Teen Leadership Conference-Edwards Co. - U of I Extension

News Release

Teen Leadership Conference-Edwards Co.

This article was originally published on February 1, 2018 and expired on March 1, 2018. It is provided here for archival purposes and may contain dated information.

Youth challenged to design life blueprint

Inspiration from the writings of Martin Luther King, Jr. guided Illinois 4-H members at the Teen Leadership Conference held January 13-14 at the Decatur Conference Center. Nearly 100 teens across Illinois attended the conference, including Cheyenne Summerfield of Edwards County, and improved their community advocacy, college readiness, communication, and personal development skills.

“In 4-H, we know that leadership is not about a title or a designation,” said Lisa Diaz, University of Illinois Extension assistant dean and 4-H director. “It’s about impact, influence, and inspiration.”

Diaz shared the words of King’s speech, Life’s Blueprint: “Number one in your life’s blueprint should be a deep belief in your own dignity, your worth, and your own ‘somebodiness.’”

Brittney Robbins, founder and CEO of The Gray Matter Experience which provides entrepreneurial tools and resources to black high school students in Chicago, said that what youth post online builds their personal brand. “Your digital content should directly reflect where you stand on issues.”

Susie Risser, freelance communication specialist from Sangamon County, challenged youth to choose words and actions carefully when speaking in public. “A lie told often enough will become the truth to the audience,” Risser said.

Amie Case, Lee County 4-H member, said 4-H provides leadership opportunities which push her out of comfort zone to build skills.

“Through 4-H, I’m able to meet and help others,” said Te-Quandrius Carr of Sangamon County, “to better myself and my future.”

Five 4-H teens planned the conference. They were Kaleb Hemrich of Noble, Kaylee Leach of East Peoria, Maddi Jo Maxwell of Macedonia, Russell Moore III of Springfield, and Kaley Rouse of Toulon.

Funding was provided by the Illinois 4-H Foundation.


About 4-H: Illinois 4-H empowers and prepares Illinois youth for success. University of Illinois Extension provides 4-H programs in every county in Illinois. Illinois 4-H impacts the lives of 200,000 youth each year through sustained learning clubs and groups and short-term programming.

For Further Information Contact:

Source: Debra Stocker, Extension 4-H Youth Development Specialist, 217-333-0910

News Writer: Judy Mae Bingman, Extension Media Communications Specialist, 217-300-2113

Source: Judy Mae Bingman, Media Communications Specialist, 4-H, jmbingma@illinois.edu

Pull date: March 1, 2018