2017 Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council members announced

Thirteen Michigan youth take on important leadership role as members of the 2017 Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council.

2017 State Youth Leadership Council members pause for a group photo at their first official meeting at Kettunen Center in Tustin, Michigan.

2017 State Youth Leadership Council members pause for a group photo at their first official meeting at Kettunen Center in Tustin, Michigan.

Michigan 4-H Youth Development believes youth programs are the strongest when youth join the decision-making table as participants in program planning, rather than as recipients in program offerings. Michigan 4-H has created a place for youth leadership and voice at the state level through the creation of the State Youth Leadership Council. January 2017 marks the council’s fourth year of existence and 13 members were welcomed to the prestigious council this month.

Established in 2015, State Youth Leadership Council strives to create a mechanism for youth voice in 4-H programming and in conversations with stakeholders and program donors. In 2016, State Youth Leadership Council members talked about their 4-H experiences at a tailgate hosted at the home of the President of Michigan State University, spoke with donors and award winners attending the Michigan 4-H Foundation gala, coordinated service projects around the state, and served as youth instructors at statewide 4-H leadership events.

The 2017 group of State Youth Leadership Council members join 14 2016 State Youth Leadership Council members returning for their second term. The first cohort of youth that have completed their two-year term reflected on their experience, with one member stating, “I will carry with me a strong value of other people’s opinions and the ability to combine ideas.”

Another member said, “I feel more confident in my leadership abilities, I have learned how to lead discussion and work with other leaders.”

The new 2017 State Youth Leadership Council members start the first of their two-year term in January and include:

  • Kayla Aboukarroum, Flushing, Lapeer County 4-H
  • Kaitlyn Colyer, Coldwater, Branch County 4-H
  • Lauryn Finkel, Grand Rapids, Montcalm County 4-H
  • Samuel Lawrence, Battle Creek, Calhoun County 4-H
  • Osten Eschedor, Hudson, Lenawee County 4-H
  • Nathan Thorn, Augusta, Kalamazoo County 4-H
  • Savannah Taylor, Leonidas, Branch County 4-H
  • Katrina Lomas, Monroe, Monroe County 4-H
  • Lashawnta Bushell, Detroit, Wayne County 4-H
  • Claudia Paddy, South Rockwood, Monroe County 4-H
  • Robert Clements, Byron, Shiawassee County 4-H
  • Paige Sweet, Canton, Monroe County 4-H
  • Elizabeth Marie Stockwell, Dowagiac, Cass County 4-H

State Youth Leadership Council members plan to attend 4-H events around the state in order to broaden their understanding of breadth and variety of Michigan 4-H programs happening locally. To request a State Youth Leadership Council member at an upcoming event, please contact Jackie Martin at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Applications for the 2018 Michigan 4-H State Youth Leadership Council will be available this fall on the State Youth Leadership Council website.

To learn about the positive impact of Michigan State University Extension’s 4-H youth leadership, civic engagement, citizenship and global/cultural programs, read our 2015 Impact Report: “Developing Civically Engaged Leaders.” Additional impact reports, highlighting even more ways Michigan 4-H positively impacted individuals and communities in 2015, can be downloaded from the Michigan 4-H website.

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