Posted on April 21, 2011 at 1:46 PM by Global Reach
Vernelle Malven joined 4-H in January, 1955 as a fifth grader in Butler County and remained a member for eight years. Her mother, Nelda (Myrick) Hassman, was instrumental in encouraging her to join 4-H as she had been a member in Dickinson County during her youth in the early 1930’s. 4-H continued to be a family tradition as Vernelle and her husband, George, raised three boys (Tony, Tim, Trent) and introduced each of them to 4-H in Fayette County. During that time Vernelle adapted to boys 4-H and later became a leader of the Harlan Livestock 4-H Club. Dairy was a project area the boys showed an interest in and Vernelle could be seen working side by side learning right along with them. As the 4-H tradition continues, Vernelle is proud to currently have three grandsons involved in the 4-H program – two in Howard County and one in Chickasaw County.
Vernelle says that 4-H has influenced her life in many ways. She learned many lifelong skills from the project areas she took great interest in – including communication, leadership, and citizenship skills. 4-H also taught Vernelle responsibility, how to conduct business meetings, the importance of teamwork, community service, setting goals, being a self-starter, perseverance, and how to challenge herself. As a 4-H member, the joy she found in working with younger members definitely impacted her career choice in becoming an elementary school teacher.
Vernelle also served as a member of the Fayette County Extension Council and Fayette County 4-H & Youth committee. 4-H continues to be a part of Vernelle’s life as she continues to serve as a volunteer superintendent on non-livestock judging day where she attaches the ribbons to each exhibit that is judged. She started this job in 1996 and thoroughly enjoys being an “encourager” and seeing the progress the 4-H’ers have made in one year’s time. Vernelle says, “It’s a busy, but very rewarding day! 4-H has many valuable and gratifying learning experiences.”