Girl Scout Council Realignment News
Southeast Louisiana, Audubon councils in midst of realignment process
Councils aim for new Council start date of April 1, 2008
NEW ORLEANS (From the FALL 2007 VIP)
The realignment process of the Girl Scout Council of Southeast Louisiana and Girl Scouts –Audubon Council (headquartered in Baton Rouge) which began last May, continued through the summer with the formation of the Council Realignment Committee (CRC) and its sub-committees, sub-committee chair training, and development of a vision statement.
The primary charge of the CRC, which is the leadership body for all realignment functions, is to oversee the sub-committees' plan of work and to produce the proposed new Council infrastructure and the transition and integration plan for the realigning councils. In its May meeting, the CRC determined that the work of the CRC and its subcommittees would be completed by March 31, 2008, with the first day of the new Council being April 1, 2008. Transition and integration of the Councils would continue under the leadership of the new Council’s CEO after that.
The decision to conduct a national search for a Chief Executive Officer for the new council was approved, and the CEO Search Subcommittee engaged J.W. Thompson, an executive search firm recommended by GSUSA, with the fees for the search firm to be paid by GSUSA, not the Councils.
Other decisions made by the CRC included each Council holding its own Cookie Sale in 2008. Plans to consolidate sales will be completed by the new Council for the 2009 sale. Council properties will also be inventoried and evaluated, but no properties will be changed by the CRC.
Using input from the two Council’s Annual Meetings, the CRC published its Guiding Principles on the Southeast Louisiana council’s website, and underwent the visioning process for the new Council, publishing a Vision Statement on the website in August. They can be found at www.girlscoutssela.org/news/realignmentnews.asp.
The CRC is co-chaired by Audubon Council CEO Donna Tate and Southeast Louisiana Board Chair Margie Loud Zeno. Other members of the CRC include Ann Forte Trappey, Jackie Alexander, Roy Austin, Pat Witty, Kenneth Carter, Greg Smith, Jackie Daniels, Lynn Robertson, Peggy Armstrong, and Perry Sholes.
Until a name is selected for the new Council, the CRC has adopted GSUSA’s temporary name for the realigning councils – “Louisiana East.” The CRC is committed to honoring and respecting the culture of each Council, blending the best practices and cultures of the two councils without losing the distinctiveness of either one.
As one committee member put it, much like making a gumbo, the realignment will bring a variety of ingredients, all wonderful on their own, into a new creation that is equally as good or better. “In essence, corporate structures will be changing but the heart of who we are and what we do will be maintained and strengthened through this process,” said Tate.
Southeast Louisiana and Audubon are two of over 300 Councils realigning under a national reorganization plan designed by Girl Scouts of the USA to create high performance, high capacity councils with expanded program and delivery of Girl Scouting for all girls, eliminating competition among councils for scarce resources. The three remaining Louisiana Councils based in Lafayette, Shreveport, and Monroe are forming a single Council to be headquartered in Lafayette.