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Girls Scouts in Troop 708 exchanged ideas about democracy at a meeting with Madison City Council members Connie Spears and Ranae Bartlett (back row). CONTRIBUTED

Bartlett, Denzine, Spears and Wroblewski discuss democracy with Girl Scouts

MADISON – Recently elected and sworn in, Madison City Council now has a female majority in its members. This fact has not gone unnoticed by Girl Scouts in Madison.

“Girl Scouts USA has done a wonderful job finding highly-respected national companies to partner with to create over 70 new badges for girls in grades K-12. Being an election year and 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment, it only seemed natural to celebrate all these female achievements by sharing with a younger generation,” Troop 708 Leader Beth Crocker said.

One of the newest badges added to Girl Scouts’ curriculum is the Democracy Badge. “Each level is required to learn about local and state government, as well as the three federal branches of government,” Crocker said.

“Connie Spears and Ranae Bartlett did a great job explaining all these roles to the girls and even shared some personal stories about the challenges of campaigning during COVID,” Crocker said. “Ranae shared a case she worked on as legal counsel for Walmart Corporation that went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Yep, she won!”

After Bartlett and Spears left, Crocker asked her troop, full of rising middle-schoolers, who was interested in running for student council next year. Almost half of the girls raised their hands.

“Girl Scouts is raising the next generation of females to be leaders and to have a servant’s heart. I’m humbled to be a part of it. Our sincere thanks go to Connie and Ranae for sharing themselves with Troop 708,” Crocker said.

Girls Scouts can earn six different Democracy Badges.

Another Girls Scout leader, Beverly Champion, commented on the council’s new configuration. “Did you know that four of the seven newly elected council are women!? Wow.” For the last four years, the only female council member was Maura Wroblewski for District 1.

In addition, to help Scouts with their Democracy badge, council members Bartlett, Wroblewski and Karen Denzine met with the girls to talk about city government, tour City Hall and discuss the U.S. Supreme Court.

“The council members arranged for the girls to meet with the mayor, fire chief, city clerk, CIT and K-9 police officers. They even invited the girls to lead the Pledge of Allegiance at their first official council meeting,” Crocker said.

“The girls and parents enjoyed it so much. The council women were genuinely happy to share with the girls and are open to meeting with more Girl Scouts,” Crocker said. “I’m so excited for what the council women will do for our city over the next four years and what a great example they are for the girls in our community.”

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