The Charles L. Sommers Alumni Association, Inc. (SAA) was incorporated in 1992 by a group of visionaries including former staff members, long-time volunteers, and supporters of the Northern Tier National High Adventures and Scouting. These organizers had a simple vision to organize a Minnesota non-profit corporation that would “provide a continuing interest in and support for the mission and programs of the Charles L. Sommers National High Adventure Base and the Northern Tier National High Adventure Program in keeping with the policies of the Boy Scouts of America.”
Operated exclusively for charitable purposes, the SAA’s exclusive charitable purpose has remained unchanged since its formation. Members of the SAA have directly and indirectly touched the lives of over 100,000 Scouts and Scouters who have participated in summer canoeing and extreme winter camping adventures. This support ranges from volunteer service hours to financial support, all of which ensure that the mission of “Delivering Wilderness Adventures that Last a Lifetime” continues for present and future generations of Scouts.
The SAA created the Triple Crown of National High Adventure award in 1995 and later the Grand Slam of National High Adventure award in 2014 to both promote the Boy Scouts of America’s National High Adventure programs and help identify those Scouts with a thirst for high adventure who may be interested in serving on the staff of Northern Tier High Adventure Bases and other National High Adventure Bases.
In furtherance of the SAA’s mission, has been solely responsible for and administered the Northern Tier Seasonal Staff Scholarship Program for over a decade. The program was originally co-developed by both the Northern Tier High Adventure Committee and the SAA, with the initial scholarships presented in 1998. It is well established that the retention of seasonal staff from one year to the next year enhances the quality of program delivered to participants and adults. Proceeds from the Triple Crown of National High Adventure and Grand Slam of National High Adventure program help fund the program and ensure the delivery of a high-quality program by retaining staff.