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4-H youth leader takes the stage as part of Agriculture Legislative Day

Ross Vancil at the microphone.

Springfield, Ill. –  Members of the Youth Leadership Team represented Illinois 4-H at the Agriculture Legislative Day held in Springfield Mar. 13.

Agriculture Legislative Day allows farm and agricultural commodity organizations and others with an agricultural interest to meet with both sponsoring organizations as well as their respective state senators and representatives.

Youth Leadership Team members Ross Vancil of Henderson County, Alex Paul of Wayne County, Amanda Niemann of Montgomery County, Emma Hughes of Montgomery County, and Janella Neary of Monroe County represented Illinois 4-H this year.

Youth Leadership Team Chair Ross Vancil contributed opening remarks as part of the program.

"4-H empowers generations of leaders and change makers who will continue to make a positive difference in our communities and beyond." Ross shared as a part of his speech.

The Illinois State 4-H Youth Leadership Team involves 4-H members and recent 4-H alumni ages 16-21 who coordinate and assist with various area and statewide 4-H activities and provides an important youth voice and presence at events such as this. Team members are involved in planning and implementing the Illinois 4-H Jr. Leadership Conference; assisting behind the scenes with events such as Illini Summer Academies and Illinois State Fair; serving as the training team for the Speaking for Illinois 4-H program; and serving on various statewide 4-H committees and boards (i.e. Illinois 4-H Foundation Board of Directors, Illinois Farm Bureau Youth Education Committee), among other duties such as representing 4-H at important statewide and national events.

Agriculture Legislative Day is an annual event held each spring.

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. 

Source: Katie Duitsman, 4-H 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. Illinois Extension is part of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences.