That survey showed an organization divided by age and, in some cases, by region.
"While a majority of adults in the Scouting community support the BSA's current policy of excluding open and avowed homosexuals, young parents and teens tend to oppose the policy," the survey said.
A BSA spokesman at the time called the issue "among the most complex and challenging issues facing the BSA and society today."
"The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved societal issue," the group said after Thursday's decision.
Chief Scout Executive Wayne Brock said, "Our goal through all of this was to put kids first ... It allows us to serve youth who want to be part of scouting."
A long time grappling with a polarizing issue
The BSA for years has been at the center of the debate over gay rights.
A recent Washington Post-ABC News Poll showed that 63% of Americans said they would support allowing gay youths to join the Boy Scouts.
The vote comes more than a decade after the Supreme Court ruled that the organization has the right to keep out gays but also at a time of declining participation in the organization.
Membership in Boy Scouts has declined by about a third since 1999. About 2.7 million people now participate nationwide.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, after the vote, said it will continue to work with the BSA.
"Sexual orientation has not previously been -- and is not now -- a disqualifying factor for boys who want to join Latter-day Saint Scout troops," it said in a statement.
It was too early to tell what impact the decision might have on scout troops, and whether some families may join other organizations.
The impending vote did spur action by a new organization called Faith Based Boys. Thomas Dillingham, an official from that group, said applications will be accepted starting in August for youth members and group leaders.
"Christian churches and organizations will use this program to continue serving God by training young men to have good character through service to their communities," Dillingham said Thursday. "The profound need for a nationwide program like this has now been realized and the relevance of such a program will only become more important as time goes on."
Tico Perez, the BSA's national commissioner, said there have been ongoing talks with churches and others opposed to the inclusion of gay scouts.
That said, he echoed other Boy Scout officials in saying they believe that Thursday's vote ultimately helps advance the cause.
"We're accepting youth," Perez said, "and we're excited about where we are."