Ask the Chairman - Task Forces

Q. I heard that the National Committee has created a bunch of Task Forces. What do they do and how does that work?

A. Yes, we have created task forces (instead of standing committees) when the work they are chartered to do has a defined beginning and endpoint. In the past, I have appointed Task Forces which looked at the Mission of the Order, the Purpose of the Order, and the Governance of the Order of the Arrow Committee. Each made insightful recommendations, which were adopted by vote of the National Committee after full vetting and discussion.

I will give you another more recent example which was formed last November and was disbanded in May, after its final recommendations were voted on by the National Committee at the recent meeting in San Diego.

Journey to Excellence Task Force: A blue ribbon panel, led by Admiral Dan McCarthy, was asked to look at the Journey to Excellence program adopted by the Boy Scouts of America and recommend how the Order of the Arrow could better support its councils by modifying our Quality Lodge Program to align more fully with the new program of the BSA. The members of the task force were given a starting point, and end point, they did excellent work, and with their work completed, the task force was dissolved.

There are four task forces that are now in existence.

Each of them, also has a specific mission, a specific chairman, a specific timetable, and specific members, approved by the Chairman of the National Order of the Arrow Committee.

100th Anniversary Task Force led by Carey Mignerey. This group is to coordinate across all the subcommittees of the OA Committee to develop the themes and programs we will use to celebrate our centennial…I would expect that their efforts would culminate in 2015 at NOAC, but that they will create tools for lodges to use as they develop their own plans for the celebration as they leave NOAC 2012. Preliminary report on “how we plan to celebrate our 100th Anniversary” will be presented at the December meeting, 2011.

Branding Task Force led by Bud Harrelson. Its job is twofold: first to look at the publishing of a guidebook which shows all members how to use the logo, trademark, and copyrighted materials of the Order of the Arrow, and then, as we approach the 100th Anniversary, look further at our logo treatments in coordination with the Strategic Plan Task Force and the 100th Anniversary Task Force to evaluate if today’s emerging youth members might be better served with adjustments to our trademarks, copyrights, and materials during our next 100 years. The first piece of their work is concluded; the second piece will end with the adoption of the new strategic plan.

Strategic Plan Task Force led by Dr. Glenn Ault. This group is charged with understanding the strategic plan of the BSA and to discern ways, consistent with our mission and purpose that we can best help our councils, lodges, units, and chapters. Their work will be rolled out for training at the NOAC 2012. This group has established a high level of communication with the BSA and is well represented with members representing the outdoor program, units, chapters, lodges, finance, communications, and event planning.

Membership/Retention Task Force led by National Commissioner, Tico Perez. The Order of the Arrow, which we love, has enjoyed an increase in membership from 2010 to 2011. This is the first growth we have experienced in a decade. Tico has been asked to assemble a group of OA thinkers and strategists from all levels, to develop plans which will feed this modest growth and develop it into the robust mechanism to retain youth in Scouting, nationwide…the life of this Task Force will continue until NOAC 2012, when many of its suggestions will be rolled out for the participants to take home to aid their local programs.

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