Scouts honor BCCC president

Published 1:00 am Sunday, February 27, 2011

Friends of Scouting leaders Phil Holloman, Mike Gwynn and Billy Gurkin look on as Win Martin displays a Scout uniform worn to the 1957 National Jamboree by David McLawhorn (left), the 2011 Distinguished Citizen recipient. (Submitted Photo)

Beaufort County Community College President, David McLawhorn, was recently named 2011 Distinguished Citizen for the Blackbeard District, East Carolina Council, Boy Scouts of America.

The Distinguished Citizen Award is presented annually to an individual who, in the “Spirit of Scouting,” unselfishly supports a diversity of people in their physical, mental and spiritual development so they may be constructive members of society.

“In making the decision of who to honor in 2011, we knew that Dr. McLawhorn is positively influencing a large group of people,” said Blackbeard District Committee member Paul Spruill. “David lives the values and ideals of Scouting including persistence and the ability to build consensus for worthwhile and meaningful projects. Becoming a leader in scouting required personal sacrifice as has the untold hours of community service given by Dr. McLawhorn. We are proud of his dedication to the movement of Scouting as well as to the office of President in the community college in which he serves.”

McLawhorn’s roots in scouting run deep. As a 13-year-old scout, McLawhorn attended the 1957 National Scout Jamboree at Valley Forge, Penn.

“Attending the 1957 National Scout Jamboree at Valley Forge afforded me an opportunity to meet scouts from other states as well as other nations,” McLawhorn said. “As we traded Scout badges and visited around camp fires, I noted that even though there were different languages and accents spoken, we all shared a common bond that was a result of the values taught to us by our Scout leaders. Tolerance and respect for the customs and beliefs of others were values that I saw evidence of everywhere I went on the hallowed grounds of Valley Forge. One lesson I took with me was that people from diverse cultures can indeed work, play, and scout together peacefully.”

As president of BCCC, McLawhorn has championed educational accessibility for all people to give them the opportunity to become contributing members of society. His leadership approach was influenced by his former scoutmasters.

“Reminiscing over my scouting days, I vividly recall the leadership style of my scoutmasters, that of leading by example,” McLawhorn said. “Scoutmaster Doug Woolard would never ask one of his scouts to do a task or exhibit a character trait that he had not demonstrated for us. That leadership style has served me well in my National Guard and community college careers.

“I learned the importance and value of teamwork through all of my scouting activities. Camping was an especially great learning experience and provided countless opportunities to develop and hone teamwork skills. Mundane things like learning to be patient and wait your turn were values that were enhanced throughout my scouting career. Many of the values that I hold dear today were cultivated and nurtured by adherence to the Boy Scout Motto and Promise.”

The Distinguished Citizen Award reception will be March 24 at the Turnage Theater in Washington.

“We greatly appreciate this regional celebration of Dr. McLawhorn’s achievements by ‘Friends of Scouting’ attending this reception, which also provides crucial funds for the continued growth of the scouting movement here in Blackbeard District,” said event chairman Phil Holloman. “We are sure you’ll enjoy the evening.”

Advance tickets for the reception are available to the public through March 16 from the East Carolina Council (ECC).

For more information, visit the Blackbeard District of East Carolina Council online at or contact Lucy Grist at 252-946-5552 or