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    The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.

    Scout Oath

    “On my honor, I will do my best To do my duty to God and my Country and to obey the Scout Law; to help other people at all times; to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.”

    Scout Law

    A Scout is:
    • Trustworthy
    • Loyal
    • Helpful
    • Friendly
    • Courteous
    • Kind
    • Obedient
    • Cheerful
    • Thrifty
    • Brave
    • Clean
    • Reverent

    For more than 100 years, the Boy Scouts of America has offered strong values and strong leaders who have made the difference in the lives of millions of young people. We proudly recall the past because we know the values of the Scout Oath and Law positively influenced generations past.

    We also know that today, these values are even more important in the lives of young people as they face drugs, permissiveness and violence.

    We initiate this strategic plan to address issues critical to the future of the Scouting movement in our area. This plan focuses on five areas: leadership, total financial development, traditional unit and membership growth, marketing, and endowment emphasis and stewardship.

    The values of the Scout Oath and Law remain as strong as ever. Through the implementation of this plan, the principles, aims, and ideals of Scouting will continue to be passed along. We all share an awesome responsibility to guide others along the trail of Scouting and on the high road of noble character and constructive citizenship. One hundred years from now, the world will be different because we were important in the lives of young people today.

    The Texas Trails Council is a non-profit community based, youth serving organization that serves Brown, Callahan, Coleman, Comanche, Eastland, Erath, Fisher, Haskell, Jones, Lampasas, Mills, Nolan, North Runnels, San Saba, Shackelford, Stephens, Stonewall, and Taylor counties in North Central Texas. The council provides programs in each community for boys in the first grade through age 20 and co-ed programs for youth through various Scouting Programs. The Texas Trail Council, Boy Scouts of America, issues charters to community organizations to operate local Scouting Units. We have a rich heritage of having served Scouting in many of these Counties since 1929.

    The Council supports Cub Scout Packs, Boy Scout Troops, and Venture Crews which are operated by chartered organizations.  The Council trains adult volunteers, provides insurance protection, operates Camp Billy Gibbons and Camp Tonkawa, provides council wide programs and activities and raises funds necessary to maintain the organization.

    United Ways in our area provide part of the operating budget. The balance is raised from donations, Friends of Scouting, popcorn sales, endowment income, special events and user-based fees.

    Our Council Service Center is located in Abilene, Texas at 1208 North 5th St. You can contact us at (325) 677-2688 or by email at

    United Way organizations in our area provide part of the operating budget. The balance is raised from donations, Friends of Scouting, popcorn sales, endowment income, special events and user-based fees.

    The Council Key Leadership of the Buffalo Trail Council, Midland, TX, Concho Valley Council, San Angelo, TX, Chisholm Trail Council, Abilene, TX, met on May 14, 2002 at the Sweetwater Country Club in Sweetwater, Texas to explore the possibility of joining together to form one council. Comanche Trail Council, Brownwood, TX, was not part of this meeting. Following the meeting, the Executive Board of the Buffalo Trail Council turned down the offer to consolidate into one council.

    A second meeting was held June 19, 2002 at the First Coleman National Bank, Coleman, TX and Comanche Trail Council was invited this time to participate in the meeting along with Concho Valley Council and Chisholm Trail Council. Following this meeting the Concho Valley Council’s Executive Board voted, by only one vote, not to participate further into discussions about consolidating the three councils into one.

    A third meeting was then held on August 6, 2002 at Hendrick Hospital in Abilene, TX. Ten Scouters from Chisholm Trail Council and Comanche Trail Council were selected as a “Program Review Study Task Force” to look into the pros and cons of the two councils consolidating into one council with a new name. The three task study groups reported back on Finance, Program and Administration. That group voted to proceed with further studies and to have Town Hall Scouter meetings in several different communities in the two councils with representatives of both councils present to answer questions and give the pros and cons about consolidation.

    As reported in the Brownwood Bulletin, August 29, 2002, from the meeting held at the Council Service Center in Brownwood, “Some scout leaders expressed concern that being included in a huge council would cause area Scout leaders to lose a voice in council decisions. The prospect of aligning with a big city council (Ft. Worth) also brought concerns to the forefront that Comanche Trail Council and Chisholm Trail would lose their distinct West Texas culture.”

    Following the Town Hall meetings held in seven communities of the two councils, their respective Executive Boards and charter organizations voted on October 29, 2002 to combine the two councils into one council. A transition team of 20 members from both councils met on October 30, 2002 in Brownwood to discuss the upcoming changes. As Pat Leatherwood, stated at that meeting, “The decision was an emotional one.” The new council would be based in Abilene.

    The Texas Trails Council was officially organized on January 1, 2003 following several months of meetings between the former Chisholm Trail Council and the Comanche Trail Council. The boards of the two former councils elected Pat Leatherwood to serve as the first Council President and a special selection committee selected Ken Brown to serve as the first Council Scout Executive. The question about whether or not to unify had been considered for 20 years. At least twice in the previous 15 years, the two councils had met and rejected the opportunity to combine into one council.

    In the fall of 2010 the council recognized that due to changing demographics, the current four district alignment, based largely upon the districts of the previous councils, was not serving the youth effectively. Several re-alignment proposals were submitted and each district as well as the Executive Board discussed the pros and cons of each one. It was finally agreed upon that the council would be made up of three districts instead of four. As a “fresh start” the new districts would have new names and as a result Brazos Forks, Buffalo Mountain, and Pecan Valley districts were formed.

    Council Shoulder Patch

    Following a contest to name the new council, held until November 15 2002, the name “Texas Trails” was selected. Another contest was held to select the shoulder patch for the new council and that selection was done in 2003. This new patch had two ghost symbols in the background. One of a buffalo head and one of the longhorn head. Some features of the former shoulder patches of the Chisholm Trail Council and the Comanche Trail Council patch was incorporated into the design. The first patches of 1,000 were made by Sunshine Emblems in Florida. The new council budget was to be about $750,000.

    Commissioners are district and council leaders who help Scout units succeed. They coach and consult with adult leaders of Cub Scout packs, Boy Scout troops, and Venturing crews. Commissioners help maintain the standards of the Boy Scouts of America. They also oversee the unit charter renewal plan so that each unit reregisters on time with an optimum number of youth and adult members.

    Roles the Commissioner Plays

    • A commissioner plays several roles, including friend, representative, unit “doctor,” teacher, and counselor.
    • The commissioner is a friend of the unit. Of all their roles, this one is the most important. It springs from the attitude, “I care, I am here to help, what can I do for you?” Caring is the ingredient that makes commissioner service successful. He or she is an advocate of unit needs. A commissioner who makes himself known and accepted now will be called on in future times of trouble.
    • The commissioner is a representative. The average unit leader is totally occupied in working with kids. Some have little if any contact with the Boy Scouts of America other than a commissioner’s visit to their meeting. To them, the commissioner may be the BSA. The commissioner helps represent the ideals, the principles, and the policies of the Scouting movement.
    • The commissioner is a unit “doctor.” In their role as “doctor,” they know that prevention is better than a cure, so they try to see that their units make good “health practices” a way of life. When problems arise, and they will even in the best unit, they act quickly. They observe symptoms, diagnose the real ailment, prescribe a remedy, and follow up on the patient.
    • The commissioner is a teacher. As a commissioner, they will have a wonderful opportunity to participate in the growth of unit leaders by sharing knowledge with them. They teach not just in an academic environment, but where it counts most as an immediate response to a need to know. That is the best adult learning situation since the lesson is instantly reinforced by practical application of the new knowledge.
    • The commissioner is a counselor. As a Scouting counselor, they will help units solve their own problems. Counseling is the best role when unit leaders don’t recognize a problem and where solutions are not clear-cut. Everyone needs counseling from time to time, even experienced leaders.

    How are commissioners selected?

    Selection process and criteria vary depending on the position.

    • Unit Commissioners are appointed by the district commissioner with the approval of the council executive board.
    • Assistant District Commissioners are appointed by the district commissioner with the approval of the council executive board.
    • Roundtable Commissioners are appointed by the district commissioner with the approval of the council executive board.
    • District Commissioners are approved and appointed by the council executive board, with the concurrence of the Scout executive, on the recommendation of the district nominating committee.
    • Assistant Council Commissioners are appointed by the council commissioner with the approval of the council executive board.
    • A Council Commissioner is elected at the annual meeting of the local council after selection by the council nominatingcommittee.