Skip to main content

4-H youth honored for career achievements, leadership

Bulbs that didn't work and a bulb that does shining on them

URBANA, Ill. – 4-H youth across the state have been honored for their career achievements in the 4-H program.

The State 4-H Experience Award offers recognition for members who took part in activities and events in the categories of Participation, Community Service, Leadership, and Project Mastery. In order to qualify for the award, 4-H members must have expanded their 4-H experience beyond just the county level.

“4-H encourages and provides supports for youth to develop mastery in their chosen subject area, but we also encourage youth to use those skills in leadership roles,” says Lisa Diaz, University of Illinois Extension assistant dean and 4-H director. “These awards recognize youth who have pledged to use their head, heart, hands and health to support their communities and their world”

Youth choose learning pathways and are encouraged to find 4-H experiences to explore at the county, state, and national levels.

“4-H experiences take place at the community level, but there are opportunities to expand youth experiences,” says Diaz. “These youth have pushed themselves to new limits and expanded their worldview in order to qualify for these awards.”

Diamond Level awards recognize youth who completed six or more experiences in one of the three dimensions, with at least four experiences beyond the county level. The Diamond Level awards are sponsored by Dwight Huffstutler, James and Sharon Walker, Wilbur and Marilyn Nelson, and Gary and Cecilia Balke.

Diamond Level Award Winners in Leadership included Carter Joiner of Macoupin County.

Diamond Level Award Winners in Project Learning include Sarah Rossi, Grundy County; Blu Barrow, Hamilton County; Landen Curry, Pulaski-Alexander County; Mikayla Skelton, Pulaski-Alexander County; Bailey Callahan, Rock Island County; and Nicholas Gorbach, Rock Island County.

The Emerald Level award recognizes youth who completed eight or more experiences in one of the three dimensions, with at least four of those experiences beyond the county level and at least two at the state, national, or international level.  The Emerald Level awards are sponsored by Bill and Jane Wyffels, Carrol and Patsy Bolen, Sandra Lignell, and Doug and Edith Block.

Emerald Level Award Winners in Leadership include Lance Woolam, Adams County; Carlson Rozanas, Boone County; Jenna Clemmons, Champaign County; Gauri Venkatraman, DuPage County; Emma Wiseman, Edwards County; Emilee Cox, Hamilton County; Sarah Darnell, Hamilton County; Caitlyn Richards, Hamilton County; Shiloh Willis, Hamilton County; Ava Winternheimer, Hamilton County; Emily Reppy, Kendall County; Sydney Reppy, Kendall County; Libby Larkin, Livingston County; Morgan Crouch, Macon County; Taylor Crouch, Macon County; Anthony Joiner, Macoupin County; Saralynn Joiner, Macoupin County; Janella Neary, Monroe County; Emma Hughes, Montgomery County; Fallon Knodle, Montgomery County; Amanda Niemann, Montgomery County; Kohen Stolte, Montgomery County; Gracie Prose, Ogle County; Jillian Jones, Pope County; Abagayle Britton, Pulaski-Alexander County; Victoria Zwilling, Richland County; Rachel Lands, Saline County; Naomi Dolan, Vermilion County; Alana Dolan, Vermilion County; Katie Aldrich, White County; Katelyn Allen, White County; Avery Edler, Will County; and Vanessa Edler, Will County.

Emerald Level Award Winners in Project Learning include Brooke Glander, Boone County; Alexandra Bruinius, Will County; Justin Irwin, Boone County; Nora Rozanas, Boone County; Willard Rozanas, Boone County; Benjamin Wamsley, Christian County; Sofie Heidrich, Kendall County; Abi Munar, Kendall County; Annie Ralston, Kendall County; Makinzie Gaither, Lawrence County; Braylee Gilmore, Macoupin County; Wyld Gilmore, Macoupin County; Makenna Harding, Macoupin County; Payton Harding, Macoupin County; Reese Heyen, Macoupin County; Hallee Kaburick, Macoupin County; Kayleigh Trimm, Macoupin County; Luke Wolff, Macoupin County; Claire Malinowski, McClean County; Bond Knodle, Montgomery County; Alden Knodle, Montgomery County; Caden Crain, Pulaski-Alexander County; Ashton Dillow, Pulaski-Alexander County; Layla Helman, Pulaski-Alexander County; Ava Ralls, Pulaski-Alexander County; Landon Ralls, Pulaski-Alexander County; Wyatt Ruiz, Pulaski-Alexander County; Michael Skelton, Pulaski-Alexander County; Emma Thurston, Pulaski-Alexander County; Alaina Smith, Randolph County; Chase Smith, Randolph County; Seth Clodfelter, Richland County; Levi Clodfelter, Richland County; Wyatt Arnold, Saline County; Esmi Small, Shelby County; Kaylie Adams, Union County; Kim Adams, Union County; Callysta Borders, Union County; Katryna Borders, Union County; Sabryna Borders, Union County; Trystan Borders, Union County; Averie Dickinson, Union County; Madison Dickinson, Union County; Ceri Ward, Union County; Katelyn Davis, White County; Kenley Davis, White County; Katelyn Garner, White County; Jalynn Phillips, White County; Breyton Sauls, White County; Madison Krum, Whiteside County; Mitchell Hocker, Will County; Julia Muschetto, Will County; and Matt Selucky, Will County.

Emerald Level Award Winners in Community Service include Elaan Bader, Montgomery County; Lilah Bonny, Shelby County; Delaney Nation, Shelby County;
Annsley Healy, White County; Grace McCarty, White County; Johanna Zieren, White County; and Peter Widinsky, Will County.

The Deb Stocker Award honors an exceptional member of the 4-H Youth Leadership Team. Gracie Prose of Ogle County was this year’s recipient.

To learn more about awards and scholarship opportunities in Illinois 4-H, please visit the Awards and Scholarship page.

About Illinois 4-H: Illinois 4-H is the flagship youth development program of University of Illinois Extension and administered through the College of Agriculture, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences. 4-H grows true leaders, youth who are empowered for life today and prepared for a career tomorrow. The hands-on approach in 4-H gives young people guidance, tools, and encouragement, and then puts them in the driver’s seat to make great things happen. Independent research confirms the unparalleled impact of the 4-H experience, demonstrating that young people are four times more likely to contribute to their communities; two times more likely to make healthier choices; two times more likely to be civically active; and two times more likely to participate in STEM programs. 

About Extension:  Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities. 

Source:  Katie Duitsman, 4-H Leadership Youth Development Extension Specialist

Writer:  Carissa Nelson, Media Communications Manager, 4-H State Office,



About Extension

Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.