Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council welcomes new members

Fourteen youth from 11 counties were selected for leadership roles on the Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council.

2019 State Youth Leadership Council members
2019 State Youth Leadership Council members during a leadership training to kick off their year. Photo by Jackie Martin, MSU Extension.

The Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council serves as the premier leadership opportunity for Michigan 4-H members. The council brings together youth from across Michigan to learn about their unique 4-H experiences in order to gain a better understanding of 4-H programs statewide, making them natural spokespeople for the Michigan 4-H program as a whole. Additionally, the council serves as an avenue for youth voice and perspective on statewide 4-H programs and priorities.

This year, 2019, celebrates the fifth year of the council. Since its inception, 69 youth have been selected to serve on the council representing 34 counties across Michigan. The council continues to increase in its popularity, with more applicants applying each year beyond the capacity of the council.

In 2018, State Youth Leadership Council members represented state and local 4-H programs over 35 times throughout the year ranging from awards programs, promotional events and media interviews. The council also established task-centered and youth-driven committees, providing increased opportunities for leadership across the council. Since 2017, four youth completing their terms as State Youth Leadership Council members increased their leadership responsibilities, serving as peer-advisors for the council, working alongside the adult staff advisors. All decisions related to organizational and leadership structure are driven by the members.

The new State Youth Leadership Council members in 2019 are as follows. They will serve on the council through December 2020, serving a two-year term.

  • Jenna Budd, Belleville, Wayne County
  • John (Jack) Collins, Sturgis, St. Joseph County
  • Katherine Erickson, Kingsford, Dickinson County
  • Alivia Funchion, Monroe, Monroe County
  • Ajani Knox, Rochester, Oakland County
  • Savannah Mauk, Grand Ledge, Eaton County
  • Myranda Montoye, Chelsea, Washtenaw County
  • Makyla Nelson, Ravenna, Ottawa County
  • Maezie Nettleton, Chatham, Alger County
  • Amy Saxton, South Boardman, Kalkaska County
  • Mathew Seidel, Troy, Oakland County
  • Jael Tombaugh, Potterville, Eaton County
  • Abby VanDyk, of Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo County

One member applied and was selected for a second two-year term on the council. Katrina Lomas of Monroe, Monroe County, will complete her second and final term in December 2020.

These youth join existing State Youth Leadership Council members on the second year of their two-year term, concluding their respective terms in December 2019.

  • Addy Battel, Cass City, Huron County
  • Miriam Cook, Pewamo, Clinton County
  • Pearl Daskam, Ubly, Huron County
  • Noah Doederlein, Carleton, Monroe County
  • Jade Ebels, Hersey, Osceola County
  • Torey Fischer, Battle Creek, Calhoun County
  • Lillian Gendron, Munising, Alger County
  • Brooke Gersewski, Lachine, Alpena County
  • Ethan Harbaugh, Monroe, Monroe County
  • Jacie King, Burr Oak, St. Joseph County
  • Asya Modert, Bronson, Branch County
  • Allie Purves, Clarkston, Oakland County
  • Grace Schmidt, South Lyon, Livingston County
  • Bailey Welshans, Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County
  • Carrie Willoughby, Shepherd, Isabella County

The staggering of terms provides an opportunity for second-year members to serve in leadership roles within the council and after they’ve had a year to learn about the group, its dynamics and goals.

Based on their availability, State Youth Leadership Council members are able to visit counties to enhance educational offerings, assist with recognition events or promote 4-H programs locally. To schedule a visit from a State Youth Leadership Council member, please contact staff advisor Jackie Martin at marti623@msu.edu or 734-222-3877.

Applications for the 2020 Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council will be available this summer. Additional information on Michigan State University Extension youth leadership and civic engagement programs are also available at MSU Extension’s Leadership, Citizenship and Service website. To see the kind of impact these types of programs have on youth, we highly encourage you to look at MSU Extension’s Impact Reports.


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