BOONE, Iowa – Volunteers are the backbone of Boone County’s 4-H program. Adult 4-H volunteers were recognized at the 4-H Awards Day held Sunday, Nov. 13 in the Community Building at the Boone County Fairgrounds.
Kathy Toms was the winner of the 4-H Alumni Award. Kathy Toms was a member of the Boone County 4-H Club the Colfax Happy Hustlers. This year marks Kathy’s 25th year volunteering with the 4-H program. While her children were in 4-H, she volunteered as a club leader for Luther Livewires. He has also served two four-year terms on the Youth Commission.
You may recognize Kathy from Fashion Day, where she has served as the Fashion Day Superintendent for the past 10 years. Kathy is a very passionate volunteer who always makes sure all members enjoy their 4-H experience. He has a big heart and encourages members to give back to others in various ways.
The Friend of 4-H award was presented to Donna Monson. For the past 16 years, Donna Monson has served the 4-H program from behind the scenes as an elected official on the Boone County Extension Council. The Boone County Extension Council is the governing body that oversees Boone County 4-H. Donna Monson has served as president for her 16 years of service. She is very dedicated, reliable and committed to the world of 4-H and youth development. The youth staff appreciate that you are always available to help resolve situations or sign the huge stack of new member certificates each year. She also volunteers her time at the 4-H Foodstand each year and helps with the cleanup process after the fair. The impact Donna has had on Boone County 4-H cannot be measured, but it is greatly appreciated.
The Friend of 4-H Award was presented to Tim and Vicki Heiller. You may recognize the smiling faces of Tim and Vicki Heiller from the 4-H Foodstand this past fair. The 4-H Foodstand is Boone County 4-H’s largest fundraiser raising funds to send youth to many educational events such as conferences and camps, funds to provide educational workshops, club supplies and more . Under Tim & Vicki’s leadership, the 4-H Foodstand had the highest revenue on record.
Before this year, however, Tim and Vicki were also involved in many aspects of the 4-H program at the state and local level. Tim and Vicki served as Luther Livewires club leaders for several years. Vicki also served on the board of the Iowa 4-H Foundation, including as board president.
The Meritorious Service to 4-H Award was presented to United Bank of Iowa. United Bank of Iowa opened a branch in Boone in 2019 and since then they have been giving back to 4-Hers and the 4-H program. For the past four years, United Bank of Iowa has been a strong supporter of the Market Livestock Auction, donating funds both to the Auction Support Fund and directly to the 4-H’ers themselves. In March and November, you can find Andy helping serve tortillas or burritos to raise money for 4-H scholarships. United Bank of Iowa is also a sponsor of the Boone County Fair.
One of the highlights of the 4-H Awards Day program is the presentation of the Fran Thompson Memorial Outstanding Leader Award. This year’s winner was Sara Bryan. Sara Bryan has been a club leader for the Westside Hustlers 4-H Club for the past eight years. During his time as a club leader, the Westside Hustlers 4-H Club has grown into the largest club in Boone County. Sara does a great job of making everyone feel welcome and valued.
Sara is passionate about giving back to the community and you will often see her volunteering at school and community events. You’ll also see her cheering on members at school and sporting events, as well as at the county and state fair. Sara always encourages club members to have fun and participate in the many activities 4-H offers.
Ten 4-H volunteers were presented with Shamrock pins during the awards ceremony. A forty-year 5-point diamond pin was awarded to Peg King. Two twenty-five year emerald pins were awarded to Barb Clawson and Kathy Toms. Two fifteen-year pearl pins were awarded to Danette Garcia and Nicole Jonas. Three ten-year gold pins were awarded to Jennifer Derry, Kevin Meier and Stacy Walters. Two five-year silver pins were awarded to Rachael Beckett and Rus Schmidt.
During the Awards Day program, members of the Boone County 4-H Recognition and Recordkeeping Task Force also presented awards to 4-H members and recognized 4-H club leaders. Seventeen youth were installed as members of the 2022-2022 County 4-H Council.
If you are interested in learning more about volunteering with the 4-H program, contact the Boone County ISU Extension and Outreach office at (515) 432-3882.
Outstanding 4-H Leader
Friend of 4-H
Meritorious Service to 4-H
(article and photos contributed, Boone County 4-H)