The motto of Venturing, the BSA’s program for older youth, is “Lead the Adventure.”

Jadah Foltz doesn’t just recite that motto at crew meetings. She lives it every single day.

Jadah, a member of Crew 288 of the BSA’s North Florida Council, is the first person in the history of her council to receive the Summit Award, Venturing’s highest honor.

“Jadah is an amazing Venturer,” says Eli Rivera, North Florida Council’s camping director. “She’s a great leader in Scouting, and she will continue to accomplish great things in her future.”

Jadah has been an active member of Crew 288 for four years. She has served as crew president and treasurer. She also stepped up to lead her council’s Venturing Officers Association as secretary and then president — efforts that earned her the council-level Venturing Leadership Award.

Jadah’s adult Advisor on the Venturing Officers Association was Ashley Friesen, who got to watch Jadah’s leadership in action.

“I watched her develop from an eager but unsure teenager to a confident, strong young adult,” Friesen says. “When we meet crews from outside of our council, Jadah will sit down with them and talk about the program. I think this, more than anything else, encompasses a leader.”

I could fill many more paragraphs outlining Jadah’s achievements. She has staffed National Youth Leadership Training, Introduction to Leadership Skills for Crews and the Kodiak Challenge. She’s been on two Florida Sea Base adventures. And she’s an Ordeal member of the Order of the Arrow.

Jadah (back) and her fellow Venturers “drive a car.”

The Summit Award

Like the Eagle Scout Award in Scouts BSA and the Quartermaster Award in Sea Scouts, the Summit Award is the pinnacle achievement of Venturing.

To earn the award, Venturers must participate in qualifying adventures, fulfill leadership roles, demonstrate personal growth and complete a service project.

For her project, Jadah held a blood drive in her community. She raised awareness about the need for donations and recruited 11 donors in a single day.

“These opportunities provide experience and maturity when Venturers are given the chance to lead as individuals and as members of a team,” says Richard Basye, Jadah’s crew Advisor.

Jadah (front row, left) has participated in two adventures at Florida Sea Base.

What’s next for Jadah

Beyond her work in Scouting, Jadah is pursuing a degree in public relations at the University of North Florida. She enjoys gardening and is learning to throw clay into ceramics.

Jadah is 20, meaning her time as a youth in Venturing is coming to an end. But she plans to stay active in Scouting even after turning 21. In fact, her goal is to help others achieve their Summit Award.

“I am thankful to have reached this splendid height, and I am even more excited to see what is to come,” Jadah says. “I do not intend to give up on Leading the Adventure.”

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