I consider it an honor to have been chosen as the new CEO. Everyone I have met has been so welcoming. Thank you for such a gracious inclusion into the GSSI family!


Joining Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois on December 5, 2016, I have a long leadership history in the non-profit world, especially in the areas of strategic planning, transformational leadership, financial management and organizational design. More importantly, I imagine you are interested in my commitment to girls. Throughout my adult life, my passion has been focused in two areas: providing opportunities through Girl Scouts that empower girls which are our “true north” and advocating for social change that fosters an inclusive society that allows all people with disabilities to live fully-engaged and self-directed lives.  As CEO, I am committed to ensuring GSSI provides quality programming and opportunities to our girls so they can develop their full individual potential; relate to others with increasing understanding, skill, and respect; develop values to guide their actions and provide the foundation for sound decision making; and play a major role in making the world a better place.


Girl Scouts has been a part of my life since 1st grade. I was a girl member through high school earning the First Class Award, currently called the Gold Award, and came back to Girl Scouts as an adult lifetime member. Working in the Chicagoland area, I was the Executive Director of Girl Scouts of Whispering Oaks from 2001-2005. After merging with Girl Scout of DuPage County to become Girl Scouts-Prairie Winds, I became the Chief Human Resources Officer (2005-2008) and played an integral role as a Transitional Vice President (2008-2009) in merging the seven local councils to become Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana. 


Coming from a family of Girl Scouts, I have always been drawn to the Girl Scouts’ unwavering commitment to empowering all girls. Girl Scouts has played an integral role in shaping the woman I am today and has given me the passion and values to use my skills and experience to lead GSSI in a way that provides all girls throughout our council opportunities to achieve success whatever the topic or the way they choose to learn and explore.


Having been through two Girl Scout mergers, I know how much work is involved in creating a new council and want to commend everyone who played a role in making Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois such an outstanding council. While I am aware we still have several issues we need to bring to resolution, this is a new day for Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois. I invite everyone to join me in moving forward. This is OUR council. Please stand with me.


Spending time throughout the entire council, meeting volunteers and interacting with the girls, is important to me so look for me at events, camp programs and meetings. I am so excited to play a role in positively influencing our girls who will be tomorrow’s leaders


Sarah Durbin

Chief Executive Officer


The Girl Scout Mission:

Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.

The Girl Scout Promise:

On my honor, I will try:
to serve God and my country,
to help people at all times,
and to live by the Girl Scout Law.

The Girl Scout Law:

I will do my best to be
honest and fair,
friendly and helpful,
considerate and caring,
courageous and strong, and
responsible for what I say and do,
and to
respect myself and others,
respect authority,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place, and
be a sister to every Girl Scout.

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