North Halton District
NORTH HALTON DISTRICT
In the early years, each group was an entity unto themselves, registering directly with the Ontario provincial office. As Scouting grew a district organization was necessary. Georgetown and Acton belonged to Halton District. Most events centred around the county town, Milton. J.D. Kelly of Georgetown was the first County Commissioner until about 1935 when he was succeeded by former Milton Mayor, George Elliott. Elliott was succeeded in 1943 by Acton Scoutmaster George Mason.
The post-war boom soon necessitated splitting the County into Oakville, Nelson and Halton Districts, completed in 1953. A further division occurred on 1 January 1957 with the creation of North Halton District. Like its predecessor, it was large and unwieldy, including Milton, Acton, Georgetown, Hillsburgh and Erin. The first Commissioner to preside over this area was Scoutmaster David Dills of Acton.
As the "baby-boomers" grew up, the District was divided again. Milton threw in their lot with Oakville. Hillsburgh, Erin and Acton joined Wellington District. Accordingly, in March 1960, Georgetown District was created. Bill Bellegham of Georgetown became the new Commissioner. Under his leadership, the first District badge was designed in 1961. Unfortunately the fledgling District could not afford to order the new crests until March 1963.
In April 1962, Acton decided to join Georgetown District, just as Commissioner Bellegham was replaced by acting Commissioner Doug Ward. Vic Gunn assumed the post in November 1962. He presided over a burgeoning District of about 800 boys and leaders until 1968, when Norm Herbert took over as Commissioner.
As Georgetown grew, the outlying groups often felt neglected by District staff. When Gord Douglas of 8th Georgetown Scouts took over as District Commissioner in 1970, he immediately took steps to address the problems. In January 1971 the first newsletter, CSVR (Cub, Scout Venturer, Rover) was published by Neville Palmer and Rhoda Geggie. They were succeeded in September by Ross and Terry Colter, who changed the name to Notes and News .
The next major step was to change the parochial name of the District. The long official process was started, but three groups had felt neglected long enough. In 1971, Hornby, Ashgrove and Scotch Block groups seceded unilaterally from Georgetown District. They registered directly with the Provincial Office from that point.
Undeterred, Georgetown District Council voted in 1972 to change the name back to North Halton District. In January 1973 the new District badge, designed by 5th Georgetown Scouter Ron Wolfenberg, was adopted. It was quickly ordered and replaced the old Georgetown District crests.
Gord Douglas turned over the Commissionership in 1976 to Murray Harrison of 1st Acton Scouts. The Notes and News also moved to Acton to be printed as the Hotline by Steve and Lorna Thompson.
In 1979, Robert Barber of Georgetown became District Commissioner, while the newsletter was assumed by John and Eileen Booth of Hillsburgh. After accepting a position from the Provincial Council for Boy Scouts, Steve Thompson took over the District in June 1980. Ross and Terry Colter resumed publication of the newsletter under the banner of the Scouter.
One year later John Sharples of 1st Acton took over as Commissioner from Steve Thompson. Under John Sharples, Hornby, Ashgrove and Scotch Block groups agreed to rejoin North Halton District in September 1983. That same month, Sandy Booth of Georgetown took over as District Commissioner. He retired from the position in June 1987 and was succeeded by Elaine Hannah of 1st Limehouse. Elaine became the first woman Commissioner in the history of the District, following the national by-law change.
A new design for the North Halton crest was approved in 1987. The publication of the Scouter by Terry Colter came to a close that year. It was assumed by Madeline and Bryan Osatchuk. Elaine Hannah relinquished the position of District Commissioner in 1997 to John Rothwell of Georgetown. Elaine moved out of the District ending a 25 year association with North Halton District and 1st Limehouse group. In 1999, Nancy Jackson of Georgetown, took over the District Commissioner = s position.
North Halton District is administered by a Council elected annually which is presided over by the president. The current (2000) president is Steve Norman of Georgetown. The presidents who preceded him for varying terms of office were Bob Bairstow, Denis White, Rick Golding, Gary Elliott, Gord MacLeish, Don McLaughlin, Gord Douglas, Jean Belshaw, Frank Hannah, Bob deCoste, George Cozens, Peter Berry, Alex Korzac, Harry Levy and Sam Meltzer.
The Council registered 470 youth, leaders and committee members in October 1999.