Category Archives: Council News

‘On my honor…’ contest opens June 1

Listen up, Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies and Juniors! If you know the Girl Scout Promise by heart and you enthusiastically live it every day, enter the ‘On my honor’ contest for a chance to showcase your Girl Scout spirit in front of more than 600 metro Denver area Girl Scout supporters!

To enter, please capture a video of yourself in uniform reciting The Girl Scout Promise (just the Promise, not the whole law) and then say your name and tell us why The Girl Scout Promise is important to you. Your video should be no more than 1 minute. The selection committee is looking for energy, enthusiasm, personality, and Girl Scout spirit.

Before entering, make sure you are available on the evening of Aug. 25 to be at the Denver Botanic Gardens starting at 4 p.m., because the winner will get to lead the audience at the Women of Distinction Denver on Aug. 25 at the Denver Botanic Gardens in the Girl Scout Promise and Law. You’ll also get a Girl Scout goody bag and the chance to let your Girl Scout spirit shine at GSCO’s largest fundraising event.  The contest closes on July 11.

Submit your video here.

Girl Scouts mourn loss of mass shooting victims

One of 21 victims at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde identified as Girl Scout Amerie Garza

Girl Scouts of Colorado is heartbroken to share that one of our Girl Scouts from a sister council was killed during the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Texas this week. The Girl Scout Movement mourns the death of Amerie Garza, and all of the victims of another senseless shooting.

News outlets are reporting that Amerie attempted to call 9-1-1 when the shooter came into the classroom and she’s being hailed as a hero for attempting to save herself and her peers.

Along with the rest of the nation and the world, Girl Scouts in Colorado mourn for the victims, their families and friends, and all those impacted by this tragedy.

For ways you can help our sisters in Uvalde, please visit the Girl Scout Strong for Uvalde web page at

In the wake of violent events, we all may experience fear and anxiety. The following resources can help you navigate conversations about what’s happened:

Girl Scout Raising Awesome Girls content: When Violence on the News Shakes Her World 

For child-centered grief and trauma resources 

 For mental health crises

  • Call 911
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline1-800-273-8255or for online emotional support
  • The Crisis Text Line connects you to a trained crisis counselor to receive free, 24/7 crisis support via text message: text NAMI to 741741
  • The Disaster Distress Helpline is a 24/7 national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling (more info at National Institute of Mental Health): Dial 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor

For families or troops seeking mental health care services

Mental Health America (MHA) links to affiliates across the country and offers resources for finding treatment

Remembering the Legacy of Three Lifetime Girl Scout Alumnae


Jan, age 73, died on August 19, 2021 at her home in Windsor, CO.  She struggled for over six years with non-smoker’s lung cancer, using the mantra “I am not my body” and maintaining a positive attitude through her various rounds of treatment.  She was born in Cleveland, Ohio on October 16, 1947 and attended Fairview Park High School, The University of Toledo, and LaVerne College, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology.

Jan married Stephen Flanders Erickson in June of 1967 and after Steve was commissioned as a US Navy officer, they traveled the world, living in 16 homes in 52 years.  Steve and Jan had two children, Kristy (1970) and Keith (1972).  They retired to Windsor, CO to be nearer to family.

Jan was a lifelong Girl Scout and an avid volunteer. She enjoyed nature, hiking, camping, and travel and sharing those passions with other Girl Scouts young and old. She held various roles over the years, as a scout, leader, and member of the Green Hat Society. She was a founding member of the Sierra Silver Streaks Chapter in NV and a member of the Plains to Peak Chapter in CO. Being a Girl Scout brought her friendships around the world. She travelled to England, Scotland, and Ireland with members of Tokyo Troop 113 in 1985 and to Switzerland with members of the Green Hat Society in September 2014. Her volunteer experiences always involved helping people, the most memorable being as her time as an EMT in South Carolina, an English conversation teacher during her years in Japan, and an educator at Elam Environmental Center at Camp Ken-Jockety near Columbus OH. Her last adventures took her on travels to Israel and Italy in 2019. A favorite quote of hers and one which inspired her to live ever day to the fullest – “Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.”

Jan’s commitment to Girl Scouting was indeed life-long.  She brought the Green Hat Society to Colorado, and encouraged involvement in various activities, groups and events around the state.  She was involved in the Songbirds Girl Scout Choir, attended Women’s Week at Meadow Mountain Ranch, and was of assistance with several International Festivals, highlighting her own experiences with Girl Scouts and Girl Guides around the world.  Her camp name was “Lief,” reminiscent of her commitment to the out-of-doors as well as to her family’s heritage.

It’s easy to see Jan with her jaunty hat and ready smile, singing all the way, immersed in camp’s activities and encouraging others to immerse themselves into Girl Scouting all through their lives.  Jan, you are missed.


Joy died at age 96 on January 22, 2022.  She was born in 1925 in Miami, Fl., and attended Miami Beach Public Schools.  She was a member of the National Honor Society in high school, played the violin from age 3 and was active in dramatics, tennis and Girl Scouts.  She attended Florida State College For Women and graduated with a degree in Music and Psychology.

Joy joined the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State and her first assignment in the fall of 1948 was in Seoul, Korea.  She met Edward Pohl in Paris, France, where he served as a Courier, also with the Foreign Service.  They were subsequently transferred to Germany, Panama, Sicily, and Tunisia.  Continuing her Foreign Service as a Staff Officer and Executive Assistant to various Ambassadors, her posts included Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Haiti, Switzerland and Niger.  They had two children, Lyn and John, four grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Joy was involved with Girl Scouts all over the world, through the Troops on Foreign Soil programs, serving as Leader and then Country Commissioner of North Germany.  She served in leadership positions in Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.

After she and Ed retired and moved to Estes Park in 1982, Joy became active with the Girl Scouts-Mountain Prairie Council in Northern Colorado.  She was a troop leader as well as serving as First Vice President of the Board of Directors of MPGSC.  She enjoyed participation and involvement with the GSCO History Group and the Promise Partners GS Alumni group.  She was always eager to share her Girl Scouting travel experience with others through demonstrations, exhibits, trainings, talks and involvement with International Festivals.

“Always a Girl Scout” describes Joy perfectly.  She carried her “joy” and enthusiasm for the history and traditions of Girl Scouting and Girl Guiding all over the world, even after their retirement through travels throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.  A memorial bench will be constructed and installed at Meadow Mountain Ranch proudly displaying that theme, “Always A Girl Scout – in Memory of Joy Pohl.”  Joy, you are a true inspiration.


Lillian died on February 11, 2022 in Littleton, CO., at the age of 82.  She was born in Des Moines, IA. And grew up in Carlton, MN.  She graduated from Carlton High School and married her high school sweetheart, Harold (Zeke) Ziebarth.  They had 4 children and five grandchildren.

Lillian was an avid volunteer, often calling herself a “Professional Volunteer” when asked what she did for a living. She was an adult member of Girl Scouting for over 50 years and she was awarded one of the highest honors an adult member of Girl Scouts can receive – the Thanks Badge. She was a Girl Scout troop leader for all three of her daughters. She loved to sing and loved to teach large groups new songs. To this day there are many people who only knew her by her Girl Scout camp name, “Zing.”  I can hear her singing, “Zing, Zing together, merrily, merrily, merrily Zing.”  She was active in the Songbirds Girl Scout Choir, bringing along her 6-year-old granddaughter,  Sammi Corwin.  Sammi learned to play the guitar through the Songbirds and graduated from high school still singing along with “Zing.”  For many years she was also a member of the alumni group in the Denver area, previously begun under Mile Hi Council.

“Zing” provided us with many old and new Girl Scout songs, and every time we sing “Z-Y-X” (the alphabet backwards!) she will be fondly remembered.

Volunteer View: April 2022

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Volunteer View April 2022


In 2012, Girl Scouts of the USA celebrated its Centennial and the creation of a Colorado Girl Scout license plate was accomplished by a task force of volunteers, who shepherded the process through the Colorado State Legislature.

The Kelly-Green and white license plate with the Girl Scout logo and the slogan “Girl Scouts Since 1912” is available to nearly every vehicle type and available to any individual for purchase.  This enhances the visibility and viability of our Girl Scout family in Colorado.  If a Brownie’s dad owns a business, Girl Scout license plates on all of his company vehicles will showcase commitment and bring awareness to the health of our Girl Scout movement.  Details are available at any County Clerk’s office.

GSUSA Blue Book

What IS the Blue Book?

By Rae Ann Dougherty
Gold Award Girl Scout, Lifelong Volunteer, Immediate Past Chair of Girl Scouts of Colorado (GSCO) Board of Directors and National Delegate

You may have heard references to the Blue Book of Basic Documents – so what is it? It is the collection of governance and policy documents for our national organization.

The way Girl Scouting started in the USA is unique in that it started as a national organization and then, a few years later, chartered Girl Scout councils. In short, Girl Scouts is a federated system form of governance.

The relationship of interdependence between Girl Scout councils and the national organization (Girl Scouts of the USA or GSUSA) may initially be hard to understand, however, it proves to be a powerful methodology that embraces our voices. All parts of the Girl Scout organization in the USA may act independently within the authority defined in the basic documents of Girl Scouts of the USA, known as the “Blue Book of Basic Documents” (commonly referred to as the Blue Book).

Collectively, the national organization, Girl Scout councils, and the National Council are responsible for sustaining the existence of GSUSA. In addition, GSUSA maintains a global relationship as one of 152 member organizations of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, commonly referred to as WAGGGS. In short, if you are a Girl Scout in the USA, you are automatically a member of the global Movement and a “Sister” to the 10 MM Girl Guides and Girl Scouts and benefit from all the international organization provides. If you are a delegate (National or council) or a member of the governance team (i.e., member of Board of Directors or an at-large member of a Board Committee), you should be generally familiar with what it is and what is in it. It contains:

• The Constitution of GSUSA
• GSUSA Bylaws
• GSUSA Policies
• Credentials
• Criteria and Standards for an effective Girl Scout council
• Congressional Charter

A federation is a network of local affiliates that share a mission, a brand, and a program model but are legally independent of one another and of the national office. Sixteen of the largest 20 nonprofits in the United States, including American Red Cross, United Way of America, and YMCA of the USA operate as federations, as does Girl Scouts. Federations offer significant advantages to their affiliates, which in the USA are our Girl Scout councils.

The national organization was first incorporated back in 1915 under the corporate laws of the District of Columbia. The Blue Book has gone through a number of changes throughout Girl Scouting’s history. It originally started as a manual for captains (who are now known as troop leaders). It has always contained the Constitution and Bylaws for the Girl Scout organization, but as our organization grew and changed, more was added. Eventually, the Blue Book morphed into what we know it as today.

The Congressional Charter was conferred upon GSUSA in 1950 by a special act of Congress. Only Congress may amend this Congressional Charter of our organization. The GSUSA Constitution defines and interprets the responsibilities and the authority of the National Council and the National Board of Directors. This national Constitution also defines the purpose and responsibility of Girl Scout councils. This document also includes the bylaws of the national organization.

Each Council has a specific interdependency, as well as independence, with and from GSUSA because each of the councils in the USA and the national entity are their own separate 501(c)(3) organizations. Each of the Girl Scout councils elect national delegates to represent that local council to the National Council. The National Council then elects the National Board of Directors which establishes and renews the charters of each council. As such each Girl Scout council, including Girl Scouts of Colorado (GSCO), has its own set of bylaws that interdependently yet independently governs the local council. The council’s performance is reviewed annually by the National Board which will periodically renew the Council Charter according to that council’s schedule.

More simply stated, Girl Scout councils and GSUSA work together to carry out the Mission of Girl Scouting as set forth in the Preamble to the GSUSA Constitution, but each has specific authority and accountability within the federated structure. It also drives some of the policies you may be familiar with as a volunteer of GSCO, including the policy that prevents girls from the direct solicitation of cash and ensuring any money and other assets raised, earned, or otherwise received is held for the benefit of Girl Scouting and authorized by that Girl Scout council.

Want to be a part of the process? Join out Delegate roundtable conversation to learn more on April 14th 2022.

o Event Link:

Save the date for the next National Council Session in Orlando, Florida in July 2023. It is the 56th in Girl Scouts history!

• Blue Book (English): documents/about-girl-scouts/facts/GSUSA_BlueBook.pdf
• Blue Book (Spanish): documents/about-girl-scouts/facts/GSUSA_LibroAzul.pdf
• GSUSA’s Stewardship:
• Girl Scouts of Colorado’s (GSCO) Bylaws ovember_2017.pdf)

Smart Cookie March 9, 2022

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Smart Cookie: March 2, 2022

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