Posted on August 28, 2017 at 8:32 AM by Emily Saveraid
Dr. Gene Hoy grew up on a family farm in Mahaska County in a town called Bussey, Iowa. Dr. Hoy started his 4-H career in 1955 as part of the Jefferson Go-Getter’s 4-H Club. His first 4-H project, remembering it as if it were yesterday, was a Hereford heifer. Unfortunately, the animal became ill prior to the county fair, and a veterinarian was called to his farm to take a look at this very special heifer. As a result, Dr. Hoy was not terribly impressed with the vet’s advice and treatment, and from that moment on, made a decision to attend veterinary school to help animals in need.
Dr. Hoy graduated from Twin Cedars High School in 1963 and went on to attend Iowa State University. Dr. Hoy graduated from Iowa State Veterinary School in 1969. After graduation, Dr. Hoy and his wife, Linda, moved to Richland, Iowa where he set up his first veterinary practice. In 1977, he built a new veterinary office that had inpatient large animal facilities that included a tilt table for cattle. This was something new for that time and allowed him to trim hooves on cattle. One thing Dr. Hoy truly enjoyed was trimming hooves on 4-H projects. He understood it was important for the 4-H youth to be present for this and made time on weekends, as well as evenings, for the kids to bring in their animals. He also performed cosmetic dehorning on cattle for
4-H and show cattle. Dr. Hoy saw this as a great learning opportunity. Dr. Hoy retired from his veterinary practice in 2012.
Volunteering was, and still is, something Dr. Hoy enjoys. He has been involved over the years performing veterinary inspections for several county fairs. Dr. Hoy has served on several boards and continues to serve in multiple leadership roles. Currently, Dr. Hoy is part of the Jefferson County 4-H Youth Committee. Moreover, he has been actively involved with the Animal Learning Center at the Iowa State Fair since 2009. Dr. Hoy guides and teaches those who have an active interest in animal welfare and science.
Dr. Hoy has been married for 50 years and has four children, all former 4-H members. Reflecting back, he sees how 4-H has made a true difference in not only his children’s lives, but rather his family as a whole. Dr. Hoy states, “4-H is a family event to work on projects together. The time spent together was worth every minute, and no one can take that away.”