Published Thursday, March 07, 2013

Harper is first Cowetan to receive Hornaday Badge

From Staff Reports

Frank Harper of Newnan has been presented with the William T. Hornaday Gold Badge by the Flint River Council, Boy Scouts of America.

Harper is the first Cowetan to be presented with the Hornaday Badge, a council level award presented to adult Scouters who have provided significant leadership in conservation at the district or council level – or beyond – over a period of at least three years. Only seven people have received the award from the Flint River Council since it was begun in 2003.

Harper was presented with the award on Nov. 15 during the final executive board meeting of the year at the Council Service Center in Griffin. Presenting the badge were Chuck Brasfield, the council’s Scout executive, and Ken Palmer, council president.

According to BSA: “The fundamental purpose of the Hornaday Awards program is to encourage learning by the participants and to increase public awareness about natural resource conservation. Understanding and practicing sound stewardship of natural resources and environmental protection strengthens Scouting’s emphasis on respecting the outdoors. The goal of this awards program is to encourage and recognize truly outstanding efforts undertaken by Scouting units, Scouts and Venturers, adult Scouters, and other individuals, corporations, and institutions that have contributed significantly to natural resource conservation and environmental protection.”

Harper has emphasized stewardship of the environment through his service in multiple Order of the Arrow conservation service projects and events. At the 2006 Order of the Arrow National Planning Meeting, Harper was selected to serve as the deputy lead adviser for the Promoting Outdoor Adventure committee at the 2007 National Conservation and Leadership Summit at Indiana University.

At that meeting – an event aimed at preparing for the ArrowCorp5 service project, Harper played a key role in developing strategies for promoting outdoor adventure and creating a greater sense of environmental awareness for Order of the Arrow youth.

Later, Harper was appointed to serve as lead adviser for the Southern Region’s ArrowCorp5 committee. Under his leadership, the Southern Region sent more participants to the ArrowCorps5 project than any other region.

For the 2008 ArrowCorps5 conservation initiative, Harper served as the material support director for the Shasta-Trinity project at Mount Shasta, Calif. In that role, he was responsible for supplying all tools, materials, food and supplies to the 600 participants and staff for all phases of the project. Highlights of the project included repairing and clearing more than 100 miles of hiking trails in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, removing more than 22 tons of illegally dumped garbage and repairing four Forest Service comfort stations.

Following Shasta-Trinity, Harper served as logistics chief for a week during the 2011 SummitCorps service project at the New River Gorge National River in Glen Jean, W.V. In that role, Harper participated in on-site planning visits October 2010 and April 2011, attended the national planning meeting in Dallas, Texas in December 2010, and played a crucial role in developing the logistical plans for the month-long SummitCorps event in July 2011.

During his week of on-site service, Harper oversaw all phases of logistical support for the Order of the Arrow’s national service project, including transportation, medical support and cities, supplies and material support, security and communications. Overall, more than 1,400 Scouts participated in the event, constructing more than 12 miles of trail in the New River Gorge National River.

Scouts and leaders gave more than 78,000 volunteer service hours to the project, resulting in an estimated value of more than $1.6 million in environmental improvements in the New River Gorge.

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