Niece Receives her Ner Tamid from her Aunt, the First Female to Receive the Ner Tamid Award

3 Generations of the Nelson family have earned the Ner Tamid Award. (l-r) Peri Nelson-Sukert, Sheila Nelson, Joshua Nelson, James Nelson, Bruce Nelson

The Ner Tamid is the Jewish Religious Award for Scouts, BSA. Peri Nelson-Sukert of Mattydale, NY, who was the first female ever to earn the Ner Tamid (during a brief period when female Explorers were allowed to earn it), presented the Ner Tamid to her niece, Sheila Nelson of Cicero, NY, on March 26th, at the first Court of Honor held by Troop 150 sponsored by Saint Rose of Lima Catholic Church in North Syracuse, NY. Troop 150 is the first all-female Scout Troop in Longhouse Council. Sheila was one of the first girls in the nation to earn the Ner Tamid award in Scouts, BSA. Her brother, James Nelson, father, Joshua Nelson, and grandfather, Bruce Nelson, also earned the award in Boy Scouts.

The Ner Tamid award was the first religious award recognized by the Boy Scouts in the 1930's. All the other major religious have since arranged for similar awards for their faith groups.

The National Jewish Committee on Scouting administers similar awards for each Scouting program. The Maccabee Award is for Tiger Cubs and younger Cub Scouts. The Aleph Award is for older Cub Scouts. The Ner Tamid may be earned by Scouts in grades 6 to 9, and the Etz Chaim may be earned by older Scouts and Venturers in Grades 9-12. Information about earning the awards is available on