Scouter Spotlight: Meet Rick Bragga


It doesn’t matter whether you’ve been a Scouting volunteer
for five months or 50 years—your role in the lives of youth has equal
importance. Still, you’ve got to be inspired by volunteers who have given
decades of their lives to the program.

This week we’ll introduce one of those “veterans” of
Scouting. But first, remember to tell us if you know
someone who should step into the Scouter Spotlight.

Now, meet Rick Bragga
of Richmond, Va.. Rick wears several hats in Scouting—not to mention some crazy
sunglasses, as you can see in the photograph he sent us. Rick serves as a
chairman on several boards with the Heart of Virginia Council. He also does
great work on national-level committees and as chairman of the Philmont
Training Center Task Force.

Rick spent 10 years in Scouting as a youth and later was
named a Distinguished Eagle Scout, putting him on a list that includes
President Gerald Ford and astronaut Neil Armstrong.

As if that weren’t enough, he’s also a fairly accomplished
photographer. He has twice won honorable mention in Scouting magazine’s photo contest, first in 2004 and again
in 2006 (scroll down on each page to see his photos).

Read on to hear Rick’s take on the program.

Tenure in Scouting:
51 years as a boy and adult.

Scouting family: Daughter,
Kelsey, 18, earned the Girl Scout Silver Award and has served on staff at the
Philmont Training Center.

your favorite Scouting memory?

I have several, including making
Mother’s Day gifts as a Cub Scout, having arrow points on my Cub Scout shirt so
low they were below my belt, enjoying great outdoor experiences every month
with my troop, and serving one summer during college on the staff at Philmont.
Each summer for the past decade it’s been sharing the Philmont Training Center
with my wife, Debbie, and daughter, Kelsey. I’ve enjoyed being there with
fabulous faculty members, enthusiastic staff, and some great Scouter

does Scouting mean to you?

Scouting has been my life since I was a
Cub Scout. Actually, it’s been a life and a lifestyle. It’s a way to grow, a
way to know, and the opportunity to shape the future while repaying those who
gave me so much as a youth.

will you celebrate the BSA’s 100th Anniversary?

For me, 2010 will be a jam-packed year as I am chairing a national
committee and serving as chairman of the Heart of Virginia Council’s 100th
Anniversary Committee. Things kick off with Scout month and other great
activities, followed by being on the staff of the 2010 Boy Scout Jamboree.
Following the jamboree, we will be doing our best to assure that every boy who
comes in during the fall roundup feels like he’s a part of the anniversary

would you improve Scouting?

I would find ways to identify, involve
and engage former Scouts and their families so that everyone finds their way
back to Scouting at some level. There’s a place for everyone—no matter what
your circumstances. As good as Scouting is, we have room for more Scouts and
continued improvement. Too often we are hesitant to tell the Scouting story
when we see an opening. Scouting is the greatest youth program ever created. We
need to take every opportunity to showcase our successes and shout them from
the rooftops whenever we can.

Thanks to Rick for his interesting
story. We’ll return next week for another Scouter Spotlight.

About Bryan Wendell 3281 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.