James Bird, of Boy Scout Troop 264 in Rockford, just became the 11th Eagle Scout in his family. Bird has been involved in the scouting program since his First-Grade year, as a Tiger Scout. He progressed through Cub Pack 3264, earning the highest rank of Cub Scouts, the Arrow of Light. As Bird continued his family tradition of earning the Eagle Rank, he joins other notable men in the rank, such as President Gerald R. Ford, Steven Spielberg and Mike Rowe.
The rank of Eagle culminates an in-depth journey of Merit Badges, Leadership positions, Service Projects and finally, the Eagle Project. The Eagle Project benefits some aspect of the local community. In Bird’s case, he identified a need at the North Kent Bible Church. The church had all their equipment for their baseball field stolen, so Bird designed and built a storage shed, a picnic table and two benches for their field. He also fund raised enough money to purchase the church new baseball equipment.
James Bird credits his dad’s influence for joining scouts. He enjoyed Cub Scouts, reveling in the Pinewood Derby and the Dad & Lad Bake sale. During his time in Troop 264 he stated he learned many leadership lessons and created many lasting friendships. He also cited Jen Betz, Assistant Scout Leader in Troop 264, as being a strong force in his achieving Eagle.
Bird is a Senior at Rockford High School. He is a member of the National Honor Society and the Young Democrats Club (though he stated he is a Republican). Bird is also an integral part of the varsity Baseball team, playing Short Stop and 3rd Baseman. Bird will be attending Hope College in the Fall of 2018, studying Pre-Med and hopes to become a Pediatric Ophthalmologist.