Profile: Fred Meijering
used to fly helicopters for the National Guard
didn't want to do that for the rest of his
life, however, and one day a job ad caught his
interest with somewhat vague details.
mentioned in the interview that he
was a Boy Scout himself, from ages eight to 14, he
was well on his
way to career path that he
never saw coming.
That was 18 years ago.Meijering (pronounced MY-ring) is now Scout Executive for the Quivira Council, with 30 Kansas counties under its umbrella and Wichita as its headquarters.He is in full career stride at age 43, and it would not surprise his colleagues if he were someday president of the entire Boy Scouts of America organization.
...Meijering started his career at the Mid-America Council in Omaha, where he was an executive for the same Council Bluffs, Iowa region he grew up in.
The people who watched him as a 6-foot-6 high school basketball star were the same ones he
went to for donations and volunteering.
"I had a distinct advantage," Meijering
says."I knew the scouting program and I knew the small towns and the communities very well.It was a very smooth transition.The Boy Scout camps we were trying to fill were the ones I went to as a kid."
first three months, the National Guard
pulled him away for six months of active duty in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.But Meijering
returned more enthusiastic than ever.He was promoted through the ranks and by 1997 was supervising a Mid-America staff of 21, managing all the fiscal, fund-raising, office, property, retail, legal, insurance, information technology and compliance for the Council.
In 2000, Meijering
was given more responsibility as Scout Executive/CEO of the Pony Express Council 90
minutes down the road in St. Joseph, Mo.That's where he
stayed until 2003, when the Quivira Council
in Wichita snatched him away.
Meijering's serious, yet easy-going demeanor makes a lasting first impression.But it was his
fundraising experience, business sense and uncanny knack for hiring the right people that made him a hot commodity. "When I met Fred, it was not surprising to me that he has a military background," said Jeff DeGraffenreid, partner at Foulston Siefkin LLP and vice president for membership in the Quivira Council.