AMES, Iowa — Twenty 4-H members recently returned from Atlanta, Georgia, where they represented Iowa 4-H at National 4-H Congress Nov. 29 through Dec. 3.
These 20 delegates were selected by 4-H volunteers from around the state through an application and interview process as a part of state 4-H recognition day last March. The application process for this opportunity focuses on experience and proficiency in leadership and civic engagement activities.
“National 4-H Congress is a 4-H tradition that spans over 90 years,” said Bonnie Dalager, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach 4-H youth program specialist. “Each year, over 900 young people from around the country travel to Atlanta to participate in educational workshops, hear from world-renowned speakers and build their 4-H network.”
Jorge Boland of Linn County made the most of this opportunity. “National 4-H Congress was life-changing,” he said. “I am able to be more outgoing after listening to inspiring keynote speakers, working in groups with people I didn’t know and learning about what we as 4-H members can do to support our communities. The best part is that National 4-H Congress was tons of fun.”
Iowa 4-H delegates to National 4-H Congress enjoyed activities including an internationally-themed banquet, a trip to the Atlanta History Center and a day of service. For the service learning activity, groups were sent to 13 area Atlanta parks, schools and nonprofits to assist with a variety of tasks, including preparing books for children overseas, and teaching elementary students about agriculture.
The Iowa 4-H Foundation provided funding for Iowa’s delegates to National 4-H Congress, with the support of donors including Iowa Farm Bureau and Iowa Pork. For more information on how to apply for National 4-H Congress through state 4-H recognition day, please contact your ISU Extension and Outreach county office or visit the Iowa 4-H website at www.extension.iastate.edu/4h.
The following 4-H members were Iowa’s delegates to National 4-H Congress.
Black Hawk County 4-H member Ellie Brown is the daughter of Derek and Carrie Brown. A nine-year 4-H member, she has participated in food and nutrition, fashion revue, sewing and needle arts, photography, and rabbit project areas. She has been selected for state Awardrobe clothing event. She attends Hudson High School and has served as president, vice president and treasurer of her 4-H club and is a member of the county 4-H council.
Buena Vista County 4-H member Michelle Anderson is the daughter of Loren and Lisa Anderson. A seven-year 4-H member, she has participated in cattle, swine, communication, home improvement, and visual arts project areas. She attends Sioux Central High School, serving as class president, and participates in many activities. She is a member of the 4-H Fairfield Pioneers 4-H Club, Buena Vista County youth council and state 4-H council.
Cerro Gordo County 4-H member Emily Shatek is the daughter of Tim and Gayle Shatek. A seven-year 4-H member, she has participated in dog, child development, food and nutrition, and communication project areas. She attends Newman Catholic High School and serves on the Cerro Gordo County teen council and state 4-H council.
Hancock County 4-H member Liliana Hill is the daughter of Jerri Hill. An eight-year 4-H member, she has participated in child development, photography, communication and clothing project areas. She attends West Hancock School. She has been the president and secretary of her club and is the vice president of county council. She participates in county and state 4-H councils. She is the vice president of her class and FFA chapter reporter, has been to All-State individual speech, and volunteers at the National Hobo Museum.
Johnson County 4-H member Alyse Erenberger is the daughter of Dan and Mary Erenberger. A nine-year 4-H member, she has participated in cattle, horse and pony, poultry, dog, and photography project areas. She attends Solon High School and is a member of the Graham Champions 4-H club as well as the Johnson County youth council.
Linn County 4-H member Jorge Boland is a three-year 4-H member who has participated in the Linn County youth council. He has also done communication projects and photography, and has shown chickens at the fair. He attends Prairie High School and is currently the vice president of his 4-H club.
Mills County 4-H member Emma Seipold is the daughter of Bret and Karen Seipold. An eight-year 4-H member, she has participated in photography, sewing and needle arts, clothing and fashion, and communication project areas. She attends East Mills High School and has been treasurer, secretary and president of her 4-H club. She has been involved in the Mills County 4-H youth council and the state 4-H council.
Mills County 4-H member Justin Wells is the son of Craig and Katie Wells. A five-year 4-H member, he has participated in beef, goats, communication, visual arts and leadership project areas. Justin attends East Mills High School and participates in cross country, track, wrestling and FFA. Justin is a member of county and state 4-H council and enjoys mentoring a junior 4-H member.
Polk County 4-H member Gabriella Neddermeyer is the daughter of Eric and Theresa Neddermeyer. A nine-year 4-H member, she has participated in sewing, photography, STEM and visual arts project areas. She is student body president at Saydel High School and participates in many extra-curricular activities. She is president of the Ankeny 4-H club and a member of the Polk County 4-H council.
Polk County 4-H member Jocelyn Najera-Solis is the daughter of Marisa Solis and Rogelio Najera. A four-year 4-H member, she has participated in citizenship day, planning teams and is also part of a leadership group at her school called Polar Bear Crew. She attends North High School and has been co-president for her 4-H club. She has participated in many activities in her county and state level.
Poweshiek County 4-H member Theresa Crawford of is the daughter of Dennis and Renny Crawford. As an eight-year 4H member, she has participated in a wide variety of project areas, including communication, sheep, food and nutrition, and STEM. She is very active in many activities at Grinnell High School and has held several leadership positions in her 4-H club and county council.
Sac County 4-H member Logan Blum is the son of Nathan and Jamie Blum. A seven-year 4-H member, he has participated in woodworking, communication, baking, civic engagement and horticulture project areas. He also shows rabbits. He attends Ridge View High school, where he participates in speech, basketball and choir. He is on the county council for Sac County.
Story County 4-H member Ben Rima is the son of Marcia and Neil Rima. As an eight-year 4-H member, Ben has participated in the project areas of civic engagement, leadership, communication, photography, and food and nutrition. He is a member of the Culinary Club and serves on the Story County youth council and also the state 4-H council.
Van Buren County 4-H member Josiah Westercamp is the son of Steven and Christine Westercamp. A seven-year member of the Jolly Trio 4-H club, he has participated in project areas including communication, clothing, horticulture, rabbit and swine. He has been treasurer, historian and reporter for his club. He is homeschooled and plays football for the Van Buren Warriors.
Washington County 4-H member Roy Carter is the son of John and Kim Carter. A seven-year 4-H member, he has participated in beef, swine, civic engagement, communication and woodworking project areas. He attends Washington High School and has served as secretary, treasurer, reporter and recreation chair of his 4-H club. He is a member of the Washington County 4-H ELITE project team and was selected as a World Food Prize Iowa Youth Institute delegate.
Webster County 4-H member Morgan Border is the youngest daughter of Mark and Sheila Border. She is an eight-year member of the Douglas Dreamers, serving as president, vice president and secretary as well as serving on the county council. She is passionate about volunteering, and has raised over $50,000 through the Stay A-Breast fundraiser she founded in sixth grade as a civic engagement project. She also participates in communication, leadership, clothing selection, food and nutrition, and visual arts. She attends St. Edmond High School.
Woodbury County 4-H member Sarah Nelson is the daughter of Eric and Carol Nelson. An eight-year 4-H member, she has participated in sheep, food and nutrition, sewing and needle arts, civic engagement, horticulture, and photography project areas. She attends Woodbury Central and has been vice-president and secretary of her 4-H club and serves on the Woodbury County 4-H youth council.
Worth County 4-H member Kelsie Kinne is the daughter of Sarah and Kevin Kinne. A seven-year 4-H member, she has participated in multiple project areas including clothing, sewing and needle arts, welding, woodworking, and goats. She attends Central Springs High School and is a member of the student council and National Honor Society. She has been secretary and historian of her 4-H club and has participated in her county council. One of her biggest 4-H accomplishments was attending the 2019 National 4-H Conference in Chevy Chase, Maryland.
Worth County 4-H member Reece Nelson is the son of Brad and Irene Nelson. A seven-year 4-H member, he has participated in communication, sheep, beef, outdoor adventures and safety in shooting sports, food and nutrition, and clothing project areas. Reece is an active member of two 4-H clubs, Worth County council and the Worth County 4-H livestock judging team. He attends Glenville-Emmons High School and is in FFA, student council, plays the trumpet in band and enjoys playing varsity football, basketball and baseball.
Wright County 4-H member Shea Whaley is the daughter of Bryan and Allison Whaley. She is a seven-year member of the Wright Warriors 4-H Club. Shea has provided many years of leadership to her club, serving as historian, reporter, secretary and currently president. She has been active as a member of the county council, provided leadership for a Kid’s Day Fair Activity, and enjoys working for the Wright County Junior District Fair. During her 4-H years, she has participated in beef, veterinary science, photography, leadership, communication, and food and nutrition.
— Bonnie Dalager, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
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