Iowa 4-H Foundation

Posted on April 6, 2011 at 10:53 AM by Global Reach

Guy NobleGuy Noble - National Committee on Boys' and Girls' Club Work

4-H Efforts: Started the first private financial partnerships with early 4-H Clubs. Organized the National Committee on Boys' and Girls' Club Work. Their efforts to give financial support to club youth to attend the Chicago International Live Stock Exposition developed into the National 4-H Congress, which continued for decades to meet in Chicago. Promoted federal legislation to increase funding for Extension and 4-H.

Guy Noble was an early corporate supporter to 4-H. An employee of Armour Packing Company, he proposed to the company that they support trips for state club winners to the 1919 Chicago International Live Stock Exposition. He arranged tours and entertainmnet for their guests. After several of these successful annual tours, it became clear that private businesses had a role in supporting club work. In 1921, Noble took a leave of absence from Armour to organize the National Committee on Boys' and Girls' Club Work, which had its first meeting in Chicago.

The first few years the committee struggled but gained financial support from the Chicago Board of Trade and Montgomery Ward built momentum. In 1923 it was suggested that the annual tour in Chicago be designated as a "club congress." That year 1,600 youth attended, which overwhelmed the event and led to a limit of not more than 50 per state. National 4-H Congress continues to this day, having convened in Chicago for many years. Noble retired from the Committee in 1958. The Committee merged with the National 4-H Foundation to form National 4-H Council.

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