“Over the last year, the council has been increasing its outreach towards Eagle Scouts that have graduated with our councils in the last few years,” said Shaun Caruana, who works as a development officer for the GNYBSC.
The scheduled guest speaker at the event is Eddy Petersen, a first senior vice president and appraisal officer with New York Community Bancorp and someone who has been involved with the Scouts for the past 35 years.
He was selected to speak at the Long Island City event because he, in his own words, “always wanted to promote the participation of Eagles in the council and scouting today.”
“For the better part of the last 20 years, I have been involved with Troop 18 in College Point” said Petersen in an email interview. “Our troop was fortunate to have good leadership and has been around since 1935. We are also fortunate to have had 55 scouts earn the Eagle Scout award, the first in 1967, with approximately 20 having earned it during my time with the troop.”
Petersen further explained why the GNYBSC has been holding outreach events in the past year with increasing frequency.
“These receptions are being held in each of the five boroughs and are meant to reach out to Eagles who may not be active at the present time to bring them back to scouting and to build up a reserve of Eagle Scouts who can meet going forward and provide support for each other and the Scouting program,” he said.
Having earned his Eagle Scout badge in January of 1978, Petersen said a person's life is forever changed by the achievement.
“Once an Eagle, always an Eagle,” Petersen said. “When you are awarded the Eagle Scout medal, it marks you going forward to those who know you. When you act, you do so according to the Scout Oath and Laws, which provide continual guidance.”