Girl Scouts Louisiana East Honors Gold Award Recipients

Published 7:00 am Saturday, July 2, 2022

NEW ORLEANS  Girl Scouts Louisiana East honored five area Girl Scouts with the Gold Award, the Girl Scouts’ most prestigious honor, during a pinning ceremony and celebration at the Old Governor’s Mansion in Downtown Baton Rouge on Wednesday, June 29.

Girl Scouts earn this award by demonstrating exceptional leadership, organizational skills, and completing a community service requirement. This year’s recipients are: Alyssa Bishop from Denham Springs High School; Alyssa Daigle from Nicholls State University; Lena Gunn from Mandeville High School; Giavanna Raby from Louisiana State University; and Lindsay Michel from Covington High School.

“We are proud of these five young ladies for their accomplishments in earning their Gold Award,” said Rebecca Pennington, CEO of Girl Scouts Louisiana East. “Their hard work and dedication to girl scouting proved successful, and we can’t wait to see all they will accomplish in the future.”

Alyssa Bishop’s love for animals fueled her inspiration for her project. She spent her time volunteering at Cat Haven where she learned of the volume of poison control calls for pets ingesting common indoor and outdoor houseplants. To combat this issue, Bishop conducted extensive research on plants, flowers and symptoms, creating an informative document titled “Kitty Toxin Awareness.” This document is housed on the Cat Haven website for distribution to pets and animal shelters, rescue groups and pet owners. Bishop is a graduate of Denham Springs High School and will attend Virginia Tech University in the fall to begin a major in Architecture.

Alyssa Daigle’s Gold Award project focused on adding more patriotism to her community. Daigle has been surrounded by veterans her entire life, and because of this admiration as well as her respect for the symbolism of the American flag, she partnered with a local veteran to create a flag retirement box. The box is a place where people can respectfully retire old and tattered American flags, and the local American Legion will properly dispose of the flag. Daigle is a graduate of MSA-West Academy and just completed her first year at Nicholls State University majoring in Psychology.

Growing up in a military family, Lena Gunn has been a devoted volunteer for Operation We Care, a nonprofit organization supporting military members and first responders with care packages and other resources. These experiences coupled with the ongoing pandemic, Gunn noticed the lack of volunteerism and awareness of military service in young people today. She created the “Military Mindset” to help grow awareness for military service and encourage volunteering for organizations that support the military. Gunn is a graduate of Mandeville High School and will attend LSU in the fall, majoring in Mechanical Engineering.

Lindsay Michel’s concern for the amount of time children and youth spend on social media and technology led her to create the Long Leaf Pine Savannah and Live Oaks Digital Catalog to get children outdoors and utilize their technology. Her project created a geocache and letterbox for children of all ages to use the tree-related clues on a scavenger hunt. She has also created other informational materials about the environment in Covington and hosted several informational booths. Michel is a graduate of Covington High School and will attend Nicholls State University to major in Biology with a focus on Marine Sciences.

Giavanna “Gia” Raby’s favorite Girl Scout memory involves Camp Marydale and its horse program. She started out as a Spur and is now a member of the Wrangler Show Team as well as a riding instructor. Because of her love for horses and riding, her project is named “Gia’s Riding Arena,” which focuses on tackling a program in the special needs community: appropriate active therapy that helps those with special needs with social interactions and exercise. She created an informational booklet that helps to educate trainers on cultivating horses that are friendly and compatible with special needs individuals. Raby is a graduate of Fontainebleau High School and currently attends LSU majoring in Psychology.

During the award ceremony, two scholarships were awarded. Giavanna Raby received the Kelly C. O’Mahoney Scholarship from Kelly Kicking Cancer. Lindsay Michel received a scholarship from Girl Scouts of the USA.

Girl Scouts Louisiana East

Girl Scouts Louisiana East (GSLE) is the leading organization for leadership development of girls, grades K to 12, in 23 parishes of southeast Louisiana. Chartered by Girl Scouts of the USA, GSLE serves over 10,200 girls, with 3,400 adult members. Girl Scouts offers every girl a chance to practice a lifetime of leadership, adventure, and success. To volunteer, reconnect, donate, or join, visit