SWC #57: January 10-12, 2025 | Back to the Basics: The Spirit of Scouting


What is a Silver Claw?

When one attends SWC, he or she receives a bear claw to verify attendance. Look around your district events and you will see Scouters wearing one or more. When one serves as Scoutmaster of the SWC, the claw that is presented to him or her is not a bear claw but a Silver Eagle Claw.

If a “has-been” is still a member of a Scouting Unit, he/she may still attend SWC as a participant in that unit’s patrol. However, many has-beens are often not actively connected in a Unit, but are still active in various other positions. So the has-beens formed the “Silver Claw” Patrol comprised exclusively of past Scoutmasters.

Origin of the Silver Claws

The transition to Silver Claws began as a way to keep the SWC Staff fresh and welcoming to new staffers. Before this policy, the SWC staff was close to being staffed by “old Scoutmasters” and not enough new Scouters. To prevent SWC from developing a “select” staff, a policy was made to restrict past Scoutmasters from ever serving on the SWC staff again (with the one exception of the last Scoutmaster serving in an advisory capacity the following year).

Being a Silver Claw at SWC

Silver Claws camp as a patrol if they have no other patrol ties. They do not compete for awards with the other SWC patrols but do join in many of the activities and games just for the fun of it.

Silver Claws are available for special service activities, if the current Scoutmaster needs assistance. Several members do perform services and camp with the Silver Claws at the same time.

Creating the Silver Claw Patrol has made freed up staff position opportunities for new Scouters and created a great patrol, deep with experience.

Membership grows by just one each year and is permanent, regardless of their active involvement in Scouting, relocation, change of districts or councils, or move on to that great Campground in the sky.

Since 1970, the Scoutmaster traditionally serves one year and returns the following year as “Advisor”. After serving as Advisor, he/she joins the Silver Claw patrol.

Silver Claw Patrol Roster

Past SWC Scoutmasters

11968Homer Powell *
21970Homer Powell *
31971Sieg Gruener *
41972Elton Adams *
51973Bill Craig
61974Tom Ogletree
71975Bill Barber *
81976Jim Moody
91977Hank Thornburgh
101978Henry Branton
111979Dave Lipscomb *
121980Bob Claunch *
131981Rob Roper
141982Mike Fletcher
151983Bill Hight
161984Hart Gates *
171985Malcom Bowles *
181986Jim Vaughn *
191987Ted Vinson
201988Dan Worley
211989Bill Collier *
221990Eddie Gomez
231991Cliff McMahan
241992Bill Hill
251993Bion Jones
261994Steve Fisher
271995Russ Parker *
281996Bill Bass
291997Don Prince
301998Tom Sprayberry
311999David Adams
322000Sam Johnson
332001Terry Nunn
342002Dave Heusinger
352003Ray Hopkins
362004David Muller
372005Pat Bonito
382006Michele Lavigne
392007Don Snyder
402008Dave Parks
412009Tom Morin *
422010John Keeshan
432011Warren Wright
442012Dennis Rowe
452013Dan Wright
462014Paul Fitzner
472015Dave Schimmel
482016Trent Trees
492017Bob Higgins
502018Audrey Taylor
512019Sherry Wright
522020Greg Knight
532021Bill Jones
542022Bob Griffin
552023Tracy Jones
562024Clint Pope
572025Steve Parker
 61 2029 TBD
 622030 TBD
 632031 TBD
 642032 TBD
 652033 TBD