May 23rd - Retired Police Chief Receives Scouting’s Highest Service Honor

Retired Police Chief Receives Scouting’s Highest Service Honor

Neal Roger Johnson to be honored for decades of service to Scouting


San Diego, CAMay 23, 2008Retired Arcadia police chief Neal Roger Johnson has significantly impacted thousands of youth through his volunteer leadership of the Boy Scouts of America. For his decades of service to youth, the BSA National Council will honor Johnson with the Silver Buffalo Award at its Annual Meeting in San Diego on May 23.

            The Silver Buffalo Award, Scouting’s highest commendation for service to youth, has been awarded annually since 1925 to civic-minded men and women who stand out for their invaluable contributions and service to the youth of America.

Johnson has been a major proponent of Law Enforcement Exploring in California and across America. A former Cub Scout and Boy Scout, he started a police Explorer post in 1968 and served as its adviser for 28 years. Two of the Explorers he worked with are now chiefs of police in their communities. In 1971, Johnson organized the San Gabriel Valley Law Enforcement Explorer Academy and continues to coordinate two 13-week academies each year. He also has served on Exploring committees at the regional level and the National Law Enforcement Exploring Committee since 1986.

Johnson has served on the staff of each national Scout jamboree since 1985. At the last four jamborees, he served as chief of security, working with the FBI, Secret Service, Army Intelligence, and other agencies to safeguard the 50,000 Scouts and Scouters, as well as the many day visitors and VIPs who participate in the event.

“Neal has dedicated himself to safeguarding our youth, as well as the community, for 40 years,” said Bob Mazzuca, Chief Scout Executive. “The Boy Scouts of America is proud to recognize his commitment to safety and his efforts to invest in the next generation of law enforcement officers.”

Johnson has received the Silver Beaver and Silver Antelope awards. He has received numerous other awards for his service to youth. He now consults with Pomona Unified School District on security issues. When he retired, a scholarship was established in his honor to help young people attend the police academy. Johnson and his wife, Norma Jean, have four children and eight grandchildren.


About the Boy Scouts of America

Serving more than 4.6 million youth between the ages of 7 and 20, with more than 300 councils throughout the United States and its territories, the BSA is the nation's foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training. The Scouting movement is composed of 1.2 million volunteers, whose dedication of time and resources has enabled the BSA to remain the nation's leading youth-service organization. For more information on the BSA, please visit