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When was the last time you had contact with your Unit Commisioner?

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I'm with you Abel....


We had a really active one the past couple of years; he would show up at meetings at least once a month, talk about upcoming events, pass on info not picked up at RT, etc. This was the first UC that I considered "a friend of the unit" since taking over as SM in 1997. Before him, we might get a visit once a year, never really knowing who that person was, and that was for Friends of Scouting. This put a bad taste in many of the leaders mouths about only seeing district people when they wanted money.


Unfortunately, our very active UC had to step aside due to medical reasons. I haven't seen or heard from the new one since the previous one stepped down in late October, 2010. To be honest, I really don't know who are new one is...maybe I need to go have a cup of coffee with the DC to find out what's happenin'.....

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As a UC for 2 troops and a pack, I aim for one physical visit each month, usually alternating between unit meetings and committee meetings. If there is something important that I need to go over (such as the mandatory youth protection training), I visit the very next committee meeting. All 3 units take the summer off, so no June-August for the pack and no July/August for the troops (they both meet until summer camp).


In between, I stay in contact with the unit leaders and committee chairs via email, and I make sure I am on all their email distribution lists so that I can keep up with what they are doing.


I have a standing invitation to the pack B&G and Pinewood Derby, and I try to attend those every year as long as I don't have a scheduling conflict. I attend as many CoHs for the troops as possible, which I also have a standing invitation to.


I have also been invited on overnight outings, but have never participated.


I would never show up anywhere uninvited.



Basementdweller wrote "I asked him to leave after he wanted to do a uniform inspection. Another scouter whose perceived power has gone to their head. "


According to the Commissioner annual plan materials, we are supposed to help units perform uniform inspections twice a year, which involves scheduling it ahead of time with unit leadership. That said, if the unit doesn't want to do it, we should not push the issue.



(This message has been edited by nolesrule)

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Is lining up for a uniform inspection to check and make sure the kiddos have all the do-dads and in the right place necessary? Can't this be accomplished by observation while carrying on a friendly and healthy conversation with the scouters and parents?


Maybe I'm wrong, but the way I understand it is the UC is not to take notes on the unit he/she is visiting until after the meeting is over. The UC is to be a help not a harm to the unit. Our district is beginning to implement the use of UCs after an unknown number of years without them. We've gotten by without them (good, bad or indifferent). Now we are going to see the benefits of having them - I think on the positive side.

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In my district currently there is a Dist Commissioner and one Unit Comm, who is LDS and serves the LDS units, so in essence we have no UC's and the Key 3 and unit leaders seem just fine with the arrangement. Is that good or bad?


The DComm and DE have tried unsuccessfully for three years to recruit UC's and to quote them, "nobody wants the position."

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Never had a 1:1 with our crew's UC. We shake hands at roundtable and other events. He never visited a meeting.


He dropped me a line to have me call in to the DE about a parent complaint regarding one of my youth. He was not involved in the conversation, never offered to meet with me and the parent or youth in question. Did that on my own, and sent a note directly to the DE about my plan. It was a lousy month.


Would his partnership have helped? I don't know. He's a nice enough guy for what it's worth. We're partly the victims of our troop burning bridges with the old UC. Everyone would rather keep a respectful distance.

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The answers to the question are all over the place. I just wanted to know what I should expect from a UC.

I saw ours 1 time in two years. After calling the Scout office 4 times in a month trying to track down our recharter paperwork. The UC finally showed up with it in mid December. He showed up with the DC and introduced theirselves at our christmas party. The DC said "I am usually invited to troop functions like this." I said " I would have if I knew who you where." He didn't care for that answer but I tell it like it is.

The UC was in his mid 20's,very unorganized and dressed very sloppy.He was not a good representation of how a scout should dress.

While filling out the paperwork I found why the came. It ask if your Troop has been visited by the UC and DC.

I know the DE very well and if I need something, I just go to him.


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sbemis --


And if he has a young man in the unit - he should not be a UC for the unit.


But, that's me, being picky.


It's not easy being a Commissioner. You have no "authority" and your real role is to be there to help when needed. How do you know you are needed? You need to be there!


I guess we are fortunate. We have a good Commissioner Corps, and we actively and continuously recruit. We try to limit the number of units a Commissioner services to no more than two (and we prefer one) but sometimes, we have folks covering more while we get a new Commissioner up-to-speed. Having had the "opportunity" to serve 18 units at one time, trust me, it was no fun.


Right now, we have 8 traditional units without a Commissioner - so, as District Commissioner I work with them in addition to my normal units. The other 60 traditional units & 4 Explorer posts all have UCs.


But we do our best to make sure our UCs have all the resources they need to get the job done. We encourage them to attend training, commissioner conferences, and commissioner college -- plus we publish a weekly newsletter on what is happening in the district -- and starting next month, we will be live streaming our Commissioners' Meeting for those cannot make the drive in time after work. We provide all our meeting agendas and handouts as digital files - so if you miss a meeting, you still get all the info, and your units don't miss out.


Thus far, in my conversations with unit leaders and committee chairs, everyone has been pleased with the level of service they are receiving from our Commissioner Corps.


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I am not opposed to doing uniform inspections. The UC comes in the door unannounced and starts roaming around the CO until confronted by one of the Den leaders.....He introduced himself, my response was "since when? and how's come I wasn't notified?"



We are poor, most of the boys don't have uniforms, we buy them from thrift stores and we buy the returns from the scout shop.......



he should have looked around and noticed that of 60 boys maybe 30 have uniforms. Please, you want to make my life more difficult.



I hinted to eliza instead of spending $300 on a klondike sled the money could be better spent uniforming my Pack.

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It's discouraging to read so many comments from people who have had negative experiences with their Commissioner or don't have one at all.


For those who are unhappy, perhaps you should recruit a UC with which you would be happy.


I took over from a Cubmaster who had had that position six years. He became Werbelos Den Leader for two boys, and served as Webelos leader until they crossed over into the Troop our pack usually feeds.


His son is also in that troop, and needless to say it's important for such troops to keep track of what is going on in their feeder pack(s). What better way than to have someone in the troop serving as the pack Unit Commissioner, especially someone with a long history with the pack?


So as you have Cub Scouts aging out of Cub Scouts, why not look over the parents who have served the pack and decide which one(s) might be abloe to provide useful feedback to your pack or another pack?


You can ask them to fill out the adult leader application and turn it in to your District Commissioner or District Executive with the suggestion that they be made a UC.


Many Districts are woefully short of UCs and would be delighted to act on likely prospects.

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Basementdweller, I may be a UC, but if that's how it went down, I'd be right there with ya.


When our DC tells us it's inspection time of year, we are told to schedule them with our units. But if a unit has no interest in holding a uniform inspection, we can't force the issue.


It's not our unit, and that's something every commissioner needs to remember.



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It occurs to me that your Unit Commissioner isn't the only person you might expect to see at a unit meeting or committee meeting.



Our Council Executive regularly appears at Council training events and quarterly council meetings of district volunteers. Council professional staff are there too.


The Council Executive and the head of the professional staff makes tours of district meetings as well. Usually you can expect to see them every couple of years.


Perhaps units should have similar expectations for District Executives, District Chairman and District Commissioners.


Our DE gets around for FOS and recruiting nights pretty regularly, but how often does your District Commissioner or District Chairman appear at a unit meeting of yours?




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