2018 Hall of Fame
Rita Adam, Van Wert County
Rita’s positive impact is both that of numbers and emotion. She is an avid supporter of 4-H Camp Palmer. Rita has supported youth and 4-H statewide by helping youth attend events and supporting projects. She has given generously to the camp and programing through both time and financial contributions. Rita attends residential camp in the heat of the summer, leading the dining hall, helping campers with their money as the banker, and giving support to crafting activities. She is a long-time advisor of the Harrison Jolly Booster’s 4-H Club, which recently celebrated its 100th anniversary. She has helped youth with their projects, served as a judge for projects, and developed judging requirements for sewing projects. She has supported projects through awards as well as working closely with youth. Her support is so appreciated that many of the youth she helps call her grandma.
Fred Deel, Gallia County
Fred has been involved with the Gallia County 4-H program and Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp for over 40 years and actively continues to volunteer since he retired from Extension. Fred has always bled green. He has been a constant champion for his county, his community, and the 4-H program as a whole. He worked hard to expand programs beyond the county level so they could impact people across the state and even beyond Ohio. Fred served as Director of the Ohio Governor’s Office of Appalachia as well as serving as Gallia County Commissioner. He continues to be involved in Gallia County. Fred was and still is a teacher at heart. He also realized that Extension work is another piece of the education puzzle and is desperately needed in all areas but especially southeastern Ohio.
Ramona Stout, Delaware County
Ramona was the organizational advisor for the Shawnee Hills Braves and Maidens 4-H Club for 16 years until her death in 1979. She started the club because there was not an organization in the community for youth to join. She offered a wide variety of projects to the youth in the southwestern part of Delaware County. Ramona would find someone to teach the kids for any project of interest to them. Ramona never wanted lack of resources to hold anyone back and help find the resources they needed to participate. She was a strong supporter of the Delaware County camping program. Since her passing in 1979, a memorial camp scholarship was started and offered to deserving 4-H members with financial need. Thirty-five youth have had the opportunity to experience 4-H camp because of her influence. In 2017 she was inducted into the Delaware County 4-H Hall of Fame.
Bobie Williams, Williams County
Bobie has been a 4-H volunteer for over 25 years both as a club advisor and as an International County Coordinator for a 7 county area in Northwest Ohio. Many local 4-H groups have benefited and learned from the international presentations Bobie provides to them, along with her presence in the international booth at the Williams County Fair. She has worked with over 550 Ohio families and 4-H youth traveling abroad. Bobie spends hours calling club members and advisors to make them aware of 4-H international opportunities. Bobie’s talents and dedication have made her Ohio’s top ICC and as the leader amongst her peers, she has positively impacted youth and adults throughout Ohio. She teaches the “New ICC Training” each January, inspiriting others from around the state with her enthusiasm and organization skills.
2017 Hall of Fame
Rebecca Cropper, Brown County
Becky served as the Brown County 4-H Educator for 33 years and made significant impacts not only in Brown County, but throughout the entire Ohio 4-H program. During her tenure, she developed the state-wide CARTEENS program, developed a multi-county Ag Reality workshop to teach the importance of budgeting, wrote “On Campus with Cornelius” to introduce Cloverbuds to the idea of college, and developed many other programs. Even after retirement, Becky continues to share her expertise with others. She possesses a passion for helping youth explore their skills and put them to good use. Her goal is to improve her community to make it a place that the children will want to be contributors in the present, and most importantly, in the future.
Sharon Shivers, Guernsey County
Sharon made a tremendous impact on hundreds of youth and their families in Guernsey County throughout her 52 years as a 4-H volunteer. As the main advisor of the Good and Willing 4-H Club, Sharon led by example, serving youth who needed 4-H and had very little else in the way of a positive influence. She was a wonderful example of a giving person. Guernsey County is fortunate she chose 4-H to benefit from the time and efforts she gave. Sharon served on the Guernsey County 4-H Council for at least 30 years, gave 20 years of service to the 4-H Camp Piedmont Board of Directors, and helped to plan the decorations for the Ohio 4-H Conference for 15 years. Through her endeavors, she faced challenges, welcomed new opportunities, and truly lived a life of service.
Judy Siman, Medina County
Judy became a Medina County 4-H volunteer 42 years ago and served as an advisor for the Junior Leaders and Fashion and Nutrition Board. She taught members valuable workplace skills, how to solve problems, and how to work with others. She inspired them to imagine, create and believe in themselves, and she always taught them to “Make the Best Better.” Judy’s goal for being a 4-H volunteer was to ensure that teens enjoy 4-H as much as she did at their age. In addition to her work with teens, Judy served on the county 4-H Family and Consumer Science Committee and the 4-H Advisory Committee. She provided ideas for innovative and motivational awards to help create excitement for youth members to encourage them to put forth their best effort. Judy leads by example and motivation, encouraging teens and adults to discover deep satisfaction in a job well done.
Tom Wilhelm, Ottawa County
Through his years of service in Ottawa County, Tom Wilhelm served as a club volunteer, camp staff member, Junior Leadership Club advisor, Teen Leadership Middle Manager, 4-H Advisory Committee member, and is the current president of the County Extension Advisory Committee. He has become the program’s “go-to-guy,” for anything that needs done. Tom was instrumental in developing Seneca County’s CARTEENS program and continues as an advisor for that program. He served as a chaperone for the Ohio Teen Conference and Ohio 4-H CARTEENS Conference and taught sessions in the county upon returning. Currently, Tom is developing a program called “Healthy Choices” to address current issues youth are facing and promote alternatives. Many clubs call on Tom for advice on how to keep their youth actively engaged. Youth stay in touch with him to share how 4-H impacted their lives.
2016 Hall of Fame
Karen Kotula, Wood County
Karen is a life changer simply by taking the words “service learning” and practicing it at club meetings and every other way imaginable. As the organizational advisor of the Dowling Stich, Stir, and Stock 4-H Club since 1999, thousands of lives have been touched with her generous donation of time and talent. She has taught members to embrace service learning and to her 4-H kids, community service is a huge part of what you do as a 4-H Club. Her members are often known for their service learning, long after they graduate from 4-H. Some of the service projects her club members have accomplished include: making quilts for the neonatal unit at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Toledo, sewing pillows for the Northwest Ohio Hospice Center, and collecting shoes for Greensneakers. Because of Karen’s persistence and personal support she has raised over $39,000 for 4-H programming. She shares her enthusiasm for 4-H with anyone who will listen.
Crystal McElhaney, Knox County
Crystal has been a 4-H volunteer for 18 years and has served on the advisory committee for both Knox and Belmont Counties. She is an advisor for the Lighthouse 4-H Club in Knox County which typically has just under 50 members. She is a member of the Knox County 4-H Planning Committee and has served on the fundraising, budget and United Way grant committees garnering $39,000 over a five year span for 4-H programs. Crystal has served on the Knox County Junior Fair Sales Committee for five years representing 4-H and the poultry division of the Knox County Fair. As poultry superintendent she has served as the Pullorum tester. She implemented a Poultry Ambassador program to select a youth to represent and promote the poultry industry during the fair. She has been on the Ohio 4-H Conference committee for ten years – particularly on the program and education subcommittee. She has presented at the conference and serves as the co-chair for 2016.onna is described as the “Complete 4-H Volunteer Package.” Her personality, creative teaching style, and knack for working with a variety of audiences have kept her calendar full of 4-H events for the past 23 years.
Cathy Rice, Ashland County
Cathy has had many roles in her years of service to 4-H in Ashland County. She was the 4-H advisor for the “R” Gang 4-H Club for many years and now is currently the treasurer of the County 4-H Committee and is responsible for the budget of $20,000 annually. Cathy is described as having a strong work ethic and is a person with integrity who does what she says she is going to do. She always has new ideas for the program and is willing to take the extra time to work with youth. Through the years she has taught at 4-H Officer Conferences, volunteered to teach at Quality Assurance programs, helped prepare the presentations and skill stations for 500 youth each year, and organized county 4-H community fundraisers. Cathy is also in charge of the Junior Fair building at the county fair and always has new ideas to advertise the benefits of the 4-H program to the public.
Joan Stauffer, Ashland County
Joan has had a positive impact on thousands of 4-H members in Ashland County and beyond in her 26 years of service to the program. She is involved at the club level – as an advisor of two clubs, and also on the county level – as a member of several program area committees, Travel Club advisor, junior camp volunteer, CARTEENS leader and certified shooting sports instructor. She has been a member of the 4-H Committee for 20 years and held every office. She was a member of the 4-H Rabbit and Poultry Committee for many years and is currently the President of the 4-H Rabbit Committee. She is an advisor to the Junior Fair Board leading a group of 25 4-H members who work to plan and run the junior fair. Her legacy will be the lasting impact she has had on youth and the large number of former members bringing their children to her for 4-H experiences is a testament to her strength in programing and strong leadership.
2015 Hall of Fame
Donna is described as the “Complete 4-H Volunteer Package.” Her personality, creative teaching style, and knack for working with a variety of audiences have kept her calendar full of 4-H events for the past 23 years.
Since 2003, Donna has led the effort to sell more than 10,000 milkshakes at the Wood County Fair each year to earn more than $243,000 for the Wood County 4-H program. She collaborated with other youth-serving agencies and helped write grants to create the innovative program known as “Power of Youth.” Through this program, over 800 participants have received hands-on training to effectively work with youth audiences.With her quilting skills, creativity, and patience, she has assisted 4-H’ers in the construction of hundreds of quilts that were donated to individuals in hardship situations. She has even co-authored two Ohio 4-H project books about quilting. Her nominators say they are truly blessed on so many levels that Donna chose to invest her time with the 4-H program.
Ronald C. Cull
For 35 years Ronals "Ron" Cull has served as a key leader for multiple engineering projects. He serves as an Ohio State Fair judge for rocketry and volunteers locally for project judging. He isn’t afraid to share a new idea, praise people for their hard work, or even criticize when it is needed. Ron is retired from being a rocket scientist at the NASA Plum Brook Station and is respected by his peers and his local 4-H community. Ron has served as the co-chair of the Ohio 4-H Conference and the North Central Region Volunteer Forum. He now oversees the marketplace of the Ohio 4-H Conference. Ron has grown the marketplace to include a variety of vendors and educational displays that are of interest to both adult and teen volunteers. According to his local 4-H Educator, Angie Holmes, Erie County is fortunate to have Ron Cull. He not only has impacted numerous youth and adults locally, he has also made an impact on the state and national level with his volunteer roles.
Marvin's 4-H experiences don’t stop at the Ohio border. He was a 4-Her in New Jersey and later became a 4-H agent—first in New Jersey and then in New York. He moved to Ohio in 1980 and immediately became a volunteer with Montgomery County 4-H. While working as the CEO of Five Rivers MetroParks in Dayton, he dreamed of developing a facility with a program targeted to urban youth in a limited-income neighborhood. Marvin’s dream came true with the opening of Adventure Central. Adventure Central provides a place for urban youth to build trusting, positive relationships with caring adults for the purpose of connecting youth and their parents with nature. According to one of his nominators Marvin’s leadership, ingenuity, perseverance, and passion for 4-H ideals and values helped Adventure Central to have a tremendous impact on countless youth and their families. Otherwise, these individuals may not have had access to the wonderful opportunities offered by 4-H and Five Rivers MetroParks.
Mary of Athens County is dedicated to educating youth and adults in all aspects of textiles, clothing, and the art of sewing. In 1997, she became a charter member of the Master Clothing Educator Class and was certified in 1998. She donates more than 100 hours annually to local and state clothing and textile programs. Many of you are probably familiar with her work. She authored the embellish Ohio 4-H project book which passed the National 4-H peer review. She has taught countless workshops across the state. For the past seven years she has been a member of the Ohio 4-H Conference decorations sub-committee, and from 2012-2014 she served as the co-chair of the conference planning committee. Mary has served in many leadership roles on her local Athens County 4-H committee and 4-H Endowment Committee. In the community she has served as a costume designer for the Drama Club’s Theatre productions, for the Ohio Valley Summer Theatre production of Annie, and for the feature-length independent film “The Other House.” Mary’s dedication to 4-H is inspirational.
2014 Hall of Fame
Donald has been a member and a volunteer in Mahoning County 4-H for 67 years. One example of his community service work was the fundraising campaign he helped support to build the youth building at the Ohio State Fairgrounds. It was due to his efforts that his club made the greatest contribution of any club in Ohio to the fundraiser. Don shows the 4-H community in action, not words, the importance of community service. As a member of the first Mahoning County 4-H Royal Court, he promotes the Royal Court and the other 4-H activities to youth, always encouraging them to do more. He is visible to the 4-H community, working each year at the Junior Fair food stand during the county fair. In addition, he has assisted many 4-H members in his club and others with their projects with his agricultural and mechanical knowledge.
Debi has been an advisor for the Cherry Lyme Tail Enders 4-H Club for the past sixteen years. During her time as a volunteer, Debi has been an essential part of the 4-H Dairy, Market Animal and 4-H Committees in Ashtabula County. Debi uses every opportunity to help prepare youth for the future by teaching life-skills. While her club has traditionally been dairy animals, Debi has embraced the expansion of the program and expanded her club to encompass the changing needs of youth and their families. In addition to her other committees, in 2012 and 2013, Debi helped to facilitate the activities at Ashtabula County’s Ag Day in May. This collaboration between Ohio State University Extension in Ashtabula County and Ashtabula County Farm Bureau exposed 1300 county first-grade students to the connection between farm to plate. Debi led a station about dairy products and helped to chaperone the event.
Linda began her long term contribution to 4-H as a 4-H member. As a youth she was involved in the food and fashion board, junior fair board and junior leaders club. After aging out of the program, Linda became an advisor with the Lorain County Shooting Sports Program. Linda’s passion for shooting sports provided an opportunity for her to master the skill of pistol shooting. She currently teaches 4-H members across four counties as well as educating and mentoring youth during various competitions across the state. For the last five years, she has taught shooting sports to hundreds of youth who attend summer camp on Kelley’s Island. Because of Linda’s knowledge of shooting sports and her willingness to share her talents, Linda is one of the most sought after shooting sports instructors. The number of 4-H members taking shooting sports has skyrocketed and the number of volunteers being certified has increased tremendously.
2013 Hall of Fame
Bob is a dedicated 4-H supporter who began his leadership in 4-H as a member in Licking County. Throughout each life stage Bob has contributed to the 4-H program. He was named the President of Collegiate 4-H and President of Agricultural Council while in college. Following his service in both the US Army and the reserves, he was able to use his experience to promote Operation Military Kids to a new audience of 4-Her’s. While working with Abbott Food Company as a nutrition scientist, Bob helped to make connections with 4-H and the business world. This has provided continued sponsorship from Abbott for grants, the Ohio 4-H Food and Nutrition Award, and the Food and Nutrition Awards at the Ohio State Fair. During the past ten years Bob has also served as a member of the Ohio 4-H Foundation Board. Under Bob’s leadership, the Ohio Foundation’s request to place an Ohio Historical Marker at the site of the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center has been approved.
Leland has been a 4-H volunteer in Mahoning County for 43 years. At the county level, Leland donates trophies and other awards to encourage participation, has been a role model for the 4-H Royal Court candidates having been a 4-H king himself, recruited youngsters to attend Cloverbud Day Camp, and participated in the Mahoning County Extension Advisory Committee by bringing needs of the community to the Extension Office. Leland was also an avid camp enthusiast and promoted 4-H Camp Whitewood throughout Northeast Ohio. At the state level, he worked with former State Specialist Denny Elliot to refine the Ohio State Fair Outstanding of the Day awards structure to make it more equitable for members and also participated in the Shopping Bag Contest from its inception. Leland inspires 4-H youth with his enthusiasm to try projects and challenges they never would have on their own.
Vernon has been active with 4-H since he was a child enrolled in livestock projects. As a parent and advisor, he has guided 4-H youth through 4-H camps, project judgings, county and state fairs. He has served as an advisor with Elm Grove Livestock Club which is a 54 year old club. Currently Vernon serves on the 4-H Endowment Committee to help ensure the continuation of 4-H in Williams County. He also extended his love of 4-H outside of Williams County by hosting two LABO exchange students from Japan and has promoted the IFYE program to others. He also organized an effort to ship hi-lysine corn to areas of the world to people in need. Through this idea, he became a founding father of what became the Foods Resource Bank. Through all these things Vernon’s life exemplifies the 4-H pledge.
Bill has served as a 4-H advisor for 60 years in Delaware County. His influence has extended throughout the state with participation in 4-H dairy activities and the dairy industry. Bill has guided members in the dairy quiz bowl, dairy judging contests, spring dairy expo, the Ohio State Fair, the Ohio Skill-a-thon Contest, and the district 10 shows. Bill has been an exemplary role model and mentor to hundreds of members through the 4-H program. Under Bill’s direction, parliamentary procedure is taught and used at each meeting and public speaking skills are learned by members completing a demonstration on each project. In addition, numerous community service projects continue to be completed by the Ashley Jr. Farmers 4-H Club due to Bill’s commitment to being a good citizen. Bill embodies the spirit of the 4-H motto “to make the best better.”
2012 Hall of Fame
Annis has been involved in the 4-H program for 51 years as a volunteer. She works on the club, county, state, national and international level to promote and support the 4-H Program. Annis has served as the International County Coordinator for Ashland County for 30 years, placing and supervising dozens of LABO exchange participants. She has traveled to Japan several times and served as a leader, chaperone and teacher for the program. She often teaches at the Ashland County Officer and Advisor Training and has helped with many project clinics and workshops. She is an excellent club advisor and her clubs are often full to capacity.
Wynn has been an advisor to the South Central Livestock 4-H Club since 1986. During his time as a volunteer, Wynn has been involved with the Ashtabula County Junior Fair Board, Extension Advisory Committee and the Market Animal Committee. One of his major achievements includes suggesting the Market Animal Committee’s annual reverse raffle fundraiser. During the fair Wynn is always working hard in the hog barn and on the grounds to ensure that the 4-H youth are safe with their animals and punctual to the show ring. Wynn has dedicated a large part of his life to educating youth and is willing to help anyone anytime. He brings many exceptional qualities to the 4-H program in the county. Wynn believes that when we all work together to get things done we can build a better future for our youth.
Barb is a dedicated 4-H supporter and volunteer who has worked tirelessly throughout her life to strengthen and expand the Ohio 4-H International Program. As an International County Coordinator from Hardin County, Barb gives an average of 20 hours of service each week year-round. Barb’s talents and dedication have made her Ohio’s Top ICC, and as the leader amongst her peers she has impacted youth and adults throughout Ohio. She generously shares knowledge with other ICC’s so they don’t have to recreate the wheel. She teaches the new ICC training section of the Ohio ICC Conference each January. Barb frequently travels to Columbus to spend three days with our large groups of international visitors who live with Ohio 4-H families. Each year Barb hosts the mid-point weekend in her home. Barb has been a staunch advocate of Ohio 4-H, giving tirelessly both behind-the-scenes, as well as becoming a strong public presence and community voice for the importance of 4-H’ers learning about diversity and other cultures. She has served as host mother for 60 international youth and adults.
John has served as an archery instructor through Ohio 4-H Shooting Sports and 4-H Sportfishing Instructor. He started as a visiting archery instructor at 4-H Camp Ohio in the 1970’s. But his involvement definitely increased as he now volunteers at the archery range during Farm Science Review. John has volunteered at the Ohio State Fair as a shooting sports judge, as a nationally trained instructor of shooting sports instructors during state training weekends and at state youth shooting sports camp. He has served on the Knox County 4-H Planning Committee where he always had the best interests of the 4-H youth in mind. John willingly attends weekend trainings to be able to teach archery, shotgun and Hunting & Wildlife Studies according to the Ohio 4-H program guidelines.
2011 Hall of Fame
Bonnie lives the 4-H pledge. She is a walking, talking advertisement for the Ohio 4-H program. Bonnie has served as an advisor in Lorain County for over 40 years. In 2009, her 4-H club celebrated their 90th anniversary. Bonnie is practical and logical with a positive attitude and devotion to the development of youth. A mainstay to the community and treasured by so many, Bonnie is creative, energetic, enthusiastic and hard working. She surrounds herself with enthusiastic, energetic, hard working individuals like. That’s what makes her such a great leader within the Ohio 4-H program. She and her husband are annual sponsors of numerous 4-H trophies, medals and other awards for the Lorain County Junior Fair. In addition, she supports the Lorain County 4-H Endowment.
Debi has been an advisor for the Portage County Junior Fair Board for 35 years. Debi is always willing to help, not just with 4-H but with questions that may arise during fair time. Through her active and engaged example on a wide array of community boards and organizations, Debi has impacted the lives of 4-H youth outside the junior fair and 4-H program as an instructor for Agriculture in the Classroom, coordinator of Safety Town, Farm City Tour and Sunday school instructor. She has always placed a special emphasis on the 4-H program encouraging youth of all ages to attend the Ohio State Fair as well as compete at nationally recognized livestock shows, complete trips and opportunities. She has been a speaker at HOBY seminar at Kent State University on the Importance of Youth Volunteering; and has driven 4-H members to quality assurance training. In 2009, she was inducted to the Portage County 4-H Hall of Fame and also received the County Farm Bureau Distinguished Service Award and Portage County 4-H Alumni Award.
Dick has had a positive influence on the lives of thousands of Ohio youth, volunteers, Extension professionals, county commissioners and legislators throughout Ohio. A man with a vision, Dick has a knack of seeing the big picture and the ability to communicate with clientele at all levels. He continues to participate in a variety of programs and has encouraged generations to build strong character through involvement in 4-H and Extension. For 30 years, as Wood County 4-H Agent, NW District 4-H Specialist, NW District Supervisor and his current role as 4-H donor and supporter, Dick has lived a life of unselfish service to others and it has had a profound impact on the lives of many. He continues to be a vocal advocate for 4-H and Extension. He continually spreads the word to everyone he meets, expounding on the importance of having 4-H for our youth and Extension in our communities. Today, you will still find him teaching volunteers, judging youth at county fairs, and leading numerous programs throughout his community.
During Evelyn’s 51 year career as a 4-H volunteer, she has served in leadership roles with county, area/district and state 4-H advisory committees, helping to recommend direction and policies for the Ohio 4-H program. For the past 7 years, she has volunteered with Montgomery County 4-H during county 4-H judging and state fair preparation. Evelyn was responsible for organizing the Darke County 4-H Food and Fashion Board in 1982 and served as their advisor for four years. She introduced 4-H teens to modeling, make-up, accessorizing and got them involved with local stores in fashion shows. Because of the success of her 4-H members at the Ohio State Fair Fashion Revue, other 4-H members have set new and higher goals in their 4-H sewing project work. Her compassion and love for 4-H members are apparent in all that she has done
2010 Hall of Fame
Bill Clark is an outstanding and committed husband, father, 4-H advisor, and member of his community. Bill’s contributions to the 4-H program, both locally and across Ohio throughout the past 23 years, have made a significant difference in the lives of countless members and volunteers. He provides leadership to Shelby County’s Scissors to Sheep 4-H Club, a club known for its high retention of teen members and its active commitment to community service. Bill is an active member of the Shelby County Agricultural Society Board of Directors, was recently elected to the Hardin-Houston Board of Education, serves on the OSU Extension State Advisory Committee, and the Ohio 4-H Foundation. He is an outstanding role model for youth in the community and throughout Ohio.
Norma Pitts is a major 4-H supporter and advocate who has worked tirelessly throughout her life to strengthen and expand the program and to make it more meaningful for youth and adults throughout the state. Her recent work helped to make the Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center a reality and to increase funds for the Ohio 4-H Foundation Endowment Fund. Norma positively impacts youth and adults throughout Ohio. Her support of the state 4-H Clothing program and the tremendous mentorship and role modeling she provides for staff, volunteers, and members alike have motivated many others to be involved in and support 4-H. Norma is and has always been an enthusiastic, hard-working leader, and supporter of the Ohio 4-H program.
Doris Roby has assisted the 4-H program for 38 years. She embodies the caring, commitment, and dedication evident in 4-H volunteers throughout Ohio. She has extended her support, both financially and personally, to the 4-H program throughout the State of Ohio and across the country. She has served as a 4-H Committee Member, 4-H Clothing Key Leader, 4-H Master Clothing Educator and on various sub-committees on the local and state level. She has the distinction of being one of the original donors who helped establish the Madison County 4-H Endowment Fund. Doris is a true leader, mentor, teacher and good friend.