Elmira College Alumna Nominated for Prestigious Award
June 9th, 2009
Barbara Corti Herrmann ’62 was recently nominated for the Facing Race Ambassador Award from the Saint Paul Foundation for her work with the Northern Star Council of the Boy Scouts of America.
For the last three years, Herrmann has served as co-chair of the Diversity Committee for the Northern Star Council of the Boy Scouts of America. This Council is the second largest in the nation, serving 114,000 boys and 23,000 adults. Herrmann and her committee have used Facing Race training materials to organize and conduct trainings—five to date—for the Boy Scouts of America’s Board, staff and volunteers. They also developed a web site with resources, training suggestions and a scorecard that serves as a blueprint for the next year. Under Herrmann’s leadership, the Northern Star Council has created a diversity award that can be earned by Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venture Scouts and adult volunteers. Herrmann also led the Diversity Committee in the development and implementation of an organization-wide survey instrument to identify incidents of racial harassment and other possible forms of racial bias and discrimination at council camps. She has facilitated dialogues using The Saint Paul Foundation’s New Conversations About Race and Racism™ discussion tool at council training events.
“Through anti-racism work, I have seen how cultural and racial differences can be a huge barrier to involvement in Scouting,” says Herrmann. “One of my biggest challenges is getting others to realize that addressing racism is everyone’s business.”
Since 2002, the Facing Race initiative of The Saint Paul Foundation has generated discussions among people of all backgrounds to provide a greater understanding of race issues and what the community as a whole can do to make it a more open and equitable society. The Facing Race Ambassador Award was created to honor individuals who excel in creating opportunities for people of all races to understand the impact of racism.