Honoring a Legacy of Love
Florence Glander dedicated an incredible 85 years of service to Girl Scouts
A Girl Scout growing up, Florence started her Girl Scout career working as a council staff person in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Then, she was hired by the Girl Scout council in Indianapolis. Her assignment was a difficult one: to find and recruit girls who would benefit from Girl Scouts and gain higher self-esteem, conflict resolution skills, and increased confidence.
Back then, not every community knew about or had access to Girl Scouts, but Florence worked to make sure girls from every part of Indianapolis had the complete Girl Scout experience—earning badges, selling cookies, and exploring the outdoors.
Florence spearheaded the creation of unique, multicultural programs, bringing girls of different cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds together at camp. Through group activities and special retreats, girls from across the state learned the basics of Girl Scouts—all while learning to be a sister to every Girl Scout, no matter her language or heritage. Florence also acted as a mentor to Girl Scouts, teaching them the basics of entrepreneurship and money management through the Girl Scout Cookie Program.
After moving to Pennsylvania, Florence continued working with the Girl Scout Movement, driving the effort to make Camp Wood Haven a reality. Located at the foot of Blue Mountain on 200 acres of land, Girl Scouts from all over Berks County and beyond have played, worked, and become leaders thanks to this effort. Over her decades of service in multiple locations, Florence trained Brownie troop volunteers on the best ways to empower Girl Scouts, served as a council president, and as a council board member.
Working with children is what truly excited Florence, who once said, “Children must learn early in life that prejudice is a terrible thing. We must have respect for all types of people.”
Putting actions behind her words, Florence worked with Green Circle, a program to show elementary school-age boys and girls that everyone has strengths and talents, and to encourage them to think about their impact on their community—represented by an ever-growing green circle.
When asked why after nearly 85 years in Girl Scouting Florence still held our mission and beliefs so near to her heart, she explained, “Girl Scouts taught me so much. I learned how to take care of myself and help other people. We learned that we could be part of other programs because Girl Scouts taught us how to work with other people. I’ve stayed with Girl Scouting because I was enjoying it and there was a need for people to help others.”
Bringing girls together, providing them with educational opportunities, demonstrating moral and ethical values, Florence Glander represented the best of Girl Scouts. Over the years, she was a role model and mentor for hundreds of girls and women, and continued as a volunteer until her passing this past May.
While the times may change, Girl Scouts offers every girl a chance to connect with every part of her community and to do something amazing—as Florence so ably demonstrated. Her legacy is rooted in Girl Scouting, and the Girl Scout Movement is stronger for the visionary leadership Florence provided.