COLUMBIA CO., N.Y. — Emily Stark, Ruth Kress, Alexis Hoffmann and Emma Leifer have been chosen to receive the 2017 Outstanding 4-H Member Award from the 4-H Club Program of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Columbia and Greene Counties.
The Outstanding 4-H Member Award is given to 4-H members who are at least 16 years old and are selected on a basis of number of years in 4-H, quality and variety of project work, involvement in county and community service activities, as well as completion of project records. This award is sponsored by the Columbia County Agricultural Society and the Fortnightly Club of Catskill.
Emily is the daughter of James and Ilene Stark. They live in the Town of Greenport and she attends Taconic Hills High School. She has been a 4-H member for twelve years and is currently a member of the Carrot Crunchers 4-H Club and the Columbia Country Feeders 4-H Club.
Emily’s outstanding project areas have been sheep, swine, goat and beef cattle, where she has participated in many activities including the Veterinary Science program. Emily has blossomed into an outstanding young woman and often lends a helping hand in and outside of the show ring to her fellow 4-H members. Emily has grown her skills and achieved the highest award possible when she won Master Showperson of all breeds at the Columbia County Fair in 2016. Emily participates annually in the 4-H livestock auction were she sells her project animals to help support our community and build her college fund. Emily is also the lead youth member of the 4-H Livestock Advisory Committee she was the designer of an awesome program shirt worn by those participating in the livestock project area.
Ruth is the daughter of Erich and Emily Kress. They live in the Town of Livingston. Ruth is homeschooled and has been a 4-H member for fourteen years, beginning as a Cloverbud member in kindergarten. She has spent all of her 4-H years as a member of the Wilderness Workers 4-H Club, of which her mother is the organizational leader.
Emma is the daughter of Eric and Dorthee Leifer. They live in the Town of Livingston where Emma attends Germantown Central School and has been a member of the Wilderness Workers 4-H Club for eight years.
Ruth and Emma are the best of friends and their 4-H experience has been a joint one. They have excelled in a number of project areas including gardening, foods and nutrition, expressive arts and animal science. Often their county fair exhibits have been selected to go to the NYS Fair where they have done well. Ruth and Emma join their other club members in consistent community service work – in particular visiting nursing home residents several times a year to share their music and help make the residents’ days special. Teaching younger club members comes naturally for them so they have been a major help in their 4-H club as junior leaders. Emma and Ruth have been perennial participants in our local public presentation program, having been selected for district competition numerous times. Ruth began even as a three year old “pre” cloverbud, advising the audience on the difference between wooden, rubber and real ducks. Emma is in charge of her family’s dairy cow, which she has shown at the county fair and has shared a public presentation demonstrating the making of hard cheese from her cow’s milk, which she now makes frequently. Ruth and Emma’s leadership skills continue to be put to use as teen evaluators for both public presentations and county fair. Over the last few years they have immersed themselves in the forestry project, having attended NYS 4-H Forestry Camp several times and, in 2017, excelling to the point of becoming one half of the four person NYS forestry team to the National 4-H Forestry Invitational held in West Virginia.
Alexis is the daughter of Laurae Hoffmann and lives in the town of Kinderhook and is a freshman at New York University in New York City studying film and writing. Alexis has been a 4-H member for thirteen years, beginning as a Cloverbud, in the Udderly Impossibles 4-H Club that her aunt, Roberta Keller, is the organizational leader of.
Alexis is best known for her outstanding project work in clothing and textiles, foods and nutrition, expressive arts, photography and woodworking. But, she also worked hard in the dairy cattle project and showed often at the Columbia County Fair. Because of her outstanding skills she was a great asset in her 4-H club as a junior leader in clothing and textiles and foods and nutrition. Alexis ably represented our local 4-H program three times in the NYS Fair 4-H Fashion Revue where she not only walked the runway several times each day but was a commentator and mannequin model. Finally, Alexis used her leadership skills as a 4-H Teen Evaluator and as the 4-H member representative when she spoke with the Columbia County Board of Supervisors about what she has gained from 4-H.
Emily, Ruth, Emma and Alexis are examples of how membership in a community 4-H club can lead to personal growth and development that prepares youth to be able to participate fully in their communities and careers.
Cornell Cooperative Extension is an employer and educator recognized for valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and Individuals with Disabilities and provides equal program and employment opportunities. The programs provided by this organization are partially funded by monies received from the Counties of Columbia and Greene.
4-H is New York’s only youth development program directly connected to the technological advances and latest research at Cornell University. 4-H participants learn leadership, citizenship and life skills through hands-on projects in three primary program areas: science and technology; healthy living; and citizenship. To find out more about 4-H programs in Columbia and Greene Counties contact us at 828-3346 or Columbiagreene@cornell.edu or visit our website, www.ccecolumbiagreene.org .
—Linda Tripp, 4-H Issue leader
Cornell Cooperative Extension of Columbia and Greene Counties
For more articles out of New York, click here.