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Area Business Leaders Pledge $33,000 to Boy Scouts

Eagle Scout, Coca-Cola executive tell tales of Scouting and the leadership traits it fosters.

The almost 70 business leaders from Alpharetta, Milton, Johns Creek and a bit of Roswell who attended the Golden Eagle Breakfast pledged $33,000 to support the Milton District of the Atlanta Area Council of Boys Scouts of America this morning, Jan. 20.

These business people who attended the breakfast at aren't the active former Scouts who regularly volunteer and take part in Scouting activities, though several said they planned to start or resume that kind of work.

Eagle Scout Eric Beppler, out of , spoke to the business people about what he's learned through Scouting, and how it has prepared him for life. (Watch the accompanying video highlights of his use of the Public Speaking merit badge.)

Gary Fayard, executive vice president and chief financial officer of the Coca-Cola Company, said businesses are looking for the leadership traits Scouts learn.

"The world is thirsting for those kinds of leaders that Boy Scouts create," Fayard said.

Companies need employees and future leaders who are courageous, loyal and trustworthy, he said, and all the other qualities developed by Boy Scouts.

Tracy Techau, the chief executive officer of the Atlanta Area Council, said Scouting is a worthy investment.

"In difficult times people look for worthy investments," he said.

He described the work of the council, saying the Milton District alone has more than 3,200 youth from Alpharetta, Johns Creek, Milton and Roswell participating. They are helped by the more than 1,200 registered volunteers.

Scouts from families who don't have the resources are being helped. Techau said in 2011 the Atlanta Area Council stepped up financial support for boys who need extra resources to get to camp, with 300 additional families able to participate. And 650 boys received partial or full scholarships last summer to attend camps, with that number expected to increae this summer.

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