Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Gold Award Recipients Honored

On Sunday, June 7, Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast celebrated the 36 local young women who have earned the Girl Scout Gold Award during the past year at a reception held at Norfolk State University. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the highest honor and achievement a girl can earn in Girl Scouting.

The honorees were welcomed to the celebration and congratulated by Dr. Sandra DeLoatch, provost and vice president of academic affairs at Norfolk State University and former member of the board of directors for Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast. They were also congratulated by Robert Boyd, the father or a Gold Award recipient and the regional president of BB&T, which sponsored the celebration.

They keynote speaker for the afternoon was Alyssa Embree, a Girl Scout alumna and recipient of the Girl Scout Gold Award who is currently a partner at Williams Mullen in Norfolk, where her practice focuses on commercial and multifamily real estate and finance. Embree shared important lessons that she learned during her time as a Girl Scout, as well as ways that being a part of the organization made her who she is today.

“Your journey as a Girl Scout doesn’t end today,” Embree told the award recipients. “The values and lessons that you’ve learned as a Girl Scout will serve you throughout your life. The greatest thing that I learned from Girl Scouts was leadership.”

Embree also talked about her Gold Award project, which she earned 17 years ago in Texas. She brought together Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and the National Guard to collect food for the local food banks and food pantries.

Following the keynote address, each Gold Award recipient was recognized on stage, and her project was shared with all of those in attendance. This year’s projects addressed a number of issues in the community, including healthy diets for people living on low incomes, raising awareness about disabilities, sports safety and literacy rates among youth.

The Gold Award celebration is held annually to recognize the girls who earn the top award in Girl Scouting. Nationwide, less than 6 percent of eligible Girl Scouts earn the Gold Award, adding these 36 young women to an elite group of female leaders from across the country with the honor.