Enrolling her children in Girl and Boy Scouts was a no-brainer for Cindy Murray.
The Clerk and PTO Treasurer, who is also a Certified Public Accountant and fills in as a teacher when needed, started in Girl Scouts back when her mother was a troop leader.
She has since remained heavily involved, serving as troop leader for the last six years, and leads both a Junior and a Brownie Troop.
The Orland Park Lions Club was looking for a Grand Marshall for the 2012 Orland Days Parade with dedicated involvement in Girl Scouts, and chose Murray after several recommendations.
“The number of nominations and the input we received about the quality and dedication Cindy gives to the Orland Park Girl Scouts made her an obvious choice,” said Orland Park Lions Club President Todd Probasco in a release.
Patch spoke with Murray about what’s kept her involved with Scouts, what she has learned from the efforts and competing with modern busy schedules.
Patch: How did you get involved in Girl Scouts?
Cindy Murray: I was a girl scout as a child, and my mother was a troop leader. When I had children I knew I wanted them to be part of it. I learned so much during that time that there wasn’t a question. I just wanted to get them involved. My oldest is in 5th grade, so she’s been in for six years. I have four children, and three are involved in scouts. One is in 7th grade, and he’s been in for seven years. I also have another daughter who is in 2nd grade. And I have a kindergartener, who’s eagerly waiting to join. He keeps asking ‘how much a longer?’ He sees the fun everyone else has and wants to join in. So we’re already recruiting from the current kindergarten.
What have you learned from the time spent with scouts, whether as a child or now as a troop leader?
Every child is unique. They all teach you about yourself as well. That’s why I love spending time with them. I’m always learning more from them. They are learning the different parts of what’s out there in the world that they may not see otherwise, and that in of itself is rewarding to see. Everyone is so busy today that this gives children chances to see and do what they otherwise might not be able to experience.
What did you think when the Lions Club asked you to be Grand Marshall?
I was very excited when they told me I was Grand Marshall. I had no idea. I’m not sure who all nominated me. They called me, and I was quite shocked. It’s exciting. It’s a wonderful community here. I was very honored. There are so many great leaders out there and so many people in scouts, I was surprised, but really honored.
How would you describe what happens in Scouts for people who don’t know?
The basics of it are it teaches them to be leaders, to be confident in themselves, and be good citizens, which is very important. Those are the main parts, but there’s so much more they get to see and do for those concepts to sink in. It depends on their troop and how much they want to get involved in. If everything doesn’t fit in with a family’s schedule it’s OK. Even if they only do a little, it can help. We’re a busy society so it’s good to do any of it, just to try it. Not every girl and boy can to come to everything. I just like to see them get involved somehow.
Do you see any challenges looking forward for Scouts, given how busy people are?
It’s harder as they get older with all of the other activities they can pursue. There’s nothing wrong with other extra curriculars, but I’d like to see kids get as much as they can out of the unique experiences. I want to make sure we keep it fun. Kids also get peer pressure to get into so many different things. I just want them to be proud of who they are. That’s really what I’d like to continue seeing, that confidence in them. So we need to continue making it fun and worthwhile so they stick with it.