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KeystoneCubmaster

How to ease out a chartered org rep?

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I am the Cubmaster of a fairly new (5 years old), but large (58 kids) Pack at my church.  I will be handing over  the CM reigns to another parent next year as my youngest son crosses over.  Our Committee Chair is doing the same thing for the same reason.  We have a replacement identified for her as well.  We have a great bunch of den leaders, and a couple of  dependable committee members, including a treasurer, so the Pack is in good shape.

The fly in the ointment is our Chartered Org Rep.  He helped to organize the Pack with me and our CC.  He was a den leader for his son's den, and his son crossed over last year.  Instead of moving on to be  involved with his son's Troop, he's stayed on with the Pack, expanding the Chartered Org Rep role.  He is an older father, and is a stickler for rules and regulations.   He got into arguments with several fathers at  the Pinewood Derby last year over axle issues.   He insists that everyone fill out waiver forms when dens visit grocery stores (for  Cast Iron Chef, etc.).  He interrupts our otherwise lively  Pack meetings with 15 minute BSA PowerPoint presentations.

All this is to say that he has contributed a lot to the Pack, but the incoming CM has asked how we can get the Chartered Org  rep to step down and move on.  He rubs a lot of the families the wrong way, and full 30% of our time is spent putting out his fires.

Any thoughts on getting him to agree to step down?   If he won't, is there anyway to force him down?  Could the pastor just pick another chartered org rep?

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Typically the COR is not directly involved with the unit operations as a COR.  Seems this COR wants to be the CM or CC, he may want to be large and in charge because that's what he wants to do and NOT what you need or want him to do.

The Chartered Organization Representative (COR) is the direct contact between the unit and the Chartered Organization. This individual is also the organization's contact with the District Committee and the Local Council. ... If the chartered organization has more than one unit, one representative serves them all.

Nothing in that involves direct unit operations / program

There is a pretty good guide - https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/04-113.pdf

Below is sort of what they are supposed to do, run program is not really one of these.

❑ Serve as a member of the unit Key 3 team and meet together several times a year.
❑ Serve as a liaison between your units, your organization, and the council structure.
❑ Encourage unit leaders and committee members to take advantage of training opportunities and to regularly attend district roundtables.
❑ Promote well-planned unit programs.
❑ Organize units to serve the youth needs of your organization and the community.
❑ Promote the recruitment of new members.
❑ See that youth participants and adult volunteers advance from one program phase to the next.
❑ Assist with annual unit charter renewal.
❑ Suggest unit Good Turns for your organization.
❑ Encourage unit committee meetings.
❑ Encourage the pursuit of Journey to Excellence performance.
❑ inform and engage organization leaders and members.
❑ Encourage active outdoor unit programs.
❑ Emphasize advancement and recognition.
❑ Secure district help when needed.
❑ Use approved unit finance policies.
❑ Encourage recognition of leaders.
❑ Cultivate resources to support your organization’s units.
❑ Represent your organization on the council and district levels.
❑ Serve on your council’s relationship committees when asked

Edited by Jameson76
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What  Jameson76 said...   The COR is the voting (!) member of the Council , and as such can have a very  important role in Council policy and operations.   It is sad that most CORs do not take THAT role seriously.  This has led to many after the fact mini scandals in some BSA Councils.  

Since the COR is the COR for ALL the Scout units sponsored by your CO, maybe a conversation with the Troop leadership, too?   Are they having any complaints there?  

I  think a friendly sit down with the COR and some other parents might be good, clear the air, etc.  Maybe include your Unit Commish, if you have a loyal one, ?  Coffee and peach cobbler ?

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Our church only charters our pack.  We send most of our boys to a Troop chartered by a different church of the same denomination.   I was new to Scouting when we started the pack, and it wasn't until my older son crossed over and I got involved with his Troop did I realize that a Chartered Org Rep was not really a day-to-day operational position.  The Chartered Org rep's son joined another Troop, and my sense is that there is not as big a role for him as he would like.

Maybe I will sit down with him and the incoming CM- with  peach cobbler- to see if he would agree to move on.

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6 minutes ago, KeystoneCubmaster said:

Our church only charters our pack.  We send most of our boys to a Troop chartered by a different church of the same denomination.   I was new to Scouting when we started the pack, and it wasn't until my older son crossed over and I got involved with his Troop did I realize that a Chartered Org Rep was not really a day-to-day operational position.  The Chartered Org rep's son joined another Troop, and my sense is that there is not as big a role for him as he would like.

Maybe I will sit down with him and the incoming CM- with  peach cobbler- to see if he would agree to move on.

Well, maybe not "move on", just take on the real COR  responsibilities.   and...    Maybe to start a ScoutsBSA Troop?   Female?   Council chair for the XYZ committee?   District Camporee organizer?   District eNews writer/composer/editor?  

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File this under "Be careful what you wish for."

4 hours ago, KeystoneCubmaster said:

...  If he won't, is there anyway to force him down?  Could the pastor just pick another chartered org rep?

The only folks who can select a different COR is the CO. So, yes, the institution head (IH) can, on behalf of the CO replace him. However, your denomination might order its churches differently than you are assuming ...

1) The pastor may not be the IH. In our CO, a Presbyterian church, the clerk of session (chairman of the board) is the IH, and he/she is obliged to the seated elders of the church (the board) of which the Pastor is the moderator.

2) Even in churches where the pastor signs as IH, he/she may still be obligated to work with the congregation to select a new COR.

3) Many churches do not have a vast depth of volunteers.* Without a volunteer pool, you might get saddled with a COR who does your successor no favors.

In other words, things can get messy fast.

So, before you go that route, that coffee & cobbler is a really, really good idea.

*My church realized this about itself, and began herding young adults to classes on churchman-ship (my word, not theirs) and talking-to-strangers (again, my word) instead of the usual comfy self-absorbing (again my description) disciplines of tithing, fasting, prayer, devotion, and suffering. Still, I'm not entirely sure that it would be able to call forth a COR if it sponsored a BSA unit.

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Hi @KeystoneCubmaster,

I'm a big believer that forcing a senior leader transition in a pack or troop is fraught with problems.  It leads to hurt feelings and politics - never a good thing.  I'm also a big believer that you have to look for the good in volunteers - even a COR.   

I'd try to handle this by developing an open working relationship between the key 3.  Do you all meet regularly as a group?  In that forum do you all speak honestly with each other?  I'd use that forum to work out differences of approach.  There, be brutally honest with each other.  But, outside that forum - have each other's back.  

On the specific issues you mentioned:

- stickler for rules - embrace this.  Yeah, no one likes rules, but they become accustomed to them.

- taking over at Pack meetings - in that key 3 meeting, I'd be honest with him.  "Hey Joe - showing those presentations at Pack meetings is really boring.  We shouldn't do that.  Also - you jumping in undermines my leadership as Cubmaster.  If you want the floor, let's arrange it ahead of time."

- fighting with parents at the PWD - "Hey Joe - Tom is our PWD chair.  It's his call on rules.  It confuses things that you jump in on decisions.  We really need to empower him to be in charge.  You shouldn't engage with parents on that.  Instead, please refer questions to Tom."

As Cubmaster, I had some real difficult conversations with our COR.  Because we were honest and direct with each other n private, yet supported each other in public - we left the roles great friends.

 

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