The Quad-City Times recently published an editorial titled “Sacred memories vs. real estate,” (March 19) that stated “no one can accuse the (Girl Scout) regional council’s board of trying to pull a fast one.” Here is some background that will demonstrate the lack of transparency demonstrated by the Girl Scouts of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois leadership.

Since council realignment, CEO Diane Nelson has attempted to close camps. This was first demonstrated two years ago when leadership attempted to close Camp Tahigwa with no consultation or discussion with the council. Thanks to a letter-writing campaign, this didn’t occur.

Many members of the property committee and the board of directors have not visited all the camps, nor sought sufficient feedback from council members about the camps.

The council continues to misrepresent the data. Ms. Nelson’s letter on the closing of the camps stated “the girls have voted with their lack of participation at camp,” yet their own reports state camp usage has gone up.

Council members have attempted to engage GSEIWI leadership on alternative strategies to maintain the camps (fundraising attempts, partnerships with conversation groups, etc.) that Ms. Nelson has refused to discuss.

The board is disproportionately comprised of members from the Quad-City area. Only 3 of the 25 are from the former Conestoga Council and home of Camp Tahigwa. Without adequate representation on the board, how can areas with camps represent their Girl Scout community they are meant to serve?

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Kathy Hageman

Lawler, Iowa

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