Annual Lawn Social Recognizes Notable Community Members

Dr. Tom Nielsen and Dr. Kathy Bohn were honored with the Good Scout Award at this year’s W. D. Boyce Council Lawn Social. The annual event is held as a celebration of Scouting, recognizing exemplary individuals who contribute to the organization.

The W. D. Boyce Council was established in 1973 and covers 14 counties across central Illinois. The council’s Scouting programs prepare young people for the future by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law. Fifty years after its founding the council provides a guiding light for youth to become responsible citizens and leaders.

One of those leaders is Dr. Nielsen, who earned the title of Eagle Scout in 1974 during his senior year in high school. He later met his wife, Dr. Bohn, who although was not a Scout said, “I believe my family taught me many traits of a good Scout.” Since graduating from Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, they have been dedicated to serving the community through the Red Cross, Illinois State University, and the Boy Scouts of America.

The 2023 Lawn Social raised nearly $75,000 in donations that support the Scouting program. Thanks to the donations, the Council can offer a variety of activities that will prepare Scouts for the future. Tim Spence, who recently earned his Eagle Scout was one of the many Scouts who attended the event and spoke about his journey through Scouting. “I love Scouting and the person Scouting has turned me into…Scouting is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life,” said Spence while thanking the community for supporting him and other Scouts across McLean County.    

Scout Executive Ben Blumenberg was also in attendance, showcasing his support for the honorees. “It’s so incredible to have so many people supporting Scouting,” said Blumenberg while addressing over 150 people who attended the event. “With the money raised at the event, the Council can continue providing programs that build leadership skills among young boys and girls”.

 National Youth Leadership Training serves as one of the many opportunities that can be provided due to the generosity of community members.  “Scouting gives back to us more than we give,” said Dr. Bohn recognizing the positive impact Scouting has on the central Illinois youth. Beyond the event, it is important to continue to serve the local community and strive to be trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.