Pleasanton Weekly

News - May 7, 2010

Fairground's Rick Pickering earns top Scouting award

Distinguished Eagle Scout status goes to limited number of Americans

by Jeb Bing

Rick Pickering, the chief executive officer of the Alameda County Agricultural Fair Association - which operates the Alameda County Fair - has been named a Distinguished Eagle Scout.

This national award is granted to a limited number of Eagle Scouts who have distinguished themselves in their life work and who have shared their talents with their community as active volunteers. Of the 2 million Eagle Scouts in the U.S., only one in a thousand has been presented with the national Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.

The Western Fairs Association, in concert with the San Francisco Bay Area Scout Council and the Boy Scouts of America, nominated Pickering for the award.

Pickering has served as president of the Western Fairs Association, the California Fairs Service Authority and the California Authority of Racing Fairs. He is also a board member of the California Construction Authority, and chairman of the California Fairs Alliance. He was named by Amusement Business Magazine as "One of the Most Creative CEO's in America" and is Pickering is a top leader in California's billion-dollar fair horse racing industry.

"Rick Pickering is the 'go-to' guy in our industry," said Stephen Chambers, executive director of the Western Fairs Association. "He is regularly called upon to help address the most complex financial, legal and political issues in our very complicated industry."

"As we approach the 200th anniversary of fairs in America, we are proud that fair management has become recognized as a valuable profession, and that Rick Pickering is being nationally recognized as one of our most talented leaders - a CEO that leads with exemplary character," Chambers added.

Pickering was a 1st Class Scout at Maxwell Park elementary school in Oakland. He obtained the rank of Eagle Scout with Crossed Palms while attending Pittsburg High School, where he also served as student body president. As an adult Scout, he serves as an assistant Scoutmaster for Troop 941, assistant advisor for Crew 940 and backpacks every six weeks with older Scouts.

He has received numerous Scouting awards including the National Vigil Honor, Silver Beaver Award, District Award of Merit, God and Country Award, and more. He is currently the president elect of the board for the San Francisco Bay Area Scout Council, which has more than 40,000 members.

He holds a master's degree from the University of Southern California and a bachelor's degree from Biola University in La Mirada, Calif. He and his wife Dawn have three sons: Chris and Nick, who are also Eagle Scouts, and Josh, a Life Scout.

Pickering will be presented with the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award at a dinner at the Airport Hilton in Oakland on June 2, where more than 200 Bay Area Scouts will be honored for reaching the ranks of Eagle Scout.

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