Meet the 2024 recipients of the National Venturing Leadership Award

Adventure, leadership, personal growth and service are all critical components of the BSA’s Venturing program. They’re also the perfect words to describe the principles and ideals by which this year’s recipients of the National Venturing Leadership Award have chosen to live.

This year, seven Greenshirts (the unofficial nickname inspired by Venturing’s distinctive uniform color) are being recognized for their selfless service to the Venturing program on the national level. They come from across the country, from the rocky shores of California to the sandy beaches of North Carolina.

Venturing is the BSA’s program for young men and women ages 14-21 (or 13 and completed the 8th grade). It’s operated through VenturingcCrews — units of youth and Advisors that meet on set schedules and plan activities and events.

The awards will be presented at the Philmont Training Center at the Chart. Lead. Explore. Planning for the Future of Older Youth Programs Conference July 14-20. The event is open to everyone and will be live streamed on the Venturing Facebook page.

Who has received this award in past years?

We blogged about the 2023, 202220212020201920182017 and 2016 recipients. For a list of all recipients since the award’s debut in 2000, visit this page.

Who selects the recipients?

Individuals are nominated by their peers, and a selection committee of youth Venturers and adult Advisors reviews all nominations to make the final decisions.

What do the honorees receive?

Like those who receive other national Scouting honors, these recipients gain national recognition from their peers, including other Greenshirts who understand the award’s significance. As for physical recognition, recipients are presented with a silver medallion suspended from a red and white ribbon.

What about council and territory Venturers and Advisors?

There are Venturing Leadership Awards for the council and territory levels, too. Click here for more information on those.

Who are the 2024 recipients of the National Venturing Leadership Award?

Here are the 2024 recipients, listed alphabetically, along with just a snippet of their actions.

Please join me in congratulating these seven terrific Venturers and Advisors.

A photo of Robert AveyRobert Avey

Shenandoah Area Council

Adult Recipient

  • Currently serves as the Council Service Territory 12 Advisor, which supports the execution of the Venturing program in parts of West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania.
  • Known most for supporting the Venturing programs at National and World jamborees and at the 2018 Venturingfest, specifically the event’s operation team, which kept the program moving when things didn’t go as planned.
  • Served as a commissioner for the 2023 National Jamboree in the Older Youth Programs Subcamp.

Excerpt from nomination letter:

2013 was an important year for Venturing as it was the first time Venturers were allowed to attend a National Scout Jamboree as participants, not just as staff members. Foxtrot was the first co-ed base camp, and Bob Avey served as a crew commissioner. That Jamboree had challenges, but Bob Avey rose above all the challenges to support the Venturers and the other staff. Bob was always quick to volunteer for a task, quick to smile and slow to complain. In fact, Bob never complains. Bob is truly a kind-hearted problem solver.

A photo of Ryanne FisherRyanne Fisher

Garden State Council

Youth Recipient

  • Currently serves as the National Vice President of Administration, where she has worked tirelessly on promoting council standards for Venturing excellence, taking what was collected and analyzing data to help Council Venturing Officer Associations going forward.
  • Has been a key player in the planning of the Chart. Lead. Explore. Conference at the Philmont Training Center this summer.
  • Represents the Venturing program as an Eagle Scout and Summit Award recipient who continues to enjoy and give back to the Scouting program, such as when she made a significant impact at the Women of Character Conference.

Excerpt from nomination letter:

Ryanne is always driven to complete her projects and get her “hands dirty” to make sure the job is not only done correctly and completely but thoroughly, with thought given to all aspects. She has an infectious attitude and exudes Scout spirit and servant leadership.

A photo of Patrick JamiePatrick Jaime

Golden Gate Area Council

Adult Recipient

  • Has served on the advancement and recognition pillar of the National Venturing Committee for the past 4 years.
  • Has worked on the changes to the Ranger Award, sometimes leading the charge when the team chair has had other projects going.
  • Currently serving as the Council Service Territory 3 Advisor, which supports the execution of the Venturing Program in parts of Western California.

Excerpt from nomination letter:

When Patrick first joined the Awards and Recognition Team, he brought his ideas and many years of experience. He jumped on the Ranger review process and brought lots of good ideas, honest feedback and a real sense of what Venturers want from this program. When I couldn’t make a meeting that the team agreed on, Patrick took over without missing a beat. When he wasn’t helping on the National Committee, he led the charge in his territory and helped the Venturing program take off after the change from areas. Patrick continues giving the Venturing program all he can while transitioning into an adult role.

A photo of Andrea MarronAndrea Marron

South Florida Council

Youth Recipient

  • Currently serves as the National Vice President of Territory Support for the Eastern Territories, where she supports territory presidents and Advisors in growing the Council Venturing Program.
  • Also serves as a member of the National Venturing Membership Committee, which leads the charge on growing the Venturing program across the nation.
  • Represents the Venturing program as an Eagle Scout who continues to enjoy and give back to Scouting, like when she made a powerful impact at the Women of Character Conference.

Excerpt from nomination letter:

Andrea has also been an active member of the National Venturing Membership committee by not only attending their meetings, but as the committee was putting together task forces to work on various recruiting and retention strategies, Andrea shared this information with her territories, and this resulted in most of the territory presidents volunteering to be a part of each of the task forces so that the youth voice was involved in the formulation of a final plan. Andrea epitomizes leadership and is not afraid to ask questions to help her be a better leader.

A photo of Tom McDonaldTom McDonald

East Texas Area Council

Adult Recipient

  • Has served in numerous roles in Venturing and at national events, such as in 2023, when he served as a member of the Strick Team at the Older Youth Program subcamps, where his job was to make sure everyone had a smooth, fun time at the Jamboree.
  • Has served on the program team of the National Venturing Committee, where he was an integral part of the planning process for the 2020 Venturingfest event.
  • Has been active on every level of Venturing for the past 10 years, from taking his crew to Philmont to caring for Venturers he had just met at the Jamboree as the “national chief morale officer.”

Excerpt from nomination letter:

Most Venturers in the nation are probably unaware of how significant Tom’s positive impact has been on the Venturing program. Tom never wants to be seen or be in the limelight; that is not his style. The only exception might be when he is giving out snacks, patches or prizes as the “national chief morale officer” of Venturing. Even then, Tom’s efforts are somewhat anonymous. Tom McDonald is the quintessential servant leader because he makes others around him — youth and adults — better.

A photo of Jacob SchmidtJacob Schmidt

Northern Star Council

Youth Recipient

  • Currently serves as the National Vice President of Communication, where he leveled up what the brand of the Venturing program looks like online.
  • Assisted in the development of the “Leading our Adventures” podcast as well as the “Venturing Legacy Project.”
  • Assisted on the communications team at the 2023 National Jamboree in the Older Youth Program subcamp.

Excerpt from nomination letter:

Over the past year, Jacob has made the most notable progress as a communications vice president than I have seen in multiple terms of NVOA officers. Jacob assisted Hannah Todd in starting the inaugural episode of “Leading Our Adventures — A Venturing Podcast,” which kicked off a series that thousands of Scouters have been able to consume and learn from. This project alone has taken months of their time while still in college and serving in their roles as national officers. Jacob has handled all the graphics generation and social media posts related to the podcast. Jacob has assisted in consolidating all of the Venturing social media accounts, which has been no small task.

A photo of Hannah ToddHannah Todd

Mecklenburg County Council

Youth Recipient

  • Currently serving as the National Vice President of Program, where she continues to push the boundaries of what the program looks like from a national perspective outside of in-person events.
  • Created and hosts the “Leading our Adventures” podcast that goes live every other Friday on the Venturing BSA Facebook page.
  • Created the Venturing Legacy Project, which happens every other month, the goal of which is to get Venturing crews involved in their local communities by providing service.

Excerpt from nomination letter:

Hannah is one of those youths who is infectious to be around. She takes any idea/feedback and runs. She runs so fast that sometimes it is hard for others to keep up, but before they catch up, she is already asking how to help. Working with her for a couple of years makes it easy to see how much she loves the Boy Scouts of America and all the programs it offers. Scouting runs in her veins, and she wants nothing more than to make this the best program for others. When she interacts with other youths and adults, I’ve never seen someone once walk away with anything but a smile. Hannah encompasses what being a leader in Venturing and Scouting is all about: unselfish service to others.

About Aaron Derr 448 Articles
Aaron Derr is the senior editor of Scout Life and Scouting magazines, and also a former Cubmaster and Scouts BSA volunteer.