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Honorary Girl Scout Troop formed to include S.C. House of Representative’s ladies

Posted: May 26, 2011 2:21 p.m.
Updated: May 27, 2011 5:00 a.m.

Women from the House of Representatives came together on May 11 to form the first-ever South Carolina Honorary Girl Scout Troop. Given the troop number 1912, in recognition of the year Girl Scouts was founded, the membership is made up of all 16 women in the House of Representatives.  The two Girl Scout councils in the state, Girl Scouts of Eastern South Carolina and Girl Scouts of South Carolina – Mountains to Midlands, hosted the late afternoon tea across the street from the State Capitol at the Capital City Club.

According to Kim Hutzell, President/CEO, Girl Scouts of South Carolina – Mountains to Midlands, the two councils, which were selected as advocacy champions by the Girl Scouts of the USA last year, formed Honorary Girl Scout Troop 1912 so that Girl Scouts can work in partnership with women members of the state legislature to substantively address issues that impact girls.

“The primary focus of Girl Scout programming is developing leadership skills,” she said. “We are delighted to include this special group of bipartisan women leaders whose contributions as policymakers and role models for all girls in our state are an invaluable asset as we work towards our mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.”

The program included remarks by Rep. Laurie Funderburk, Chairwoman, South Carolina General Assembly Women’s Caucus and Phonecia Hughes, a Columbia-area Girl Scout Ambassador and Gold Award recipient.

In the remarks from Loretta Graham, CEO, Girl Scouts of Eastern South Carolina, she addressed the Girl Scouts’ legislative agenda which includes four areas of interest:  promoting girls’ physical, social and emotional health; increasing girls’ involvement in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM); advancing girls and leadership development; and, strengthening financial literacy. She stated, “Within those categories, we have identified the issue of Healthy Media Images as especially stressful to girls and one which, with the help of our elected officials, we believe we can make an impact.”
Members of Honorary Girl Scout Troop 1912 are Rep. Rita Allison, R-Spartanburg; Rep. Joan Brady, R-Richland; Rep. Mia Butler Garrick, D-Richland; Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, D-Orangeburg; Rep. Chandra E. Dillard, D-Greenville; Rep. Shannon Smith Erickson, R-Beaufort; Rep. Laurie Slade Funderburk, D-Kershaw; Rep. Phyllis Henderson, R-Greenville; Rep. Jenny Anderson Horne, R-Dorchester; Rep. Patsy G. Knight, D-Dorchester; Rep. Deborah A. Long, R-Lancaster; Rep. Elizabeth R. Munnerlyn, D-Marlboro; Rep. Wendy K. Nanney, R-Greenville; Rep. Denny Neilson, D-Darlington; Rep. J. Anne Parks, D-Greenwood; Rep. Anne Johnston Thayer, R-Anderson.  Also included is Phyllis Beighley, Exec. Dir., SC General Assembly Women’s Caucus.

For 99 years, Girl Scouting has helped girls develop positive values and become active, responsible leaders in their communities. With emphasis on personal growth and leadership development through service to others, Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. The two South Carolina councils serve nearly 30,000 Girl Scout members – approximately 21,000 girls and 9,000 adults.

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