To the Speaker of the House of Representatives


Milton H. Ward
President

Roy L. Williams
Chief Scout Executive
For nearly a century, the Boy Scouts of America has provided more than 100 million people the chance to have fun, make friends, and develop the strength of character needed for a life well-lived. As these Scouts grow up, the values they have learned through the Scouting program are hard to forget.

Years after their youth experiences in Scouting, 84 percent of participants agree that the values and character they developed in Scouting continue to be important in their lives. Three of four former Scouts (74 percent) also believe that Scouting helped them to be better leaders in real-life situations. Those Scouts of yesterday are the teachers, scientists, and business and government leaders we depend on today.

In 2000, Scouting reached a larger portion of America's youth than ever before. Four million nine hundred thousand youth experienced the positive program of character development, citizenship training, values education, and physical fitness with the support of tens of thousands of chartered organizations and community groups. They, like the millions of boys before them, are bonded by the timeless Scout Oath and Law and will find that Scouting enables them to mature into adults of strong character and leadership.

The mission of Scouting was passed along to these young people—3.3 million in the traditional Scouting program and 1.6 million in Learning for Life—thanks to the tireless efforts of more than 1.4 million adult role models. These volunteers are providing the support for the challenges of drugs, permissiveness, apathy, and violence. Scouts from inner-city families are having packs, troops, and crews tailored to meet their individual needs. Venturing crews are welcoming both young men and women in pursuit of high character and leadership through high-adventure experiences.

As an organization, we know that our continued growth depends on constantly improving our program, strengthening our local councils, and marketing our message. With the 1998-2002 National Strategic Plan as our guide, we focused on five issues in 2000: volunteer and professional leadership, financial development, unit and membership growth, marketing, and endowment programs.

Our dedication to these issues led to a year of particular pride for the BSA, as we registered our 100 millionth youth member. More than 40,000 young men earned Eagle Scout, 234 Scouts and Scouters were honored with awards for lifesaving and meritorious actions, and we met and surpassed our four-year America's Promise goal of 200 million hours of community service.

Even as we recognize our accomplishments, we have another promise to keep—one that was first made more than 90 years ago. We must continue our dedication to the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law; by doing so, we will remain as strong as ever.

[SIGNED] [SIGNED]
Milton H. Ward
President
Roy L. Williams
Chief Scout