WEST VIRGINIA – Michael Huneke, Forest Stewarship program coordinator for the Northeastern Area, received the William T. Hornaday Gold Medal award from the Boy Scouts of America on July 27, 2017, as part of this year’s National Jamboree, held at the Summit Betchel Reserve, West Virginia.
Boy Scouts award the gold medal to adult scouters or venturing leaders for outstanding service in natural resource conservation and youth education at the regional, national, or international level. Central to the selection process is the influence the nominee has had on youth and educational programs emphasizing sound stewardship of our nation’s natural resources and environmental improvement. Since 1975, BSA has only averaged one gold medal per year.
Huneke’s impact on young people in the conservation arena has been extensive for a significant number of years. He has a lifelong connection with BSA, from earning the Eagle Scout rank to serving as a Scoutmaster of Troop 124 in Carney, Maryland. He contributed to the 2016 edition of the Boy Scout Handbook and is currently serving as the Chairman of the Conservation Trail at the 2017 National Boy Scout Jamboree.
From working as a wildland firefighter in Maryland to leading the way in the creation of the National Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, Huneke worked tirelessly to ensure the preservation and conservation of our nation’s forests and grasslands. Throughout his career, he prepared more than 500 Forest Stewardship Plans and coordinated the planting of more than a quarter million trees.
“It is an extreme honor to receive the William T. Hornaday Gold Medal from the Boy Scouts of America.” Said Huneke. “For the past 25 years, my passion has been working to share my love of forestry and conservation with youth in the Scouting program, changing the world- one Scout at a time.”