Michigan 4-H recognizes true leaders with 4-H State Awards

Thirty-one 4-H members honored for their outstanding accomplishments in leadership, service and life skill development.

July 27, 2018 - Author: Zach Robertson, Communications

2018 Senior 4-H State Award Winners. All photos by Michigan State University Extension.
2018 Senior 4-H State Award Winners. All photos by Michigan State University Extension.

Nearly 100 outstanding Michigan 4-H members gathered on the campus of Michigan State University (MSU) June 21, 2018, to celebrate their accomplishments through the Michigan 4-H State Awards Recognition program. During the event, 31 youth received Michigan 4-H State Awards, the highest honor bestowed on Michigan 4-H members.

Hosted by Michigan State University Extension, the awards ceremony was held at the Kellogg Center on the campus of MSU and attended by 4-H State Award delegates, their families, 4-H staff members and volunteers, industry partners, donors and sponsors.

“With more than 200,000 4-H’ers across the state, the youth honored with State Awards are some of our most elite 4-H’ers,” said Jake Dedecker, Acting State Leader of MSU Extension, Michigan 4-H programs. “Their commitment to bettering themselves and their communities through service and extensive 4-H work really make them true leaders in their clubs, counties and state.”

Michigan 4-H State Awards may be presented in 19 potential award categories that showcase the diverse array of 4-H knowledge, skills and experience. Recipients of the 2018 awards are:

  • Beef Science: Rebecca Herzog of Mecosta County (senior division).
  • Bird and Poultry Science: Fawn Muraske of Newaygo County (junior division) and Grace Schmidt of Livingston County (senior division).
  • Civic Engagement: Ganna Omar of Houghton County (junior division) and Paige Sweet of Monroe County (senior division).
  • Communications and Expressive Arts: Alivia Funchion of Monroe County (junior division) and Andrew Wittbrodt of Isabella County (senior division).
  • Companion Animal Science: Danielle Lamb of Cass County (senior division).
  • Consumer and Family Science: Kerrie Kraftchick of Monroe County (senior division).
  • Dairy Science: Rebecca Halveka of Menominee County (junior division) and Shannon Good or Kent County (senior division),
  • Environmental and Earth Science: Nathan Laurenz of Gratiot County (senior division).
  • Equine Science: Elizabeth Vincent of Monroe County (junior division) and Madison Rose Walcher of Menominee County (senior division)
  • Goat Science: Jaycie King of St Joseph County (junior division) and Kelsey Yarger of Monroe County (senior division).
  • Healthy Lifestyles: Haley Loehfelm of Kent County (junior division) and John Collins of St Joseph County (senior division).
  • Leadership and Personal Development: Jaren Schmidt of Monroe County (junior division) and Loren King of St Joseph County (senior division).
  • Rabbit and Cavy Science: Alexis Fisher of Monroe County (junior division) and Dale Mize III of Livingston County (senior division).
  • Sheep Science: Stuart Limbaugh of Iosco County (junior division) and Cassie Perrin of Muskegon County (senior division).
  • Swine Science: Jaycie Brown of Livingston County (junior division) and Carley VanNorman of Sanilac County (senior division).
  • Technology and Engineering: Nicholas Sheppard of Kalamazoo County (junior division) and Ethan Harbaugh of Monroe County (senior division)
  • Group Award: Meating the Need of Our Village; Addy Battel, Pearl Daskam, and Royce Daskam of Huron County

Junior 4-H State Award Winners

Junior 4-H State Award Winners

Group 4-H State Award Winners

Group 4-H State Award Winners

Michigan 4-H State Awards Program is open to 4-H members who are 13-19 years old with three or more years of 4-H experience. To qualify for the award, 4-H’ers must submit a written application that showcases the learning experiences, knowledge and skills they’ve acquired through their participation in 4-H, as well as their contributions to their local 4-H programs, clubs and communities. Submissions are reviewed by the Michigan 4-H State Awards selection committee. This group of volunteers, staff members and industry experts determine which members are selected as award delegates. Delegates are then invited to participate in one of two additional phases: an interview process for seniors (ages 16-19) and groups, in which their skills and experience are further evaluated, or a vigorous leadership program for junior delegates (ages 13-15).

“4-H is focused on building skills and providing learning opportunities,” DeDecker said. “Even the application process and interviews for State 4-H Awards was developed to prepare youth for college and the workforce. It is a significant and rewarding process for youth and we are grateful to acknowledge their achievements with the State 4-H Award honor.”

In addition to a physical award, each 4-H State Award winner in the senior division also receives a $200 cash award; junior winners receive $50 cash awards. These awards are made possible by the generous donations of the Michigan 4-H State Award Recognition program sponsors: the Allegan County 4-H Council, the Battle Creek Kennel Club, the Berrien County 4-H Leaders Assocation, the Calhoun County 4-H Club Council, Rebecca Gowan, the Houghton-Keweenaw 4-H Council, the Huron County 4-H Leaders Association, the Ingham County 4-H Council, the Ionia County 4-H Advisory Council, , the Isabella County 4-H Council, the Kent County 4-H Council, the Lapeer County 4-H Council, the Menominee County 4-H Foundation, Inc., the Michigan 4-H Goat Programming Committee, the Michigan Pork Producers Association, the Michigan Sheep Producers Association, the Michigan State Rabbit Breeders Association, Inc., the Monroe County 4-H Club Council, the Monroe County Teen Ambassadors 4-H Club, the Newaygo County 4-H Council, the, the Osceola County 4-H Council, Sharon and Harry Pratley, the Sanilac County 4-H Council, the Shiawassee County 4-H Council, Judith S. See, James and Donna Shoup, Sr., Donald and Jane Sisung, the St Clair County 4-H Council, the St. Joseph County 4-H Youth Council, the Richard J. and Mary Ann Sullivan Dunn Memorial Endowment Fund, the United Dairy Industry of Michigan, Van Buren County 4-H Leaders Association, the Washtenaw County 4-H Livestock and Dairy Committee, the Washtenaw County 4-H Advisory Council, James and Mary Yeomans and the Howard Zindel Memorial Endowment Fund.

To learn more about Michigan 4-H Youth Development, contact your local MSU Extension office or visit the Michigan 4-H website.

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