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Troop Leader Spotlight: Barbara 'Banny' Janssen


Image of Barbara Janssen

Troop Leader: Barbara Janssen

Service Unit: Painted Sky

Troop number: 1606

Troop Level: Cadette-Ambassador

Years as a leader: 9

Tell us why you invest the time and effort in being a Troop Leader?
I invest the time and effort because Girl Scouts gives girls so many opportunities.

Do you have a camp name? What is it?
Yes, Banny.

Favorite GS program and why?
I would have to say that my favorite Girl Scout program would be camping because of the friendship bonds that girls make within the troop and with other girls at camp. Camp is also a special time when girls make invaluable memories that will last a lifetime.

If you were a GS cookie what would it be?
Thin Mint

What was the most inspiring moment you’ve experienced?
When you get that look of accomplishment from a girl who has tried something she’s never done before or always wanted to do. I enjoy seeing growth through the eyes of the girls, not just my own children’s eyes, but my troop’s as well.

What has been your proudest moment?
When my oldest daughter Kaitlyn earned her Girl Scout Gold Award.

How do you balance the demands of being a troop leader?
That’s the best part about being a leader. You can set your own schedule to fit your life. I’ve found that meeting on a Sunday afternoon was not only best for my schedule, but great for the girls in my troop.

What goals and projects are you currently working on?
Exploring outdoor opportunities. Some of our troop’s girls are getting ready to take the Backpack training class. I’m working to bring outdoor opportunities into the neighborhoods. I’m also working with the Girl Scouts robotic high school team again this year. “The Diva Droids” will be competing once again in the curriculum “In the Zone.”

What advice would you give other Troop Leaders?
Take advantage of what Girl Scouts has to offer. I know that, thanks to good leaders, we are instilling values among girls and we are teaching them to be compassionate and empathetic. Remind the girls that success is all about GRIT.

What do you wish someone had told you as a new Troop Leader?
I wish someone told me that being a Girl Scout Troop Leader doesn’t have to be hard and not to forget that there is a lot of support and help available.