2007 Polk County - Mary Lou Lathrum

Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame Inductees

2007 Polk County - Mary Lou Lathrum


Mary Lou LathrumMary Lou was a Polk County 4-H’er in the 1940s and 1950s.  She was elected County Secretary in 1953.  She sang in the Polk County 4-H Chorus.  She attended State 4-H Camp, State Girls Convention (now Conference), and did demonstrations at the Iowa State Fair and Waterloo Dairy Cattle Conference.  

As a parent, Mary Lou enrolled two sons into Bondurant Go-Getters and served as an assistant leader of the club.

Mary Lou has been an achievement show judge, record book evaluator, herdsmanship judge, superintendent of the Visual Arts Department and superintendent of the Queen Competition.  

She served 18 years on the Polk County Fair Board.  She was the Co-Superintendent of the 4-H Exhibit Building.

Mary Lou’s proudest accomplishment was her leadership in revamping the county fair queen competition.  The queens were crowned in a casual ceremony in the livestock barn and were never entered to go on to the State Fair.  It was Mary Lou’s vision to dress-up the event and give it a public coronation ceremony on stage in the 4-H Exhibit Building and send the winner onto the State Fair Queen Contest.  In Mary Lou’s first year coordinating the improved competition, the Polk County Fair Queen went on to WIN the Iowa State Fair Queen Competition!  (1984)

She still serves as a 4-H volunteer to this day for her grandson’s Warren County club.  She also assists with record book evaluation.

04/07/2011 12:22 PM |Add a comment
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