on the Western Slope.

  • Sister Barbara Aldrich SCL, VP of Mission Integration, St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center
  • Jeni Brown, Chief Financial Officer, J.G. Management Systems, Inc.
  • LeAnn Zetmeir, Philanthropist and Community Leader

This year’s event is presented by Event Chair Stacey Mascarenas, Woman of Distinction 2017, Class Liaison Susan Alvillar, Woman of Distinction 2015, and Selection Chair Sue Conry, Woman of Distinction 2017.

Girl Scouts of Colorado will honor these inductees at the 2018 Women of Distinction Breakfast. Attendees will learn about the impact that Girl Scouting is making on the girls of the Western Slope and within its communities. Featured Speakers include Gold Award Girl Scout Molly McPherson and Silver Award Girl Scout Anela Cronk.

WHEN: Thursday, November 8, 2018 – 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. Tickets for the event are $25.

WHERE: Two Rivers Convention Center, Grand Junction

ATTENDANCE: 300 Guests

For more information, including how you can help, contact Cindi Graves at 970-628-8003 or cindi.graves@gscolorado.org. Visit www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/wodgj to purchase tickets and sponsorships. For media, RSVP by November 1 to cindi.graves@gscolorado.org or 970-628-8003.

Thank you to our Gold Presenting Sponsor: USBank and Silver Presenting Sponsors: Chevron, FCI Constructors, St. Mary’s Hospital & Medical Center, Inc. And Media Presenter: Townsquare Media

Entrepreneurship: It’s a G.I.R.L. thing

Submitted by Jessica Gonzalez

Pikes Peak

Colorado Springs

I began my Girl Scout journey as a Daisy and continued through the ranks completing Cadette, all with my momma as my Leader. My fondest memories are from my time as a Girl Scout! One of my favorite outings was an overnight camping trip, where I was first introduced to cake mix peach cobbler in a dutch oven. Equally fun was the aquarium lock-in, which brings a whole new meaning to sleeping with the fishes (LOL)! The principles of Girl Scouts sparked a spirit of entrepreneurship at a young age! I got involved with a door-to-door sales company, similar to that of school programs now. I was well-known in my neighborhood and managed my business, provided customer service and learned money management. Girl Scouts has given me lifelong skills that I have used throughout my life and now pass on to my four children.

Little did I know that I would continue to drive my future through principles learned in Girl Scouts. I started working at the age of 14, graduated high school at the age of 16, and went on to start college at the age of 17. Beyond college I served in the U.S. Army, became a business owner, and continue to volunteer with MOPS International, military groups, and now a Girl Scout leader for my Daisy :)! What’s even better, I get to share this journey with my momma by my side!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Women’s Week 2018: Mark your calendars for 2019

Submitted by Penny Roberts

Northern & Northeastern CO

Estes Park

A smaller-than-usual, but happy group of women gathered at Meadow Mountain Ranch (MMR) for Women’s Week 2018. Participants from Utah, Wyoming, Nevada, Indiana, Maine, and Colorado gathered for food, friendship, and fun in the high country near Allenspark.

Highlights of this year’s gathering were the dedication of the Pinecrest Memorial Unit Shelter and special brunch, a Tajar Tales performance by the Tajar Tales Performance Ensemble, hiking in the pouring rain, crafts (and more crafts), singing (and more singing), spectacular scenery, and the best food around.

Thanks again as always to Susan Baker and her food service gurus, who helped us figure out how to makes S’mores in ice cream cones, and other culinary delicacies without being able to cook over an open fire due to Level 2 fire bans.

Also, thanks to Taryn “Flower” Taylor who reconnected with MMR alumnae and friends from her past and provided special professional-level photography documentation of all the ladies and special events.

Also, thanks to the GSCO professional staff who joined us on Wednesday to dedicate the newly-completed shelter in the Pinecrest Unit. This will serve as a special gathering place for groups who choose to stay in this large, but more distant tabin unit. When the new zipline is completed, it will also provide a picnic place for those groups as well.

Any ladies 18 years of age or older are welcome at Women’s Week. You don’t have to be a current or past Girl Scout, you just have to want to come and play in the outdoors with other like-minded friends. Some of the best experiences were had by a few women who had never been to camp before. Mom and daughter and granddaughter groups have had great family experiences and come back every year to be sure they don’t forget what it’s all about.

A lot of our past participants were called away this year for various reasons like family reunions, overseas trips, graduations, weddings, and the like, but most all of them have expressed their desire to return next year.  The dates are already set – – – mark your calendars right now – – – JULY 15 – 18, 2019 and the schedule will be pretty much the same. First meal on Monday at noon and last meal will be brunch on Thursday morning. Cost is $180 for the total time, but a part-time $60 three-meal grouping of any kind can be arranged. Some “campership” financial assistance may be available.

Is there some special program you would like to offer such as yoga, folk dancing, drumming, or a special craft you’d like to share with the group? Let us know and bring along materials to share. Is there a great menu item you’d like to propose we try, especially if we can build fires next year? Just let us know. The sky is the limit – – stargazing, flying kites, bird watching. Want to explore the “Haunted Florist” or spend time on the self-guided nature trail? Want to climb Longs Peak? Want to sleep out in the back meadow? Want to explore “Hidden Places” known only to a few? We make our own schedules and can flex with the weather and time needed to make it all happen. We can get up early, stay up late, take a nap, take a walk, whatever suits your fancy. Opportunities for service projects can also enhance our camp with the help of David and Julie Fischer, property managers.

For further information, please contact the very informal camp director, Penny “Pan” Roberts, at probertscolo@gmail.com or evenings at (970) 586-1775. Help us continue our history of making Women’s Week at MMR one of the highlights of the summer.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.