This is my third Mother’s Day with Girl Scouts and it is a celebration I always relish. Our movement is led in large part by mothers, our volunteers. It is a day that is a must to celebrate. We celebrate the vision, strength, and compassion of our mothers. A popular book called “Tough Mothers” focuses on 5 incredible mothers. The author Jason Porath comments on a common characteristic of mothers: “an innate fierceness that drives them to nurture, safeguard, fight, and sacrifice for the most important things that matter to them.” After looking back on the last year with all our challenges and the uphill climb of COVID, I can honestly shout out…our volunteer-mothers are innately tough, and this Council is a strong council on the strength of our mothers. So this Mother’s Day, I celebrate our volunteer-mothers for being our backbone that never bent over the last year under intense pressure. With our membership needle finally moving in the right direction, I can confidently proclaim our Council stood tall even in the darkest of the night.
I acknowledge we are a small Council, which is why it is even more important for us to show strength. We have a little room for error. Having just celebrated Star Wars Day “May the Fourth Be With You,” I know a lot of Girl Scouts are Star wars fans. For my Mother’s Day analogy, however, I want to use another science fiction movie The Guardians of the Galaxy. The movie chronicles a ragtag band of heroic castaways who come together to save the galaxy. With our membership base shrinking since the mid-1990s, our Girl Scout movement has become a small cast of leaders who fan out with taking action projects to save the world. To that point, I honored a Silver Award Girl Scout Kayolynne Hitt this week who sewed a multitude of masks for patients of a cancer institute. Her masks are so in demand she is working hard to produce more for the cancer patients. She is helping to save her small part of the world. Our Girl Scouts show courage, innovation, and fortitude as they go forth and change the world. With our market share of Girls at a small 2 percent, we are indeed a small band of leaders who show no signs of bending. Last August, our small group of Girl Scouts and volunteers distributed 18,000 boxes of cookies to military members, health care workers, and first responders in less than seven days. We are set to do that again this May. That historic feat, the speed, the breadth, sounds like superhero status to me especially with as small as we are. Notably, it is our volunteer mothers who give us that resolve to do anything that matters to us. At the end of The Guardians of Galaxy movie, when the villain finally realizes he has been defeated by this ragtag group of heroes, they shout out to him in unison “We’re the Guardians of the Galaxy.” It is an exclamation mark to the movie that finishes it out on a high note. Good over evil. I submit that as we rally a comeback to bring Girl Scouts back in full force, our tough and optimistic Girl Scouts are today’s real Guardians of the Galaxy. After all, what other organization has such a noble mission as “to make the world a better place!” And to other mothers—they are the lead superhero. We couldn’t be both tough and optimistic without having our mothers set the bar high. It is fitting the lead female science fiction in the movie, Gamora, has green skin. Green is our color…we are Guardians of the Galaxy. Call me “High on Believing” to quote the signature song of the movie, ‘high on believing’ in Girl Scouts and our iconic volunteer mothers! Happy Mother’s Day—you are the stars of our show…our volunteer mothers who make green be the color of choice!