AMES, Iowa – Eleven Iowa State University Extension and Outreach staff members were honored in October at the Iowa 4-H YouthFest professional development conference. Award recipients were recognized for their impact on local communities, accomplishments in their field and embodiment of the ISU Extension and Outreach 4-H mission.
The award ceremony was held over three days, Oct. 23-25, in Ames as a part of the annual YouthFest conference, which brings together ISU Extension and Outreach staff from all over the state to celebrate the work they are doing and participate in workshops and educational opportunities in the field of 4-H youth development.
“Iowa 4-H staff are among the best in the nation,” said Mitchell Hoyer, 4-H interim state program leader. “It is always exciting to recognize their outstanding accomplishments and congratulate them on their achievements.”
The Achievement in Service Award was given to Samantha Hardaway, Green County youth coordinator, and Katelyn Herzberg, Emmett County youth coordinator. This award is presented to county staff with three or fewer years in the position who have made a difference for the Iowa 4-H program in that short time.
The Distinguished Service Award was given to Megan Freel, Polk County youth coordinator, and Kiersten Gatewood, Humboldt County youth coordinator. This award is presented to county staff who have been in their position between four and 10 years and have made a difference in their 4-H community.
The Meritorious Service Award was given to Amy Green, Washington County youth coordinator, and Nancy McGrain, Monona County youth coordinator. This award is presented to county staff who have been in their position for over 10 years and have made a difference in their 4-H community.
The Youth Program Specialist Award was given to Cherry Sandeen, youth program specialist and southeast field supervisor; and Clark Colby, state 4-H arts, communication and design program specialist. This award is given to youth program specialists for their effort to support county staff programming and overall achievement in the position.
The Outstanding Team Award was given to Lisa Berkland and Earl McAlexander, 4-H youth specialists. This team was recognized for their work in Calendar Chat. This award recognizes a team’s efforts to work together and address an identified need or to create a successful programming effort. Berkland and McAlexander provide a light-hearted, engaging approach to delivering information that benefits staff at all levels across the state. Each month, Calendar Chat reaches at least 50 people, often attracting over 100 participants.
The Visionary Award is given to a team or individual who demonstrates an innovative programming effort, uses a different delivery method, includes a new avenue or partner or reaches a new audience. Krystal Schnabel, Franklin County youth and family outreach coordinator and former Wright County youth coordinator, was recognized for creating 4-H Clover Fest in Wright County. Wright County 4-H Clover Fest is a free family event with games, education and meals open to all. Iowa State University specialists bring education to the people with hands-on STEM activities, demonstrations and virtual reality while 4-H clubs host carnival games. Clover Fest excited new 4-H families and over 60 new youth gained interest in joining 4-H.
To learn more about these individuals and their work for Iowa youth, contact their respective ISU Extension and Outreach county offices.
Shareable photos and captions
- Achievement in Service Award winners Samantha Hardaway (left) and Katelyn Herzberg (right).
- Distinguished Service Award winners Megan Freel (left) and Kiersten Gatewood (right).
- Meritorious Service Award winners Nancy McGrain (left) and Amy Green (right).
- Cherry Sandeen received a Youth Program Specialist Award for her effort in supporting county staff programming and overall achievement.
- Clark Colby received a Youth Program Specialist Award for his efforts in supporting county staff programming and overall achievement.
- Earl McAlexander (left) and Lisa Berkland (right) received the Outstanding Team Award for their work on Calendar Chat.
- Krystal Schnabel received the Visionary Award for her work in creating Wright County 4-H Clover Fest.