National 4-H Conference

Spring 2022
National 4-H Youth Conference Center
Chevy Chase, Maryland

The National 4-H Conference delegates participate in developing recommendations for the 4-H Youth Development Program. The National 4-H Headquarters then shares the recommendations with the Secretary of Agriculture, National Extension Program Leaders, and others who determine 4-H programs. This event brings together youth, volunteer leaders, and state and county Extension staff from across the United States, the U.S. Territories, and the Canadian Provinces.

The University of Missouri 4-H sends three delegates and a chaperone to the National 4-H Conference each year. Because few Missouri 4-H members are chosen to experience this event, it is a great honor to be one of the delegates.

A thank you to the Turner family

When 4-H history was being made, Nellie Turner and her family were there. In 1927, Nellie attended the first National 4-H Conference—then called 4-H Club Camps—and took part in adopting the 4-H pledge and motto. Her son, Ed Turner, presided over the dedication ceremony of the National 4-H Center near Washington, D.C. in 1959. Ed's sister, Joan Hickman, was present at the dedication of the national center's courtyard statue.

For many years, the Turner family has helped three Missouri delegates attend the National 4-H Conference, with an annual gift of $3,000 for expenses. To assure perpetual support for a Missouri delegation, the Turner family has made a gift commitment of a $60,000 endowment

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      • Stimulate thought around current priorities/needs and move youth delegates to action in their local communities;
      • Reinforce the rich history of 4-H and its valuable tie to Cooperative Extension and the land-grant system;
      • Engage delegates with leaders from USDA, CSREES, the land-grant university system, as well as their local state and natinoal partners;
      • Enlighten delegates to the valuable work and research coming out of land-grant universities;
      • Provide an opportunity for delegates to engage as citizens by meeting with their congressional representatives to discuss issues affecting their communities;
      • Enhance valuable 21st century leadership skills such as adaptability, team-building, and communications;
      • Gather feedback from our most important stakeholders – youth!
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      1. 4-H members who are between 14 and 18 years old on Dec. 31 of that program year are eligible to apply. For example, to apply in 2022, a 4-H member would need to be between 14 and 18 on Dec. 31, 2021.
      2. Applicants will submit the following:
        1. The application form
        2. Two letters of recommendation
        3. A video essay response
      3. Applications will be reviewed by a panel of judges representing the Missouri 4-H Foundation, Turner Family and Missouri 4-H.
      4. Delegates will be announced at or around State 4-H Congress 2021.
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      Read about this year’s delegates