Thursday, June 7, 2012

Girl Scouts Council of the Nation’s Capital CEO Lidia Soto-Harmon Chats With The Washingtonian

Girl Scouts from around the world are gathering on the National Mall, Saturday, June 9, 2012 to mark the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts of the USA. Girl Scouts Rock the Mall: 100th Anniversary Sing-Along will be the largest gathering of Girl Scouts in history. An anticipated 250,000 Girl Scouts, friends, and alumnae will gather at the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, DC to demonstrate the power of girl leadership.

In advance of Rock the Mall, The Washingtonian chatted with Girl Scouts Council of the Nation’s Capital CEO Lidia Soto-Harmon about the impact of the nonprofit on Washington and how Girl Scouts have remained relevant for a century. When asked to speak of some ways the Girl Scouts have made a difference in the Washington community, Soto-Harmon states:

"Girl Scouts in their junior or senior years of high school have the opportunity to try for a Gold Award, the highest award a scout can receive. The girls have to create a project that solves a problem or meets a need in the community, and they have to dedicate more than 80 hours to implementation. About five girls in 2012 earned their Gold Award working on STEM [science, technology, engineering, and math]-related projects and were welcomed at the White House in April. Another girl won a the award for a project that created a scholarship program for kids whose parents are incarcerated. It’s called ScholarCHIPS, and it gives $10,000 to three high school seniors each year."

Girl Scouts Rock the Mall will feature talented girl voices including The Voice finalist Erin Willett, American Idol finalist Thia Megia, the Girl Scouts of Nassau County Chorus, and “I Want to Rock the Mall” YouTube contest winner Dana Marie.

The 17-year-old singer-songwriter, a Girl Scout Ambassador, won the Girl Scouts’ “I Want to Rock the National Mall” YouTube contest for her original song, “Girl Scout Cookie Rap.” Dana Marie will take the stage June 9 to perform her winning composition.