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March 8, 2005 > Local Scout Leaders Receive Recognition for Service

Local Scout Leaders Receive Recognition for Service

by Garrett Yee

Three local adult scout leaders from the Mission Peak District received the Silver Beaver Award, one of Scouting's highest volunteer awards, at a special recognition dinner held at Merritt College in Oakland on Feb. 5. Following are the three recipients:

Fred Allen
Over the past 28 years, Allen has been a dedicated Scouting volunteer for Pack and Troop 273 in Union City. He started Troop 273 as the original Scoutmaster, and secured the San Leandro Optimist Club to become the chartered organization for both Pack and Troop 273 over 25 years ago. He also served the pack and troop as committee member and committee chairman, and became the chartered organization representative after retiring from his role as Scoutmaster in 1983. Allen has been an active member of the San Leandro Optimist Club, for three decades serving as president, secretary and treasurer. He has also been an active member of Niles Congregational Church since 1970, where he has directed youth ministry programs and assisted with numerous church activities. Allen is retired from his business, and lives with wife Marcia in Union City.

J. Lance Byard
Byard has been an active Scout for over 24 years in the Mission Peak District. He has served as an Assistant Scoutmaster, Cubmaster, Webelos Den Leader and pack committee member. He has been an active member of the district committee. He has been an active member of the High Adventure Team for the last six years, including service as instructor on a number of courses. He is also an active supporter of the Order of the Arrow, and is known for his hands-on service with camp improvement projects, including many special needs requiring technical assistance. Byard spearheaded the High School Grad Night program for 10 years, where teenagers enjoy the fun of the graduation night experience in a safe, substance-free setting. Recently retired, Lance lives in Fremont with his wife Janet.

Lawrence L. Severson
Severson has been an active adult Scout for over 21 years in the various units of his ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. During this time, he has been a chartered organization representative, troop committee member, and assistant Scoutmaster, and now serves as a troop committee chairman. He served for 10 years as a member of the Council LDS Relationships Committee, including at least three years as chairman. He also served as Counselor to the Fremont Stake President for 10 years, with responsibility for all youth programs in the LDS wards of the Fremont-Newark area. He gave outstanding leadership as the bishop of the ward (the top layperson role in his congregation), during which time he gave thousands of hours of service in a variety of ministries and counsel to families. Severson is an attorney and partner of his law firm. He and his wife Cheryl are the proud parents of eight children, including several Eagle Scouts, and live in Fremont.

About Scouting: The purpose of the Boy Scouts of America-incorporated on Feb. 8, 1910, and chartered by Congress in 1916-is to provide an educational program for boys and young adults (young men and women) to build character, to train in the responsibilities of participating citizenship, and to develop personal fitness. The Mission Peak District serves over 2500 members and their families in Fremont, Newark, and Union City. To find out more about Scouting, visit their website at

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