J. S. Wilson

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J. S. Wilson
J. S. Wilson Michiharu Mishima December 1952.png
J.S. Wilson with Mishima Michiharu, Chief Scout of Japan, at the national training camp at Lake Yamanaka, on the slopes of Mount Fuji, December 1952
Secretary General of the World Organization of the Scout Movement
In office
Preceded byHubert S. Martin
Succeeded byDaniel Spry
Robert Baden-Powell and J.S. Wilson during the 4th World Jamboree held in Godollo, Hungary (1933). Baden-powell-4th-world-jamboree.jpg
Robert Baden-Powell and J.S. Wilson during the 4th World Jamboree held in Gödöllő, Hungary (1933).

Colonel John Skinner "Belge" Wilson (1888–1969) was a Scottish scouting luminary and friend and contemporary of General Baden-Powell, recruited by him to head the International Bureau, later to become the World Bureau of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. Wilson was Acting Director from 1938 to 1939 following the death of Hubert S. Martin; he was elected in 1939 and remained in office until 1951. He then became Honorary President of WOSM for four years.

Scouting World-wide movement for the education of youth, founded by Robert Baden-Powell in 1907

Scouting or the Scouts The Scout Movement is a voluntary non-political educational movement for young people open to all without distinction of gender, origin, race or creed, in accordance with the purpose, principles and method conceived by the Founder, Baden Powell. The purpose of the Scout Movement is to contribute to the development of young people in achieving their full physical, intellectual, emotional, social and spiritual potentials as individuals, as responsible citizens and as members of their local, national and international communities. During the first half of the twentieth century, the movement grew to encompass three major age groups for boys and, in 1910, a new organization, Girl Guides, was created for girls. It is one of several worldwide youth organizations.

Robert Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell lieutenant-general in the British Army, writer, founder and Chief Scout of the Scout Movement

Lieutenant General Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell,, was a British Army officer, writer, founder and first Chief Scout of the world-wide Boy Scout Movement, and founder, with his sister Agnes, of the world-wide Girl Guide / Girl Scout Movement. Baden-Powell authored the first editions of the seminal work Scouting for Boys, which was an inspiration for the Scout Movement.

World Organization of the Scout Movement international Scouting organization

The World Organization of the Scout Movement is the largest international Scouting organization. WOSM has 170 members. These members are recognized national Scout organizations, which collectively have over 50 million participants. WOSM was established in 1922, and has its operational headquarters at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and its legal seat in Geneva, Switzerland. It is the counterpart of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS).



Baden-Powell visited India in 1921, where he met and recruited Colonel Wilson, who was then Senior Deputy Commissioner of Police in Calcutta, and in his free time was serving as Calcutta's District Scout Commissioner.

India Country in South Asia

India is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country, and the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia.

Colonel Wilson ran Gilwell Park for The Scout Association in the early 1920s. He served as Director of the Boy Scouts International Bureau for 15 years, tasked with co-ordinating various Scout movements within countries and between them prior to the establishment of World Scout Regions. After retirement, he served as Honorary President of the Boy Scouts International Committee for a further four years.

Gilwell Park UK camp site and activity centre for Scouting and Guiding groups and other youth organizations

Gilwell Park is a camp site and activity centre for Scouting and Guiding groups, as well as schools and other youth organisations. The site also houses a training and conference centre, including the hosting of social events such as weddings and birthday parties. The 44 hectare (109 acre) site is in Sewardstonebury, Epping Forest, close to Chingford, London.

The Scout Association scouting organisation in the United Kingdom

The Scout Association is the largest Scouting organisation in the United Kingdom and is the World Organization of the Scout Movement's recognised member for the United Kingdom (UK). Following the origin of Scouting in 1907, the association was formed in 1910 and incorporated in 1912 by a Royal Charter under its previous name of The Boy Scouts Association.

To encourage the creation of Rovering in the Boy Scouts of America, the first Wood Badge course held in the United States was a Rover Scout Wood Badge course, directed by Wilson.

Rover Scout Scouting organization

Rover Scouts, Rovers, Rover Scouting or Rovering is a service program associated with Scouting for young men and, in many countries, women, into their early 20s. A group of Rovers is called a 'Rover Crew'.

Boy Scouts of America Scouting organization in the United States

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is the largest scouting organization and one of the largest youth organizations in the United States, with about 2.3 million youth participants and about one million adult volunteers. The BSA was founded in 1910, and since then, about 110 million Americans participated in BSA programs at some time in their lives. BSA is part of the international Scout Movement and became a founding member organization of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1922.

Wood Badge (Boy Scouts of America) Highest level of Scouting training for adults in the US.

Wood Badge in the United States is the highest level of adult Scout leader training available. It was first presented in England by the founder of Scouting, Baden Powell, and he introduced the program into the United States during a visit in 1936. The first course was held at the Mortimer L. Schiff Scout Reservation, but Americans did not fully adopt Wood Badge until 1948. The National BSA Council staff provided direct leadership to the program through 1958, when the increased demand encouraged them to permit local councils to deliver the training.

Wilson introduced an international Scout badge in 1939-a silver fleur-de-lis or arrowhead badge on a purple background surrounded by the names of the five continents in silver within a circular frame. The wearing of it was not universal, but was confined to past and present members of the International Committee and staff of the Bureau. A flag of similar design followed, the flying of which was restricted to international Scout gatherings.

World Scout Emblem logo of Scouting

The World Scout Emblem is the emblem of the World Organization of the Scout Movement and is worn by Scouts and Scouters around the world to indicate their membership. Each national Scout organization determines the manner is which the emblem is worn.

<i>Fleur-de-lis</i> stylized lily, heraldic symbol

The fleur-de-lis or fleur-de-lys is a stylized lily that is used as a decorative design or motif. Many of the Catholic saints of France, particularly St. Joseph, are depicted with a lily. Since France is a historically Catholic nation, the fleur-de-lis became "at one and the same time, religious, political, dynastic, artistic, emblematic, and symbolic", especially in French heraldry.

Colonel Wilson was awarded the Bronze Wolf, the only distinction of the World Organization of the Scout Movement, awarded by the World Scout Committee for exceptional services to world Scouting, in 1937. [1] In 1952 he also received the highest distinction of the Scout Association of Japan, the Golden Pheasant Award. [2] During a visit in Austria in 1957 he was awarded with one of the highest honours of Austrian Scouting the Silbernen Steinbock Silver Capricorn (on red-white-red ribbon). [3]

Scout Association of Japan The Scouting organization in Japan

The Scout Association of Japan is the major Scouting organization of Japan. Starting with boys only, the organization was known as Boy Scouts of Japan from 1922 to 1971, and as Boy Scouts of Nippon from 1971 to 1995, when it became coeducational in all sections, leading to neutral naming. Scouting activity decreased radically during World War II but slowly recovered; membership at the end of May 2017 was 99,779.

Golden Pheasant Award

The Golden Pheasant Award is the highest award for adult leaders in the Scout Association of Japan. It is awarded by the Chief Scout of Japan, awarded for eminent achievement and meritorious service to the Association for a period of at least twenty years. It may be awarded to any member of a Scout Association affiliated with the World Organization of the Scout Movement.

Austria Federal republic in Central Europe

Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a country in Central Europe comprising nine federated states. Its capital, largest city and one of nine states is Vienna. Austria has an area of 83,879 km2 (32,386 sq mi), a population of nearly nine million people and a nominal GDP of $477 billion. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Hungary and Slovakia to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. The terrain is landlocked and highly mountainous, lying within the Alps; only 32% of the country is below 500 m (1,640 ft), and its highest point is 3,798 m (12,461 ft). The majority of the population speaks local Bavarian dialects as their native language, and German in its standard form is the country's official language. Other regional languages are Hungarian, Burgenland Croatian, and Slovene.

Wilson took a six-year world tour reviewing the world's Scout organisations, culminating in a five-month tour of Asia in October 1952. Upon the 50th anniversary of World Scouting in 1957, Colonel Wilson took his research notes gathered on the trip and authored the publication of the first edition of the seminal work on world Scouting, Scouting Round the World.


Wilson, a colonel, became known for heading the Scandinavian branch of the Special Operations Executive during World War II. He was also involved in the Anglo-Norwegian Collaboration Committee, and for his work he was proclaimed Commander of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav. [4]

Further reading

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Magyar Cserkészszövetség

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Walther von Bonstetten World Scout Committee member

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Bronze Wolf Award The highest award in Scouting

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Ali al-Dandachi Scouting leader

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Salvador Fernández Beltrán World Scout Committee member

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Kō Yoshida

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Kenneth Henry "Ken" Stevens, CBE, DL served as the Chief Executive Commissioner of the Scout Association, Camp Chief's Deputy at Gilwell Park, and the Executive Commissioner of the 2nd World Scout Indaba held in June, 1957 to mark the centenary of the birth of Robert Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell, the founder of Scouting.,

Peter West Hummel was a geologist and oil company president, who served as the Vice-Chairman of the World Scout Committee as a Boy Scouts of America delegate to the World Organization of the Scout Movement.

Jan Volkmaars Dutch scouting leader

Evert Jan Hendrikus Volkmaars served as the Chief Commissioner of De Nederlandse Padvinders (NPV), as well as a member of the World Scout Committee.

Charles Dymoke Green Jr. served as a Commonwealth Scout Commissioner for the Scout Association until 1970, and as the Chairman of the World Scout Committee.


  1. "List of recipients of the Bronze Wolf Award". scout.org. WOSM . Retrieved 1 May 2019.
  2. reinanzaka-sc.o.oo7.jp/kiroku/documents/20140523-3-kiji-list.pdf
  3. "Aus Österreich-Bundeskorps". Unser Ziel-Monatsschrift für Pfadfinderführer (in German). Pfadfinder Österreichs: 31. October 1957.
  4. Kraglund, Ivar (1995). "Wilson, John Skinner". In Dahl, Hans Fredrik (ed.). Norsk krigsleksikon 1940-45 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Cappelen. Archived from the original on 1 March 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2008.

World Organization of the Scout Movement
Preceded by
Hubert S. Martin
Secretary General
Succeeded by
Daniel Spry