Meet Melissa Curiel! Melissa is co-director of Gems
of the Ozarks Service Unit and also leader of Troop 5197. Girl
Scouting has had a lasting impact on Melissa’s heart, and she loves
the opportunity it has given her to work with strong women and men and
raise young women of courage, confidence and character.
As co-director of the Gems service unit, Melissa plans, organizes
and implements the monthly service unit meetings, oversees the various
committee positions- and brings the committee together to create the
service unit calendar. Melissa also runs the Gems of the Ozarks
Facebook page, and helps individual troop leaders or service unit
teammates with questions or difficulties that arise in their troops.
Melissa’s involvement with Girl Scouts started with her oldest
daughter. When she learned about Girl Scouts and wanted to get
involved, but couldn’t find a troop in the Rogers area, Stacye Wyatt
in Springdale offered to let her join their troop in Springdale. This
kicked off Melissa’s love for Girl Scouts. Melissa tips her hat to
Stacye for her help and guidance in the early days of her Girl Scout
career. “I really got bit by the Girl Scout bug.” Melissa shares.
As far as troop leadership goes, Melissa got her first taste of the
role with her youngest daughter’s troop. “Another mom and I, Kimberlea
Murphy, took on the roles of leadership of that troop. That was eleven
years ago, and I've never looked back.” Last year, in addition to her
own group of older girls, Melissa started a Daisy Troop in Rogers. “I
was able to help them grow and they now have an awesome group of
parents leading their troop. The troop has grown from 12 to 18 girls!
I'm so proud of them. I cannot think of anything more satisfying than
watching my little group of girls grow up from 1st graders to now 12th
graders who are moving off to college.” Melissa says all her Girl
Scouts will always hold a place in her heart, and each of them have
been an incredible blessing in her life.
Melissa has her own personal experience with Girl Scouting. “I was a
Brownie and in a troop in Springdale. I have fond memories of meeting
after school and my parents taking me to events, like Wild and
Wonderful at Camp NOARK.” Her favorite memory of her days as a Girl
Scout was the day Good Morning America came and filmed the Springdale
Service Unit. “We stood in a large group to be filmed and have our
picture taken. I had to be 7 or 8 years old, but I still remember it today.”
While Melissa has had many adventures with Girl Scouts, her favorite
memories are with her girls. “We’ve traveled to Little Rock, St Louis,
Colorado, New York, and even Canada. Even with all these amazing
trips, my favorite memories with my girls have been our campouts at
NOARK.” Melissa’s favorite place in the world is Camp NOARK. For
Melissa, Girl Scouts is “that place”- a place just for girls to truly
become amazing leaders of courage, confidence and character.
Girl Scouting is a large piece of Melissa’s heart and her
day-to-day, but she also loves to read and hike. “Is having a lot of
cats a hobby? If it’s not, it should be! I wish I could rescue every
cat I could find, but I stopped at four.” Melissa is married to her
high school sweetheart, and they have been married 25 years, with
three wonderful children, her four cats, and a grand-puppy! Melissa
graduated from University of Arkansas with a degree in early childhood
education and additional certifications. “I passed my Science Praxis
from things I’ve learned in Girl Scouts,” says Melissa.