The Boy Scouts of America presents the Woods Services Award to one adult each year to recognize exceptional service to Scouts with disabilities. Nominations should be received by the end of this year to be considered for the 2018 award. Each council may submit a single nomination each year. The online application form provides complete instructions.
2017 Recipient Ralph N. Renbock
Mr. Renbock has been nothing short of monumental in his contributions to Scouts with disabilities in the Northeast Illinois Council. An Eagle Scout, former Committee Chair, and Assistant Scoutmaster for his two sons, Ralph joined Scouting in 1943 and has had continuous membership since. He began his service to Scouts with disabilities in 1978 when he responded to an article about the need of a Scoutmaster for a troop sponsored by a local school which served youth with developmental disabilities. He served there as Scoutmaster for 10 years before becoming the leader Post (now Crew) 30 in 1988. Combined, these units serve about two thirds of the developmentally disabled population of the Riverside Foundation in Lincolnshire, Illinois.
In addition to leading regular meetings, Ralph coordinates four special events for disabled Scouts across the council. These events include a day at one of the local council camps, the Fall Dance, the Winter Barn Dance, and the Pinewood Derby. He utilizes more traditional Scout troops to help with the coordination and execution of these events. Ralph also organized the council’s first ever committee focused on serving Scouts with disabilities. He has served as the chairman since its inception in 1990. Among his many contributions to Scouting is his mentorship of Scouts with developmental disabilities, enabling them to attain the rank of Eagle Scout. Through his efforts, it is estimated that Ralph has personally had an impact on the Scouting experience of over 12,000 Scouts.
Over the years Mr. Renbock has been recognized with many awards including the Shofar Award, The Phoenix Award, the District Award of Merit, the Silver Beaver Award, the Torch of Gold, the President’s Award, and even recognition by the Office of the Illinois Governor in 2014.