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University of Illinois Extension serving Carroll, Lee and Whiteside Counties

Whiteside County
12923 Lawrence Road
Sterling, IL 61081
Phone: 815-632-3611
FAX: 815-716-8922

Carroll County
807D S Clay St
Mt. Carroll, IL 61053
Phone: 815-244-9444
FAX: 815-244-3708

Lee County
280 W Wasson Rd
Amboy, IL 61310
Phone: 815-857-3525
FAX: 815-857-3527

News Release

Accent photo

State’s highest award presented to 4-H members

Twenty 4-H members from across the state were honored for their lifetime 4-H achievements. The Illinois State 4-H Award recognizes exemplary work in five major areas, including communications, community service, leadership, personal growth and project mastery. The winners were recognized during a ceremony held Oct. 7 in Champaign.


Winners received either a trip to National 4-H Congress, $1,000 toward the cost of another national 4-H event, or a $1,000 college scholarship as their prize. The award is supported through gifts to the Illinois 4-H Foundation by donors, including the Illinois Farm Bureau, Renita Anderson, Jennifer Cowsert, Carrie Francis, Susan Moore, Donna Mueller, Keith Parr, Phyllis Ruwe, Ryan Ruwe, Elizabeth Schnitzler, Jean Shinn, Kenneth Smith, and Gerald Theile.


In the area of Communications, the winners were Nathan Hill of Effingham County and Anne Preston of Macon County. In the area of Community Service, the winners were Abbey Bowrey of Macon County, Nicholas Hembrough of Lee County, Katie Lynn of Logan County, Abigail Mongan of Ogle County, Katie Lynn of Logan County, and Abigail Mongan of Ogle County.


In the area of Leadership, the winners were David Bruns of Christian County, Brock Irwin of Boone County, Rachel Miller of Franklin, Beth Warden of Cass County, and Beth Warden of Cass County.


Winners in the Personal Growth area were Andrew Cunningham of Macon County, Rhett Geisz of JoDaviess County, Molly Schempp of Logan County, Brittney Muschetto of Will County, Molly Schempp of Logan County, and Jordan Witte of McLean County.


In the area of Project Mastery, winners were Miriam Hoffman of LaSalle County, Kara Froidcoeur of McLean County, Miriam Hoffman of LaSalle County, Reed Jostes of DeWitt County, Suzanne Russo of Winnebago County, and Addison Wetzel of Lee County.

Illinois STATE 4-H AWARD: 4-H members were honored for their lifetime 4-H achievements during a ceremony held Oct. 7 in Champaign. Pictured were (front, left to right) Nathan Hill, Brock Irwin, Andrew Cunningham, David Bruns, and Nicholas Hembrough; and (back) Beth Warden, Brittney Muschetto, Rachel Miller, Miriam Hoffman, Abigail Mongan, Molly Schempp, and Katie Lynn. 

About  our local winners:

Nicholas Hembrough:

4-H and community service are a huge part of Nicholas’ family heritage. Nicholas has worked to carry on the family tradition by serving food at a soup kitchen, working at volunteer recognition banquets, and shopping for and packing holiday gifts into shoeboxes to send to youth around the world. He helped coordinate a county-wide meal packaging event for Illini Fighting Hunger by setting up, recruiting volunteers, packing, sorting and distributing the meals. The group packed over 11,000 meals in the one day. The first year was so successful, they tried a second year and packed over 12,000 meals that year. He plans to continue his lifestyle of community service and help people wherever and whenever he can.


Addison Wetzel:

Addison participates in several different 4-H projects and activities, but the sheep project is her definite love. She began with four ewes and now has a flock of 14 breeding ewes. She purchases, feeds, and cares for numerous feeder lambs over the course of a year. While showing lambs is a big part of her project, Addison is also a livestock advocate, teaching county fifth grade students each year and presenting at various Ag Expos. She mentors younger 4-H’ers in the sheep project and provides animals for judging contests and petting zoos. She is active in various county, regional and state activities such as livestock judging, meats judging, skill-a-thons, and more. She is a county 4-H Ambassador and serves in a variety of leadership positions both within 4-H and other organizations. 

Local Contact: Martha Ebbesmeyer, ,