Karen Brown's Girl Scout history began in 1947 as a Brownie and continued as she earned her First-Class Award. She had great adventures as a girl - Maybe it was her trip to the Girl Guide camp at Doe Lake, Canada as a Girl Scout Mariner that first ignited her interest in the global aspect of this movement? As an adult, she found a love for international Girl Scout events and the World Centers at Pax Lodge, Our Cabaña, Our Chalet and Sangam. She brought back the culture and traditions to girls and volunteers in the U.S. by teaching about World Thinking Day and sharing songs she learned from Girl Scout sisters around the globe. And she’s chaired Friends of Sangam to help support our World Center in India and provide more opportunities for girls and volunteers there.
Karen started three Girl Scout troops in remote Annette Island, Alaska before serving as a troop leader for additional troops in Connecticut and Maryland. She joined the staff of Camp Tuckerman, eventually serving as co-director for almost ten years. Karen continued to serve girls as a troop leader and coordinating trips – like amazing adventures to National Center West in Wyoming! But in 1977 she added a new interest – training adult volunteers. By 1984 Karen had started your Sing into Fall weekends – creating opportunities for volunteers to gain skills and confidence in leading the kinds of Girl Scout singalongs that have kept our girls “Still Singing After All These Years”!
In 1986, Karen joined the staff of the council where she served until 2003 – proving to be a valued member of the team establishing exciting new STEM opportunities for girls. She also led the charge to make a Girl Scout songbook, and then continued to make updated new editions – many of which are lovingly dogeared and worn - still tucked into backpacks of Girl Scouts around the nation. Karen took her expertise in songbooks abroad to compile a Pax Lodge songbook and renew the copyrights for the Sangam songbook, and also compiled CDs to go with them - as well as a CD to accompany the Our Chalet songbook.
In 1994, Karen had an amazing idea for a “Singalong Service” where volunteers and event coordinators could request song leaders who could come to lead singalongs for them! She’s led singing on the National Mall marking the 85th, 90th and 95th anniversaries of Girl Scouting with thousands of girls and adults attending – spectacular events exemplifying the strength of Girl Scout traditions.
Her love of the universal language of song brings people together so they can learn and continue the Girl Scout traditions that have made our movement so strong throughout the world.