Posted on August 28, 2017 at 8:36 AM by Emily Saveraid
Growing up in Keokuk County has made it easy for Ron and Janis Collins to be excited to be part of the 4-H program. Ron being a member of the Lively Livestock 4-H Club and Janis a member of the Stick To It 4-H Club, prepared them to serve on the Keokuk County 4-H Council when they were in high school. They both had exhibits advance to the Iowa State Fair. Strong parental leadership was provided with Janis' parents being 4-H leaders and Ron's mother, Zelda, being one of the original fair board members for the Keokuk County Exposition.
As Ron and Janis' family of 5 children joined 4-H, the involvement grew. All five children participated at the county and state level in 4-H and FFA. Even though the children are grown, the family still volunteers during the Expo as it takes many hands to prepare for the events during fair week. Involvement in church, school and the community is a big part of what 4-H teaches along with the need to give of ourselves to help others. This led Ron to become a Keokuk County Expo Fair Board member. Over the years, he organized and assisted in many events the Expo hosted. Most recently, Ron worked with the County Council to implement Family Fun Night during the Expo. Ron provided big bales of hay for 4-H clubs to decorate to promote Expo and constructed picture boards out of plywood for the 4-H clubs to paint ideas for promoting Expo which were used at the fair.
Janis is serving on the Keokuk County Extension Council and is currently an officer. The council's responsibility is to assist the extension staff and enhance participation in youth and adult programs. Janis is a member of the Keokuk County Fair Board, where she is Culinary Superintendent, along with their daughter and granddaughter.
Ron and Janis and their family feel a strong commitment to promote 4-H, volunteer at events at both fairs, their church and school as they continue to support 4-H with the next generation.