2015 photo of Mike
        Walton "How can he NOT have the "Grand Pooh-Bah Award"...and what can I do about it?"

(Note: I originally wrote this page to assist those who wanted to contact me or Mike asking if he has "received the so-and-so Award" or to assist them in recommending him for one of the BSA's service awards. A friend of Mike's took a look at the old page and asked if he could update it.)

It is true: Mike Walton is NOT the holder of the BSA's Silver Antelope, nor Silver Buffalo Awards (given to volunteers for service at the regional area/regional, and national levels, respectively).

Okay...

Several people have asked for Mike's biographical information to nominate him for an award. You are welcome to "join in the fun." Here's the information you will need to complete the application; all of this information below has been approved by Mike to be included in any award recommendation you desire to produce or support. The only items that are not available here or somewhere else within his website are personal data concerning Mike's children nor their mothers, and data such as social security or Army payroll numbers. Normally, such information is not needed nor necessary in the award nomination process.

There are at least three awards which the BSA does not require a person to be "currently registered." The Silver World Award is an award to recognize service to youth on a national or worldwide basis by those individuals who are NOT registered with the BSA. The Distinguished Eagle Scout Award recognizes Eagle Scouts -- whether or not they are registered with the BSA -- who have given public service and have been an Eagle Scout for at least 25 years or more (Mike became an Eagle Scout in November of 1975 and in 2013 received the local Council Distinguished Eagle Scout Award, the first one awarded in the Transatlantic Council). The Red Arrow Award recognizes individuals for their service to the Scouting program or to the Order of the Arrow. Mike does not hold either of those three awards - but he is a registered member of Scouting.

As a gentle reminder, the BSA's policies on nominating/recommending someone for one of their awards calls for not notifying the person of his or her nomination or recommendation. The BSA wants to avoid potential embarrassment if the person was turned down for an award or if the level of the award would be increased (for instance, instead of Mike receiving the Silver Antelope Award, the BSA may consider him for a Silver Buffalo instead). The BSA also reviews the awards to insure "program consistency."


Background

Mike L. Walton became a member of the Boy Scouts of America in March of 1968 in Ludwigsburg-Aldingen, Germany. He has been a member of a Cub Scout Pack, several Boy Scout Troops, and several Explorer Posts before he turned 21 (ask for list if you need it). The majority of his Scouting experiences as a youth member were split between the Transatlantic Council, headquartered at the time in Heidelberg, Germany; and the Old Kentucky Home Council (now called the Lincoln Heritage Council), headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky. He was also a Lone Boy Scout briefly while overseas with the former Direct Service Council, headquartered in Dallas, Texas.

As a youth member, Mike Walton earned the Arrow of Light, the Eagle Scout Award (with Silver and Gold Palms) and was one of the first holders of the Exploring Achievement Award. He also earned the God and Country Protestant religious emblem, the William T. Hornaday gold medal for service to conservation, a Certificate of Heroism (later converted to a Heroism Medal), eleven trail medals, a Transatlantic Council camping award medal, nine 50-Miler Awards, three historic trail awards, and other awards for service to youth given from the American Legion, the Military Order of the World Wars, and the Reserve Officers’ Association. Fort Knox, his hometown, presented him with the Army's Commanders' Award for Public Service in 1977. Since 1991, the senior award for community service by Junior ROTC students there is called the "Walton Community Service Award." He received four Young American Awards for community service and leadership from two local Councils and was recognized as a primary contributor toward Fort Knox’s newspaper receiving the MG Keith Ware journalism award in 1978.

He participated in the 1973-East and 1977 National Scout Jamborees as a youth staff member; and in 1975 he participated in the 14th World Scout Jamboree at Lillehammer, Norway. He was selected to atten the 1979 World Jamboree before it was cancelled.

He is a Brotherhood member of the BSA's Order of the Arrow.

BSA Employment

Mike Walton was employed in May 1978 under several Comprehensive Education and Training Act (CETA) grants given to the Boy Scouts of America, Southeast Region, for the development of in-school, vocational (Exploring) and external community based Scouting programs in rural/urban areas of Tennessee and Kentucky. He served as a Community Aide in Lexington, Kentucky; as a Paraprofessional to two local Councils in Tennessee (Great Smoky Mountain, Knoxville; and Sequoyah, Johnson City); and as a Paraprofessional Executive with the former Lonesone Pine, the former Old Kentucky Home, and as Senior Paraprofessional Executive with the current Bluegrass Councils. At the time of his exit from the Paraprofessional program, Mike Walton was one of three remaining Paraprofessionals still employed under the grant program from an initial pool of 31 in 1978. Mike Walton exited the Paraprofessional program in March 1981. He was accepted for employment upon graduation with the Birmingham Area Council, Alabama under the Professional Placement Program (PPP); however, because he was ordered to active duty with the Army, he had to turn down the appointment and also withdraw from the regional Paraprofessional program in order to meet academic and military education requirements toward a commission in the United States Army.

 Volunteer Service

Mike L. Walton has served as:


Youth Awards
Year Award Council

1970

Arrow of Light

Transatlantic Council

1974

God and Country

Old Kentucky Home Council

1974

Certificate of Heroism (upgraded to Heroism Medal when it was available)

Old Kentucky Home Council

1974

Hornaday Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1975

Eagle Scout Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1975

Young American Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1976

Young American Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1977

Bronze and Silver Big Horn Awards

East Central Region

1978

Young American Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1978

Young American Award

Bluegrass Council

1978

Exploring Achievement Award

Bluegrass Council

1978

Exploring Leadership Award (Council)

Old Kentucky Home Council

1978

Exploring Leadership Award (Regional)

Southeast Region

1978

Silver and Gold Bulldog Awards

Southeast Region


Mike Walton has been registered in a number of local Councils for periods longer than two months:

Tenure
Council City, State

National Capital Area

Bethesda, MD

Georgia-Carolina

Augusta, GA

Buffalo Trace

Evansville, IN

Audubon (now Lincoln Heritage)

Owensboro, KY

Bluegrass

Lexington, KY

Lonesome Pine (now Bluegrass)

Pikeville, KY

Old Kentucky Home (now Lincoln Heritage)

Louisville, KY

Four Rivers (now Lincoln Heritage)

Paducah, KY

Black Beaver (now Last Frontier)

Lawton, OK

Scioto Area (now Central Ohio)

Portsmouth, OH

Transatlantic

Brussels, Belgium

Direct Service (National Office)

Irving, Texas

Indianhead/BSA (now Northern Star)

St. Paul, MN

Baltimore Area

Baltimore, MD

Middle Tennessee

Nashville, TN


Adult Awards
Year Award Council

1978

Scouters' Training Award (Boy Scout)

Old Kentucky Home Council

1979

Explorer Leaders' Training Award,

Bluegrass Council

1979

Sea Exploring Training Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1980

Organizer Award

Bluegrass Council

1980

Silver Scouter Award

Eastern Kentucky University

1980

William Spurgeon III Exploring Award

Bluegrass Council

1981

Sea Badge

Southeast Region

1981

Den Leader's Training Award

Bluegrass Council

1981

Scouters' Training Award (Cub Scout)

Bluegrass Council

1981

Youth Leadership in America Award

Old Kentucky Home Council

1982

Good Shepard Award

Old Kentucky Home Council;

1982

Young Service Award

Bluegrass Council

1982

James West Fellowship

Bluegrass Council

1983

Advisors' Key

Transatlantic Council

1983

District/Division Award of Merit

Old Kentucky Home Council

1985

Scouters' Key

Transatlantic Council

1985

Scoutmaster Award of Merit

Transatlantic Council

1985

Bronze Pelican

Transatlantic Council

1985

Wood Badge

Transatlantic Council

1985

Commissioners Key Award,

Transatlantic Council

1985

Pdefinderin Band

Germany Scout Association

1985

St. Stephens Medal


1986

OA Plaque

Transatlantic Council

1986

Scouting Service Award

Scouting Netherlands

1987

Den Leader Coach Training Award

Georgia- Carolina Council

1988

Commissioner Award of Merit

Georgia-Carolina Council

1999

Scouting Award

El Salvador Scouting Association

1999

Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal

Department of Defense

2002

District/Division Award of Merit

Direct Service Council

2005

Silver Beaver Award

Baltimore Area Council

2006

Cub Scouter (Training) Award

Viking Council

2006

Doctorate of Commissioner Science

Viking Council

2008

WEBELOS Den Leader (Training) Award

Viking Council

2008

God and Service Award

Viking Council

2010

Boyce Organizer Award

Twin Valley Council

2012

International Scouter Award

Transatlantic Council

2013

NESA Outstanding Eagle Scout Award

Transatlantic Council


IMPACT

"Mike did this and did that and got some award" you're probably saying at this point. What impact did this have on the program? After all, anyone can earn those awards or medals....

The largest impact Mike Walton made (and continues to do so) on Scouting is his willingness to travel just about anywhere to assist Councils to raise monies, recruit youth and/or adults, and to inspire and motivate volunteers and in some cases, professionals, toward continued service and participation in the programs. Since 1989, Mike Walton has logged an average of 4000 miles each year (except for three periods of service in which the Army had him overseas performing the missions he gets paid to do as an Army officer) in support of Scouting. He has been compensated for less than 20 percent of that each year. This means that 80 percent of his travel, food, lodging, and of course, his time away from work was "on his dime and his time". He says that "it'll come back to him someday" but let's face it: you and I both know that he does all of that stuff not for the money, but because he truly believes in the programs and what it stands for... What turns him on is his way in getting people from standing still toward action. Whether its a Troop meeting in Minnesota; a roundtable meeting in the middle of Iowa; a Council training course gathering in Texas; or a Scout Show in North Carolina -- wherever Mike Walton goes to speak or just to visit, Scouts and Scouters leave with a warm place in their hearts after hearing him -- and parents sign their kids up and write those checks!

Someone told Mike after an appearance at a Scouting event, “You know, the Council did us a great favor by bringing you in. We get so tired of hearing the same old story told by someone in our Council or by someone with no Scouting background. You give us the same story, but we all feel that it’s real because – we can hear it in your voice and the way you act – we’re getting a real Scouting story…” That’s the largest impact he has, why people ask him to speak, why when you read something he wrote you sit and say “wow”, and why he will drop just about everything else to go and deliver a talk to anyone who will sit and listen!

The second largest impact Mike Walton has had on Scouting is his writings and personal encouragements. Since 1990, he has been a mainstay on a mailing list called "Scouts-L", the "daily international Roundtable Meeting which NEVER ENDS". That's since 1990, folks -- more than 25 years! Much of Mike's responses and postings are available even now on the Internet, which was why Mike started writing and posting his information here...it's there: the good stuff and the occasional bad stuff too. It's mostly good, which is why Mike doesn't get as much sleep as he needs -- he's answering between 400 and 500 (and this is not an exaggeration; Mike is a part of four mailing lists, each with 50 messages (that's 250 by itself); plus he's on America Online (tm) with between 75 and 125 messages there a day directly to him asking policy, uniforming and advice questions; and then there's the two military accounts where he receives Scouting mail through...and that's about 420-490 personal messages EACH DAY (it slows down around summer camp and December holiday periods...but Mike's out either helping to raise monies, award medals, or talking with volunteers and Scouts anyhow...)). Many people have wrote to Mike over the years, thanking him for those few electrons of encouragement, of hope, of congrats, of cheer... and they have stayed with the program longer than if a fellow volunteer from their Council had done the same things. It's the fact that Mike has "been there, done that, gotten the tee-shirts and have had them cleaned and willing to share" with others in the same boat out there -- that is what made "settummanque, the blackeagle" so popular.

As social media like Facebook has brought Scouting people together, Mike is there also. He has always been someone who embraces new technology. In updating this for him, I went out and looked to see where I could find his postings today. In addition to Scouts-L and a couple other mailing lists or groups, Mike Walton is a regular contributor to three or four blogs, including the BSA's SCOUTING Magazine one and within Linked-In; he has a Facebook page called "Talk About Scouting!", he's on two or three patch trading, sales and swapping discussion groups, he is a member of two patch trading organizations, and if all of that is not enough, he has his own blog which he needs to write more.

Mike’s writings have also appeared in the BSA’s professional journal, called “Professionally Speaking,” (“Pro Speak??”), in two scouting magazines (Scouters’ Journal and American Scouting Digest) and in military journals in Kentucky, Oklahoma, Minnesota and in Germany In 1995, Mike wrote a series of editorials and was successful in getting nine newspapers to print them during Scouting Anniversary Week that year. Those “Days of the Week” articles are also available for reading and sharing via “The Tree.”

There's another smaller impact that Mike Walton has had on local Councils: the interaction he's had with professionals. Mike somehow finds them early in their careers and have coached and encouraged them to continue their service to the profession of Scouting and to the volunteers they represent. Many of those professionals are now mid- and senior-level managers, giving continued leadership to Scouting and they are the ones that Mike encourages. Through his interaction with the professional cadre of the Boy Scouts of America, Mike Walton has been able to take their concerns, their successes and their challenges and share them with volunteers nationally. It has become not a “we-them” thing when Mike speaks: he has the experience and knowledge of being a paid field employee, a unit-serving executive working those things that today’s professionals struggle with: how to get and retain quality volunteers? How to work them into the “existing structure”? How to not stress out too much while working the various tasks volunteers ask of their professional counterparts? Why is professional education so important?

While these things are taught at the BSA’s professional academies, having a volunteer who have “been there, done that, and know what you’re going through” – as a reinforcer to the formal education and field mentoring -- that makes the difference in continued support.

OTHER ORGANIZATIONS

Mike Walton has been a volunteer with other organizations as well. He served as an officer with a chapter of the Association of the United States Army (AUSA), spends two afternoons each month at a local school in Edina, Minnesota under a young people’s reading program, and until the current security level situation, served as tour guide to Fort Snelling, where he is currently stationed at. He is also member of the Hardin County, Kentucky chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), several internet associations, and two computer user clubs.

CURRENT EMPLOYMENT

Mike Walton is a part of the public affairs team at the Air Force Materiel Command, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. He supports community relations, social media and media relations support to the base which supports many other air bases around the world. Colonel Walton was transferred from active service to the Army's Retired Reserve in 2011 and is awaiting his first retirement check in 2018. In the meantime, Mr. Walton has suppassed his civil service retirement benchmark in 2016. Mike has been in some 20 countries performing public affairs missions, including some countries many people only hear about; Poland, the Czech Republic, Honduras, Ivory Coast, and El Salvador. He recently received a Bronze Star (pretty important medal) for his leadership overseas in Iraq; and a Legion of Merit (likewise important medal) for his overall service to the Army over close to 40 years of service.

SUMMARY

Okay. Now you know more about Mike Walton than the average person. But don’t take the words of what’s printed here. Ask Mike to provide you with the names of people who know him personally and who don’t mind responding to an email. Because of spam and other nastiness, the names and email addresses are not listed here.

Final words: I have seen Mike tear up when people out there just send him a posting or a letter letting him know that he’s appreciated or to thank him for some inspiration or comforting words. He keeps those things, and when life has gotten him down or when people aren’t being nice, I’ve seen him open up and re-read one of those letters or postings. He’s not the only person out there doing these things – and God knows that he screws up like the rest of us human beings. A couple of Councils don’t like him – he’s got a chest full of awards, tells volunteers things kept from them from “those in charge”, he “thinks he knows everything about Scouting”, and there’s that thing about his heritage and skin coloring that some people STILL haven’t gotten over. The Mike Walton I know has never cared about getting “something” (although I feel embarrassed for him when he tries to back out of telling people why he hasn’t “got the Silver” whatever…), never let the fact that he’s the “only black” or “one of a few black” people at some event bother him… won’t fret over it, and in a lot of instances have taken his own life into his hands to “be there” for the “whatever event" miles or states away. He doesn’t know everything – that’s why he surrounds himself with a room full of books, manuals, papers and lots of emails. When he doesn’t know the answer, he’ll post someone or call someone who does (which is why you may not be able to reach Mike by phone) or he’ll go out and get whatever it is he needs to learn (which is why a lot of times he may only have enough money to get the “small sized” coffee). And instead of saying “I found this…”, he shares his “sources” with others (unless they have asked him not to do so, which he’s also have honored).

He tries to live a good life, loves and proudly talks about his kids, stays in touch with both me and his first former wife, and surrounds himself with people from all walks of life, all racial and ethnic groups, all skin tones, all sizes, ages and sexual preferences. He has never shied away from expressing what he believes in from his heart, like leading in open prayer before sharing a lunch or dinner meal with friends; or hugging someone in public. He loves his job and the people he works with and for. More than anything, Mike Walton simply loves Scouting – his mom said that he has “found two things he has always been good at: talking and writing” – and has been using what he's "good at" for the betterment of a program he loves to be a part of. He promises to “do his best” in and when he says “Scout’s honor,” you know that however painful his revelation may be, that he’s telling you with as much honesty and forthrightness that he can muster up.

"You make everyone feel that if they are not a part of Scouting, they should be; and if they are a part of Scouting, they should be proud of whatever it is they or their children are doing in it."

This is ALL I know about Mike and Scouting. I hope that this helps you and provides some more insight into Mike; but he’s not shy – not in the least; ask him questions not covered here!!

(Wow, this reads like a Mike Walton posting! heeheehehee.)