Kettunen Center in Tustin set the scene for this year’s Michigan State University Extension Children and Youth Institute Spring Conference May 8‒10. The weather was sunny and warm and everything was in bloom.
Staff members attended and gave sessions on topics such as being financially accountable, creating public value statements and keeping competitive events educational.
Several staff members received awards at the Michigan Association of Extension 4-H Youth Staff (MAE4-HYS) Recognition Banquet. A reception honoring the award recipients followed the banquet.
In the space we have here, I don’t have room to mention all of the awards but I do want to single out the Distinguished Service Awards.
Dorothy Munn and Sue Stapleton both received the MAE4-HYS Distinguished Service Award. The award is the highest state honor that 4-H staff can obtain through the MAE4-HYS. The award is given to current MAE4-HYS members who have at least 6 years of employment in Extension 4-H Youth Development, including some statewide involvement in coordinating events, programming or both, and who have proven evidence of positive change resulting from their work.
Extension educator Dorothy Munn became MSU Extension 4-H educator in Ogemaw County in 1998. Two years ago, Dorothy became a 4-H supervisor and coach for staff in four counties and took on an assignment with the Academic Success Science Team.
Dorothy administered and directed a four-year, $500,000 Title 5 Juvenile Justice grant, which provided expanded 4-H after-school and summer programming in three communities. With Dorothy’s support, 15 staff members collaborated with numerous entities including schools, municipalities, the health department, libraries and the Department of Human Services.
Throughout her Extension career, Dorothy has been involved in 4-H international programming, serving on the 4-H global education committee, teaching the Polish exchange session at Exploration Days and coordinating a 4-H trip to Poland. To highlight 4-H’s international programs, Dorothy coordinated an evening of culture that drew 70 people.
She has been the 4-H state awards coordinator for the North Region for many years, been on the North Central 4-H camp planning team since 1998 and served in nearly every role including treasurer, secretary and camp director. She has designed and taught a myriad of trainings for teens including instruction for camp counselors, teen leaders and club officers.
4-H program coordinator Sue Stapleton began her career in 4-H in 1986. Sue turned the 4-H Discovery Day at Springfield Oaks Activity Center into an expo that highlights many of the 4-H clubs in Oakland County. Thousands of youth have attended this event.
She served as Oakland County’s CCA at 4-H Exploration Days. She is one of the architects of Oakland County’s 4-H Horse Camp, attended by 60 to 75 youth annually.
Sue has become an expert in starting every kind of animal 4-H club. She was instrumental in getting a 4-H club involved in educating citizens on the benefits of raising chickens, perhaps leading to the city of Ferndale allowing chickens to be raised in city limits.
For many years, she trained each 4-H volunteer personally. Sue has covered almost every possible topic in her trainings. She has given many clinics on how to write county and state awards, and how to train officers as well.
Congratulations to both of you!