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Chinook Council Elections

Candidate Statements

Amber Braun

I feel that I would make a good candidate for voting as I recently submerged myself into Scouts Canada as the incoming Chinook Council Commissioner. I want to represent the Scouters in my council as best as I can. My experience with Scouts Canada in the past 3 years has been very positive one and I want to further gain experiences in the organization. My experiences are at the Section and Group level will help me represent our Council. I am very grateful for the opportunities Scouts Canada has given me to attend Group Commissioner and Group Support Scouter Training so I can better understand the roles. The trainings also provided a great experience to gain networking connections with fellow Scouters. Before becoming a Scouter I had been a member of Girl Guides of Canada for over 30 years and held various District, Area and National positions. I feel I would be suited to represented Chinook Council as a Voting Representative. Thank you for your consideration.

Deacon Stang (Youth)

Hi my name is Deacon Stang. I am 14 years old and I have been involved with Scouts Canada for over 9 years. My first year in Scouting I began as a Beaver Cub and today I am a 3rd year Scout. I remember putting on my uniform and feeling like I belonged and I still feel this way today. I may have a unique perspective and would feel privileged to represent 15th Lethbridge Council as a voting representative and support my council as best I can. Scouting is a fun way to challenge yourself and find new exciting interests, even when you're not looking for them. Being a part of Scouts has taught me there is so much more out there in the world for me and for each of us. Being part of an ogranization like Scouting reminds me I am part of something bigger and I am reminded this is truly an honour.

I understand I will be required to represent the council at the Scouts Annual General Meeting in November of 2020 and at any special meeting of Voting Members that may be called. I remain open and approachable for all topics of conversation. 

Heather McCracken (Youth)

I have been a member of Scouting for the past eleven years, starting as a cub with 719 NE Properties Group. I am now a Rover and treasurer with 719 NE Properties Crew. I am also Council Youth Commissioner for Chinook Council. I have taken on many responsibilities and roles within Scouting, including Deputy Council Youth Commissioner, chair of the search committee for Council Commissioner, planning committee member for Southern Alberta Moot, pilot for Youth Leadership Training, and many more. I have been awarded my Chief Scout Award, Medal for Meritorious Conduct, and Bar to the Medal of Good Service. This past year, I was a representative of Scouts Canada at the Interamerican Leadership Training held in Ecuador.

As Council Youth Commissioner, I have faced many obstacles and challenges, but these have helped shape me into the person I am today. I believe strongly in Scouting not only because of the program, the community, and the international connections it provides, but also because of the youth leadership opportunities. In order to develop well-rounded youth, better prepared for success in our world, we must provide them with opportunities to learn and grow. I believe Scouting is more relevant today than ever, and that every youth who wants to learn new skills, go on adventures, and make new friends should have the opportunity to join Scouting.

One of my favorite memories of Scouting is, of course, the camps. One camp in particular stands out to me, and that is Wilderness Rendezvous. Over the course of a week-long camp in Saskatchewan, every year for five years, I learned skills such a lightweight backpacking, how to use a compass and read a map, how to cook trail food, and how to break your own trail. The camp program culminated with a five-day hike, including a 24 hour solo hike. Through that experience and many others like it, I have learned so much more than how to camp. I have learned perseverance, independence, responsibility, and dedication. This is the true value of Scouting – the development of youth into capable adults. With my experience and passion for Scouting, I think I am well-suited to be a voting member for the upcoming Scouts Canada AGM.

Jonathan Winn

My name is Jonathan Winn, I am a scouter with the scout troop of the 243 Tuscany Group. I have been a scouter for just over five years and thoroughly enjoy my time in scouting. Our group has had many amazing adventures during my time including some amazing backcountry ski and hiking trips as well as sailing and paddling activities at Camp Woods. I share the same passion for scouting that I see in the other scouters that I have had the pleasure to meet.

I am an active member of the Scouts Canada Discussion Group on Facebook where I enjoy reading the many varied and passionately held opinions of the various scouters who post comments there. The role of voting member, for which I am standing, is to represent the views of the ordinary members. I hope that I will be able use the various social media channels available as well as more traditional channels (e-mail and even conversations!) to understand the views of as many members as possible. It is likely that I will have my own opinion on issues that come up, but should I be elected I will endeavor to consider my own view as one of many.

The voting members for the Pacific Coast Council provided a report of their activities after last year’s AGM which is something that I would like to replicate for our Council for this year if elected.

Outside scouting I am a Chartered Professional Accountant with a specialization in financial reporting and corporate governance by not for profit organizations. I believe that there may be some circumstances that occur from time to time where this skill set may be useful.

If you have any specific questions about my candidacy, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Joshua Himmens (Youth)

My name is Josh Himmens (if we haven’t met), I have enjoyed being part of Scouts Canada from the moment I joined Beavers in Calgary.  I have been fortunate to have been part of two fantastic groups with inspiring leaders.  This has given me the opportunity to camp, attend the Canadian Jamboree, the Pacific Jamboree and the World Jamboree.  More than just events, Scouts Canada has given me the opportunity to be Youth Spokesperson and a Group Support Leader.  

With Scouting as my launchpad, I have also had the opportunity to be part of the InterAmerican child and Adolescents’ Correspondents’ Network and attended the third Pan-American Forum of Children and Adolescents on children’s rights in Columbia with the Government of Canada on behalf of Canadian Youth.  I have a passion for the rights of youth, big adventures and debating important issues.

I have loved scouting and all the adventures it has led me too. In fact, Scouts has given me a new definition of an adventure. It used to be just going on a hike or a bold idea, though I now understand that an adventure is a personal experience. Experiences that can bridge the gap from simply making it through tough times to learning a new skill, or taking on responsibility for the first time.

As I have progressed through the various Scouting levels, I have increasingly found ways to contribute back into the organization, and having the opportunity to be voting member, and to be part of the decision making process would be something I would enjoy and take seriously.  It would be a great opportunity to see how Scouts Canada leads at the highest levels, how it accomplishes it’s ambitious mandate and to have the potential to feed back some of my experiences and insights.

I believe I have the Scouting background and other experiences to be an effective voting member and be part of the AGM process for the onward development of Scouts Canada. Personally, I see this role as a stepping stone from a youth member to a more valuable member of the council team. I look forward to the opportunity to continue to give back to the scouting community.

Kristin Isleifson (Youth)

I have been with 3rd Coaldale Scouts for five years. For the past two years I have been our Group Youth Commissioner and this position has given me many opportunities to get involved with the younger sections and to meet some very interesting people in our area.  I have made some great friends at our linking camps/activities.

Scouts has helped me do lots of amazing things for example, I have helped organized three bake sales to help a fellow scout in need. We volunteer at a local demo derby, we do bottle drives and pick up Christmas trees for the town. This year I completed the Wood Badge One and am now able to be a leader for the younger kids.

But by far my favorite thing to do in scouts is first aid and emergency preparedness. I currently hold the Advanced Wilderness First Aid through Canadian Red Cross. As I am under 16 years old an expectation had to be made for me to challenge the course. For Scouts Canada I am the first person under 16 to challenge and pass this course.

 I also hold a current St. John’s Standard First Aid and the Red Cross Wilderness First Aid Level One and Advanced (as mentioned above).   In the St. John’s course and the Advanced Wilderness course I got the highest mark out of the whole class, a 98%. To keep up on my training I helped organize a First Aiders group with our sister groups out of Lethbridge. We were able to hold one meeting before COVID-19 hit. I have continued to practice my skills at home.

Since the COVID-19 shut down our regular meetings we have continued our meeting virtually and have signed up for the Duke of Edinburg and will be actively pursuing the activities outlined in the course. 

I look forward to continuing my scouting adventures this summer and hope to represent the youth on the Council.