Commissioner’s Blog #13


John Hovanesian, M.D.
Orange County Council Commissioner

“If You Only Had 17 Years, How Would You Choose to Live Your Life?”
January 16, 2014

Last week in New England, a 17-year-old boy named Sam Berns died of a rare disease called Progeria, which causes all the body’s cells to age rapidly. Caused by a genetic mutation occurring in one in eight million newborns, this disease, with no known treatment, claims most lives by age 13. Sam Berns, both of whose parents are doctors, was diagnosed shortly after birth. But however sad it is to lose a young person, Sam Berns’ life should be celebrated. He and his parents knew he would not have long. While they formed a medical foundation to search for a cure for Progeria, they also encouraged young Sam to live his life to the fullest.

And that he did.


Among the many accomplishments of this young scholar, tutor, and musician was the rank of Eagle Scout. In deciding how to spend his limited free time in his short life, Sam chose well. Despite the many years it must have consumed to become an Eagle, Sam surely learned about self-reliance, the virtue of helping, forging deep friendships, and loving God. In doing so, Sam lived life fully.

How many of us squander our time on Earth pursuing false gods? How fine an example did Sam Berns set? The lucky rest of us, whose children will live lives of normal duration, can take a lesson from this exemplary young man. Live every day as if yours are numbered, and however much time we have, we will have lived life fully, like Sam Berns.

Eagle Scout Portraits

Come soar with the Eagles and leave a portrait of your legacy!
See the GradPortraits website for more information, click HERE
Calling all Future Business Leaders, CEOs, Community Leaders, Mayors, Congressmen and Governors Who Have Achieved Their Eagle Scout Rank Your Formal Eagle Scout Portrait Commemorates This Great Achievement.

Your parents are proud of you, and so is your council. Take this chance to create a formal portrait so they’ll have a memory to cherish and celebrate your accomplishment few Scouts achieve. Your portrait will hang proudly in the council’s office, your parent’s home & office. And, a decade or so down the road, your son will look upon this portrait and decide to follow your path.

We create, you edit and receive your portraits on-site so your official Eagle portrait will hang in the council office. Portrait sessions will be at our studio, 12832 Valley View St., Ste. 104, West Garden Grove (where the 405 & 22 Fwys collide!).

If you are interested in purchasing additional portraits as gift prints for relatives, your Court of Honor display or home, we’ll offer options for purchase that are printed during your session or you may opt for retouched prints delivered later. Payment is due at time of delivery via Debit, Visa or MasterCard.

On these dates our discounted Orange County Council prices are in effect.

(Dates are subject to change, please consult GradPortraits web site for any changes – see link above)

All portrait sessions are held in our studio at:

3303 Harbor Blvd. G1
Costa Mesa, CA 92626


For those of you who cannot wait to purchase Eagle Scout portraits, you may come to our Studio Portrait Sessions. Follow the above link to make your on-line appointment. If you want your portrait only for the Eagle Honor Wall, please wait until our regularly scheduled BSA Orange County Council dates so we may accommodate as many Eagles as possible in studio who need CoH and family gift & display prints.

A limited number of appointments are available, so make your reservations early. Session reservations may be arranged by following this link to our on-line reservation system.

If you cannot attend these dates, if you want more poses and more creativity, or your Court of Honor occurs before these dates, follow the appointment link above to reserve an appointment session during Portrait Fridays. Our studio is in West Garden Grove.

Portraits are by appointment only and you must have an adult with you during your visit to our studio. Your investment in our in-studio portraits (non-council dates) will be higher as we are dedicating one hour of creativity to your portrait.


Are you looking for Eagle Scout Gifts to show how proud everyone is of this achievement. Give a Portrait Studio Gift Certificate for your new Eagle! Call 562-596-8999 for details.

“We just received my son’s Eagle Portrait packet and were absolutely thrilled with the picture and the quality.”
Arnold K.

‘It was the quickest, easiest, loveliest portrait session we’ve ever had. We love the pose and portrait.’
Laurie D.


If you have any questions on any of the above documents, please contact your District Advancement Chair.
Rev: 01-20-15 mp

Eagle Scout Courts of Honor

1. Eagle Scout Court of Honor Guidelines a pdf document, Revision: 07-02-09.

2. Eagle Court of Honor Decorations a pdf document, Revision: 07-25-11. – Verify what is available.

3. Eagle Scout Letter of Congratulations List a pdf document, Revision: 07-02-09. – Candidate for revision.

4. Eagle Scout Publicity Plan a pdf document, Revision: 11-02-08. – Candidate for revision.

If you have any questions on any of the above documents, please contact your District Advancement Chair.
Rev: 02/10/14

Commissioner’s Blog 12


John Hovanesian, M.D.
Orange County Council Commissioner

“Three Reasons that Attending Scout Leader Roundtable Should Be Your New Year’s Resolution”

Dr. John Hovanesian

January 7, 2014

Happy New Year!  If you’re like me, most of your new year’s resolutions get dropped by the time Lent begins, but here’s one resolution you’re likely to keep once you get started: attending Scout leader roundtable every month.   What is roundtable?  It’s a monthly, one-hour get-together in your local community where parents and scout leaders help each other plan a great Scouting experience for Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts.  Roundtable is organized at Scouting’s district level (one or two cities usually make up a district), so it’s easy to get to, and the content is locally relevant.


Roundtable offers a lot to leaders and parents of Scouts:

  1. 1.    New, improved format.  Across our council, districts are adopting a more streamlined format for roundtables to be more exciting, inspiring, and helpful in carrying out a Scout leader’s job.  You’re’ going to see more active participation by everybody, and a whole lot more fun. That’s what a Scout meeting should be all about.
  2. 2.    Get energized.  There’s nothing to get you excited about being in Scouting more than meeting other great folks who spend their Tuesday nights like you do!  You’ll learn ideas from the best of the best and share your own great experience with others.
  3. 3.    Make great friends.  Just as your son will gain some of his life’s closest friendships through Scouting, so will you, as you meet with other parents and leaders who share your values and love for our program.

To learn about the location, day, and time of your local Roundtable contact