Posted on August 22, 2022 at 11:08 AM by Cade Cameron
When Paul Vaassen talks about 4-H, he calls the national program a "character builder" for young people. "I have seen, not only in Dubuque County but at the state fair, youngsters involved in projects that begin at the start of the year, and are displayed at both the county and state levels. It develops a lot of character and well-being. It gives them the motivation to see these projects through, some of which take a lot of time and effort."
Vaassen, who operated a registered Angus beef cattle farm south of Dubuque, has been involved in many aspects of the 4-H and Iowa State University Extension programs. He served as a leader of the Table Mound Junior Ranchers 4-H Club for more than 15 years during the time his three sons were members.
While serving as 4-H beef projects leader, he and his son conducted yearly fitting and grooming demonstrations to assist young 4-H members in the proper care and preparation of projects for showing at the county fair. "It certainly will be an honor to be recognized," Vaassen said, pointing out his involvement has been a family affair. His wife, Mary Ann, was also a 4-H leader.
Vaassen also noted that his granddaughters showed livestock in Michigan and junior shows throughout the country. Vaassen also served for years on the Dubuque County Extension Council, including the Chair position. For many years, Paul served as the liaison for the 4-H program at the Iowa State Fair and the Iowa State Fair Board.
Vaasen was a 4-H leader, a county extension council member, a state extension advisory council member, and a fair industry official. Paul has been associated with 4-H for more than 40 years.