Western Region Officers

Western Region VOA


Jessica Kent – Region Venturing President

Contact: WR.Venturing@scouting.org

IMG_5945-720x480Jessica Kent joined Venturing after she connected with a Crew that was leaving on her 14th birthday to backpack across Catalina Island for 6 days. Being the avid adventure seeker and outdoorsperson that she is, she leapt at the chance. During that trek, Jessica learned about the importance of Venturing and began to share it with others. She became involved with Crew leadership positions, planning and marketing events to bring growth. In 2014, Jessica became the Council VOA VP of Programs, becoming the Council VOA President the following term.

Jessica currently attends the University of Utah studying Civil, Environmental, and Nuclear Engineering. Originally part of Crew 412, in Fountain Valley, California, she has earned her Venturing Silver, Ranger, and Religious awards. Now a part of Crew 9410 in Salt Lake City, she is working toward her Trust, Summit, and Super Nova awards. She has served on staff at her councils summer camp for four years, and is currently the Western Region VOA VP of Communications. Camping nearly 200 nights and volunteering over 800 hours in her Venturing career, she has attended Jamboree 2013, VenturingFest 2016, Powder Horn O’ahu, and is looking forward to staffing Jamboree later this summer.

Jessica intends to create effective and informative visibility throughout the region by engaging youth in the ways they succeed best. Her plans this term include improving communication between and within the VOA, starting VOAs in Areas 2 East and West (as well as supporting and continuing growth in Areas 1, 3, 4, and 6), and continuing to connect with Venturers in the Region to educate them about their support systems and opportunities, among other small tasks – like promoting VenturingFest 2018 and the 20th Anniversary of Venturing to name a few.

Advisor: David Wilson

Contact: wrvoa.advisor@gmail.com

IMG_7120Howdy and welcome to the 2017-18 WRVOA! I have the honor to be able to serve each of you as your WRVOA advisor & Venturing Committee Chair. It’s a tough job, but somebody has to do it, and that’s me! I live in the Utah National Parks Council where I have been involved in all sorts of scouting programs and events. I’ve been a member of the BSA for over 45 years, and (hopefully) still going strong. There are numerous “goals” that I could list related to my assignment as the WR Advisor. They can all be summed up into three short statements: Lead-Guide-Walk Beside the Venturing youth (and then Get Out of The Way!) Walk the Talk of a Servant Leader “If it’s to be, It’s up to me.” I’ve had the opportunity to experience many unique Scouting events. As a youth (many eons ago) I was a participant at the World Jamboree in Japan. Due to the fact that there was a typhoon coming right at us, the whole Jamboree was evacuated to the neighboring towns and schools. My Troop was sent to a local school where we had to stay and NOT leave due to the fact that there had just been a murder in the area and the officials were concerned about our safety as foreigners! Not to upset Reece too much, I have to state that orchids are my favorite flower as I’ve been growing them all of my life. It’s not easy doing it in Utah (dry climate, and high altitude, but it’s still satisfying).

I’m a member of the LDS Church (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), and for over 13 years has the opportunity to serve as their Chaplain at Philmont. Philmont is Awesome!! IWTGPTP Philmont is truly “God’s Country” and HOmE to me. Finally I have been married to my ever patient and loving wife Charlene for over 40 years, and we have six (very different in style, interests, and yet all have been involved in scouting in one way or another) children. They are all boys, except for my five daughters.

Sarah Chen – Region Vice President of Administration

Contact: vpadmin@wrventuring.org

Sarah-Chen-PicSarah Chen is a member of Orange County Council located in Santa Ana, California, which is a part of Area 4 in the Western Region. She is currently registered in Crew 1210 and has been involved in Scouting since the age of 13 1⁄2. She joined Scouting because she strongly believes in the purpose of Venturing as a youth-led program focused on high adventure, public service, and leadership development. She originally founded Crew 1210 as a high-adventure crew after seeing her brother have so much fun in his Boy Scout troop. It was not until she was exposed to the VOA did she realize what leadership and passion towards Venturing is. To this day, she is constantly inspired by her VOA peers and continue to do the best to live up to the Venturing motto.

Sarah is a senior in the Classical Voice Conservatory at the Orange County School of the Arts. She studies voice with Christin Cornell and has been her student for five years. Honors include: Classical Singer National Semifinalist; Musical Arts Regional Competition; Professional Opera Singers’ Association 2nd Place. Performances include: Susanna in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Dorabella in Mozart’s Così Fan Tutte, Ginevra in Handel’s Ariodante, and Fidelio in Beethoven’s Fidelio. During the summer of 2016, Sarah performed in major cathedralsand churches in Austria and Germany and sang chamber works with a select group of chamber singers from her school.

Outside of singing, Sarah enjoys volunteering at the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Long Beach as a Teen Ambassador. She was awarded at Capitol Hill for earning the Congressional Gold Award, where she dedicated more than 400 hours to voluntary service, 200 hours of personal development, 200 hours of physical fitness, and 5-day exploration/expedition. Sarah will attend Stanford University in the fall studying Science, Technology, and Society.


Advisor: Tina Tharratt

IMG_7080Hi everyone! My name is Tina Tharratt and I live in El Dorado Hills, a smallish community just east of Folsom, CA. I am in Area 3, Golden Empire Council. With 3 boys (and an Eagle Scout husband), it was pretty much a given that I would be involved in scouting and, I have been a registered leader for almost 20 years now. I became involved in Venturing about 10 years ago when my oldest son decided he wanted to start a crew. Since then I have had a number of wonderful experiences: multiple Philmont treks, multiple National Scout Jamborees, World Scout Jamboree in Japan, backpacking in the sierras. But, I think my most memorable Venturing activity was Venturing Fest 2016. A group of 8 youth and 4 adults travelled from Sacramento to Chicago to New York City by train. We spent some time sightseeing in NYC and then took another train to the Summit for Venturing Fest. It was a BLAST! My favorite ice cream flavor usually involves coffee flavor ice cream, sometimes mixed with chocolate. I love the outdoors, hiking, camping, backpacking and generally exploring. A little known fact is that I have been on top of Mt Whitney (highest point in the continental US) twice. I also climbed to the top of Mt Fuji when I was visiting Japan for the WSJ in 2015. My goal for this term is to assist Sarah in any way she needs so she can be as successful as possible in meeting her own personal goals for the term.

Reece Kilbey – Region Vice President of Communications

Contact: vpcomms@wrventuring.org

20525956_620130431516599_2912208510540021209_nReece is a member of the Aloha Council located in Honolulu, Hawaii. Reece has been involved in Scouting since he was 9 with Pack 364 in order to make friends and immerse himself in the outdoors. Reece is currently registered in Scouting as a member of Crew 808, a crew he founded, where he serves as the Crew President. Additionally, Reece previously served as the Area 6 VOA Vice President of Communications as well as the Aloha Council VOA Vice President of Communications. Reece is very passionate about leadership having served as the SPL of his Council’s NYLT course. He served on staff for NYLT Leadership Academy for the Western Region. He will attend The University of Hawaii – Manoa in the fall, studying Botany and rare plants, where his passion for orchid and endemic Hawaiian plants can thrive.

Reece is very excited to engage the Western Region in new and exciting ways while focusing on developing the Venturing program and communication methods within the Region and Areas.

Advisor: Larry Peterson

IMG_7104I’m Larry Peterson and I live in Portland in the Cascade Pacific Council. My number one goal for the year is to make Reece look like the rock star he is (so I’ll have a lazy year?). I served on staff for the World Scout Jamboree in Sweden: Making friends, sharing stories and being crazy with Scouts from all over the world is definitely my greatest Scouting memory. Rogue One is my favorite Disney movie at the moment, even though it’s a classic romance movie plot. My favorite flower is a Columbine, Colorado’s state flower, because we lived there for 15 years. If I were a dog, I’d be one of Harry’s basset hounds, because he spends 45 minutes cooking for them every evening and generally spoils them rotten. Most people don’t know that I was on the cover of Boys Life. (I just found the February 1977 issue online! I’m third in line.)



Quan Phung – Region Vice President of Program

Contact: vppgrm@wrventuring.org
IMG_7016Quan Phung is currently attending San Diego State University and is majoring in International Security and Conflict Resolution. He is active in both Area 4 and Area 6 of the Western Region as a part of Crew 279 in Orange County Council and Crew 9999 in San Diego Imperial Council. Quan is an Eagle Scout, has earned the Venturing Discovery Award, and participated in a Kodiak Challenge. He serves as a staff at Camp Fiesta Island in San Diego and is currently the Western Region Area 6 VOA Vice President of Programs.
Quan wants to increase participation by creating a diverse and meaningful activities to fit the broad range of interests in the Venturing program, as well as mentoring youth in developing these opportunities for themselves.

Advisor: Liz Finley 


I live in a small community in northeast Nevada named Elko and I am a Part of Nevada Area Council. We are the number one gold producing town in the USA. I hold a Masters Degree in Biology from WSU (WAZZU), the town I was born in but I traveled across the state to PLU for my undergraduate work. In 2007 I served at the WSJ in GIlwell and in 2015 I was Assoc. Advisor Comm. for the WR Venturing Crew. My main goal this year is to make sure that Quan and the youth have a Rockin’ Fantastic Spring Event in an out of this world Fantastic Camp with Fantastic Venturing youth from the Region, and that Quan will be the “most excellent” VP of Program that I know he can be. My favorite Scouting memory is sitting around a campfire with my husband’s Troop and Crew listing to the crazy stories that the youth and adults tell about their day and having some nice hot smores. My favorite color is Purple and Magenta (ok that is two) and my favorite movie is Toy Story. My favorite Disney character is Buzz Lightyear –”To infinity and beyond!” My not so well know fun fact about myself is that I used to be a competitive swimmer –”back in the day”– and I was small college National Champion in 1983 for the 200IM. My PLU record in that event held until 2005.