Mike Meisenhelder has been involved with boy scouts all of his life — seven years as a child, and nearly 30 years as an adult volunteer.
For his years of dedication, Meisenhelder was honored last weekend with the Silver Beaver Award, the highest recognition for an adult volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America.
“The Silver Beaver Award is given to volunteers who have impacted the lives of Scouts, not only in their area, but throughout the 64 counties that make up the Lincoln Heritage Council,” said Jim Mahanes, director of marketing and communications, for the Lincoln Heritage Council of Boys Scouts of America. “Without the dedication and commitment of people like Mike, we wouldn’t be able to reach the tens of thousands of young people through scouting and give them the leadership development, adventure and life skills that Scouting offers.”
Meisenhelder currently serves as assistant Scoutmaster of Troop 3120 in Audubon District of the Lincoln Heritage Council. He retired four years ago from Gipe Automotive, where he was a purchasing agent and inventory control specialist for 33 years.
Although he was a scout as a young boy, Meisenhelder found himself involved with a boy scout troop again when his son, Jeff, wanted to join in 1990. Despite his son being grown now, Meisenhelder continues to serve Daviess County boy scouts.
“I just like to help the youth,” Meisenhelder said, adding he especially enjoys sharing how to cook and survive outdoors.
Cooking is Meisenhelder’s favorite part of scouting. He said he teaches the boys to cook just about anything in a dutch oven — including pizza, tacos and chicken and dumplings.
“Anything you can cook inside, you can cook outside,” Meisenhelder said.
The Lincoln Heritage Council serves more than 24,000 youth and adult scouts. The Council works to foster character development, worldwide citizenship, and the moral, mental and physical fitness of young people.
“People like Mike are who really make it happen,” Mahanes said.