Since 1913, 4-H leaders have helped shape Manitoba’s youth into strong citizens of the province, the nation and the world. These leaders have remained innovative in developing programs that nurture citizenship, leadership, responsibility and independence in youth. Through their volunteer efforts these leaders have taught young future leaders the importance of hard work, setting and achieving personal goals, and instilling an obligation of service to community and others.

By following the 4-H motto of “Learn to Do by Doing”, these leaders have shared their knowledge and skills and mentored youth in the development of life skills that have enabled them to achieve success in agriculture, business, home and community. The total contribution of 4-H members to society throughout their entire lives is immeasurable, and many members directly attribute their success in part to the dedication and commitment of their 4-H leaders.

Today, as in the past, 4-H leaders come from a diversity of backgrounds and professions.

Whether a farmer, teacher, homemaker, professional or tradesperson, each of these leaders has exhibited their commitment through their volunteer efforts to teach and mentor youth in the development of skills and knowledge they will use at home, in their communities, in business and throughout their lives.

These individuals are not only the leaders within 4-H but are very often key leaders in other community organizations and initiatives. The agriculture industry, agricultural organizations and rural communities are stronger and more vibrant because of the contributions of 4-H leaders and members.

Many have also taken their leadership skills developed as 4-H leaders and members and transferred them to their professional lives. 4-H leaders and members have assumed leadership positions regionally, provincially and nationally in both rural and urban centres within and outside of agriculture and often credit their 4-H experiences as the foundation of their success.

4-H leaders share a great sense of pride and humility in the role they have played in the lives of these youth and young adults. The reward in nurturing these young individuals, from their early beginnings in the 4-H program to becoming the next generation of society’s leaders, is witnessed in every aspect of the 4-H journey. The title of 4-H leader is truly a badge of honour.