Brad von Gillern Volunteers His Time and Talent to the Mid-America CouncilFeb 01, 2022 11:33AM ● By Jeff Lacey
As a boy, when Brad von Gillern wasn’t outside, he was dreaming about it.
“I remember having a Scout manual, and I loved that thing,” von Gillern explained. “Especially on a crappy winter day, when you couldn’t really be outside, you could still read about all the skills that camping involved.” Learning survival skills, such as tying knots and the art of laying fires, were the kinds of activities that kept von Gillern endlessly occupied, particularly through his participation in the Boy Scouts. When he grew up, he knew exactly how he wanted to give back to his community: by continuing his involvement with the Scouts.
Recently von Gillern, CEO of Lueder Construction, finished a two-year stint as the chairman of the Mid-America Council. He was integral in developing several programs that helped lay a different kind of fire; the future of scouting.
Mid-America Council CEO Chris Mehaffey said that von Gillern’s involvement in the Mid-America Council has been a blessing. “Brad has been on the board several years,” Mehaffey said. “He has provided great leadership and oversight, and has helped me tremendously.” Specifically, von Gillern has volunteered more than his time and talents in strategic planning for the Mid-America Council. Leuder Construction has helped Scouts with volunteer manpower at events and helped individual Scouts complete community projects by sharing their expertise with building codes and construction knowledge.
Mehaffey can’t say enough about von Gillern’s character. “Brad’s a very genuine individual. What you see is what you get,” Mehaffey said. “You can tell Brad cares very deeply about the organizations and people he’s involved with. He cares about the people personally, and it’s clear he realizes that people are the most important thing.”
While von Gillern thinks learning how to navigate the wilderness is pretty cool, he thinks that the Scouts offer far more than opportunities to start fires. He thinks his work with the Mid-America Council is truly about giving boys and girls the opportunity to learn skills that can be applied to any situation. “The best thing that Scouts does for kids is give them the opportunity to learn leadership and life skills. We have a proven program where kids are given opportunities to practice leadership and put learning into practice. Everyone thinks of camping when they think of the Scouts, and camping is great, but camping is a chance to learn how to prepare and execute well, to care for oneself and others.”
Aside from being active with the Mid-America Council, von Gillern also gives his time to organizations like the Salvation Army and Omaha Leaders, and is active on the board of his church.
“My faith is a big part of my life,” von Gillern said. “Jesus taught that we are here to care for others, to invest in them and to give them every opportunity to become the best that they can be. If I can do that for others, then I’ve lived up to the mission that was set before me.”
The third point of the Scout Law is “A Scout is helpful; they volunteer to help others without expecting reward.” Those looking for someone who exemplifies this might want to have a chat with Brad von Gillern.
Visit mac-bsa.org for more information.
This article originally appeared in the February/March 2022 issue of B2B Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.