Words to Know

Here are some of the common words and leadership positions you may encounter early in the Scouting experience:

BSA: Boy Scouts of America. This is the umbrella organization that provides the base content for all Scouting programs.

Pack: A pack is the name for the large group that a Cub Scout belongs to. All packs have numbers that identify them (“Pack 125,” for example). Scouting’s older-boy program, Boy Scouting, is organized into large groups called TROOPS, and the coed teenage program, Venturing, is organized into CREWS. Troops and crews also are indentified by numbers. All packs, troops, and crews are commonly referred to as UNITS.

Den: Den is the common name for the smaller, working group (typically six to eight boys) of Cub Scouts. Dens are organized by age and/or grade. In large packs, there may be more than one same-age and/or -grade den. All boys between 7 and 10 years old join a Cub Scout pack, but they do most activities with their buddies in the smaller dens.

Chartered Organization: This is the common name for the community, house of worship, or other local organization that serves as the host of one or more Scouting units.

Local Council: A council is the local service area of the Boy Scouts of America. Each council is directly responsible for the organization and support of the Scouting programs for a specific geographic area. If you would like to find your local council office, click here .

Cubmaster: This volunteer position is often (but not always) held by a parent of one of the boys in the pack. It is the top volunteer position in every Cub Scout pack and is basically the person who makes sure the pack is moving together and in the right direction.

Den Leader: This volunteer position is often (but not always) held by a parent of one of the boys in the den. Den leaders work with (six to eight) boys. They organize and hold the weekly den meetings, which are outlined in the Den & Pack Meeting Resource Guide .

Commissioner: This volunteer position is assigned to work with select units to help the leaders deliver a fun and safe program.

District Executive: This is a paid position. A district executive is a Scouting professional and works as a staff member for your local council. They are assigned specific communities within the area served by your council. Sometimes a district executive is referred to as a “DE.”