Meet Your Officers

The National Venturing Officers’ Association (NVOA) consists of the National Venturing President, the five National Venturing Vice Presidents, and their respective advisors.

National VOA President

Andrew Steckner

NationalVenturing.President@scouting.org

Advisor: Julie Dalton (Email)

Staff: Tim Anderson (Email)

Andrew is currently working towards his Summit Rank, and he is an Eagle Scout. He has also received the William T. Hornaday Badge. He is a Brotherhood Honor member of Erielhonan Lodge and has earned the Council, Area, and Region, and National Venturing Leadership Awards, as well as the Region Sea Scout Leadership Award.

He is heavily involved in International Scouting, as a member of one of the BSA’s International Subcommittees, and as a member of Scouts Canada, where he has received the Queen’s Venturer Award. He is also a member of the Association of Top Achiever Scouts, and as a founding member of his council’s international committee. Andrew is a rising sophomore at the University of Cincinnati studying Mechanical Engineering.

Andrew looks forward to creating transparency in the National VOA by regularly collecting feedback from the field, and equipping the new Territory VOAs to succeed and support councils. He also looks forward to working with the NVOA to build initiatives to increase Venturing membership.

National VOA Vice President of Administration

Miciah Thacker

Email

Advisor: Kris Zahrobsky (Email)

Miciah joined Venturing at the age of 14 to camp, learn leadership skills, and have fun. She is from Dan Beard Council in Cincinnati, Ohio, and served most recently as the Central Region VOA Vice President of Administration.

Miciah recently earned her Summit Rank and has earned the Region, Area, and Council Venturing Leadership Awards. In 2017, she was selected as a winner of the BSA and the Pulitzer Center’s Out of Eden Walk Essay Competition. As such, she traveled to India and walked with Paul Salopek, a National Geographic fellow and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who is walking around the world. Miciah has written articles for Scout Life magazine as well as National Geographic and was a guest speaker at VenturingFest 2018. In her home council, Miciah has been on staff for National Youth Leadership Training for four years and is now SPL of one of Dan Beard’s five courses this year. Miciah is a rising sophomore at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio studying Chemical Engineering and Sustainability.

Miciah looks forward to creating and utilizing resources to support Territory VOAs to ensure that they are successful and supporting Councils. She also looks forward to updating and maintaining contacts and records for VOAs and Councils as well as implementing membership initiatives throughout the country.

National VOA Vice President of Program

Freedom Tansley

Email

Advisor: Elizabeth Finley (Email)

Freedom joined Venturing Crew 219 in Lakenheath, England at the age of 13 to take his Scouting to the next level. He has spent his entire Scouting career overseas as a member of the Transatlantic Council but currently resides in New Hampshire. He most recently served as the Northeast Region VOA Vice President of Program.

Freedom is an Eagle Scout, Summit Rank recipient, and has been recognized with the Region Venturing Leadership Award. He is a Vigil Honor member of the Black Eagle Lodge and has also earned the Venturing Ranger, Quest, and Trust Awards. Freedom is a member of the U.K. Scout Association where he has received his Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award as well as his Queen’s Scout Award. He earned a Congressional Award Gold Medal in 2019 and now serves as an Ambassador for The Congressional Award. He is a rising Junior studying Outdoor Leadership and Management at the University of New Hampshire.

Freedom looks forward to improving the scouting experiences of Venturers nationwide through innovative programming and encouraging all of us to get out and Lead the Adventure! He is excited to work alongside the National Venturing Cabinet to further enable councils to deliver exciting programs, recruit new members, and increase Venturing’s presence in the Scouting community.

National VOA Vice President of Communication

Steven Soto

Email

Advisor: Sherry McGugin (Email)

Steven joined Venturing at the age of 16 to attend more high adventure opportunities across the country. He is from the Western Los Angeles County Council in Los Angeles, California, and most recently served as the Western Region VOA Vice President of Communication. He also serves on his council’s international committee.

Steven is currently working towards his Summit Rank and is an Eagle Scout. He is a Vigil Honor member of Malibu Lodge and has received the James E. West Fellowship, the Silver Shark Award, and earned the Area and Region Venturing Leadership Awards. Steven is a rising sophomore at California State University, Northridge studying Business Law.

Steven is looking forward to expanding the communication and helping build the foundation of the new National VOA. He is also looking forward to supporting Territory VOAs in their communication efforts to engage with all Venturers.

National VOA Vice President of Territory Support for the Eastern Territories

Carina Landgraf

Email

Advisor: Gordon Leary (Email)

Carina joined Venturing back in 2015 as a means of giving back to her community and experiencing more of the outdoors. She is from South Florida Council in Miami, FL, where she founded her own unit. She previously served as a two-term Council VOA President and most recently served as the Southern Region Area 4 VOA President, and currently serves as a member of her council’s Executive Board. She is also one of the creators of the National Noteworthy Crews Award.

Carina achieved her Summit Rank in February of 2020. She has also received the Council and Area Venturing Leadership Awards and earned the Silver Duke of Edinburgh International Award. She is a Brotherhood Honor member of the O-Shot-Caw Lodge.

Carina currently attends the University of Miami where she is majoring in Political Science, History, International Studies, and Religious Studies with minors in German and Business Law.

Carina looks forward to working closely with upcoming Territory VOA leadership teams to ensure a smooth transition into the new Venturing system. She is excited to provide optimal support and resources to local Council VOAs to further recruitment efforts on the grassroots level as well.

National VOA Vice President of Territory Support for the Western Territories

Tara Izadi

Email

Advisor: Gordon Leary (Email)

Tara is from Crew 5330 in the California Inland Empire Council, and has been active in Venturing since she completed eighth grade in 2016. She has completed the Summit Rank, and is a member of the first inaugural class of female Eagle Scouts. Tara is a rising sophomore at the University of California, Los Angeles where she is studying Biology and Gerontology.

She has most recently served as the Western Region Area 4 Venturing Officers’ Association President. Formerly Tara has served the California Inland Empire Council’s Venturing Officers’ Association in the positions of President and Vice President of Administration. Tara has earned the Council and Area Venturing Leadership Awards.

Tara hopes to assist the National Venturing Officers’ Association by providing resources to strengthen Territory and Council VOAs, by promoting an atmosphere of unity and support, and by encouraging open pathways of trust and communication.