Maria Crandell leads a group of dedicated 4-H volunteers and works to shape, educate, lead, and encourage young people to become successful citizens. She joined Illinois Extension in 2017 as the 4-H Program Coordinator in Edgar County, where she began her 4-H career.
Crandell is a 12-year 4-H completion member where she showed livestock, winning grand champion steer 11 out of 12 years exhibiting at the fair. She is a fourth-generation rancher with an animal science degree from Lake Land Community College and a bachelor's degree in ag business from Purdue University. She also holds a master's degree in education and youth leadership from the University of Illinois.
She enjoys an active life away from Extension, judging multispecies livestock shows regionally and nationally. She also assists families with their livestock endeavors and works with her family's show cattle herd, which has an impressive record of awards.