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Author Archives: Joyce

Congratulations on your Retirement, Naomi!

Congratulations to Naomi on her retirement and thank you for your service as the 4-H House Mom! Let’s shower her with cards to congratulate her and show our appreciation for all that she has done for us!

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2020 Distinguished Alumni Award

It’s that time again to nominate a sister for the Distinguished Alumni Award. Which 4-H House sister comes to mind when you think about service to the house, the University, her profession, and her community? Please consider nominating her for the Distinguished Alumni Award. The guidelines and application are posted below. This year’s application is due to the Alumni Board by August 1, 2020. Applications can be emailed to [email protected] or mailed to 4-H House, PO Box 522, St. Joseph, IL 61783 – Attn: Distinguished Alumni Award.
4-H House Distinguished Alumni Award Winners

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Meet Your Alum Board – Tammy Oertel

Hello!  I’m Tammy (Twenhafel) Oertel, 1994 U of I graduate with a BS in Speech and Hearing Science and member of the 4-H House pledge class of ’95.   It’s an honor and a privilege to serve on the Alum Board.  I appreciate everything that 4-H House afforded me during my time on campus, and now that my children are themselves entering the college years, giving back to my home-away-from-home in this capacity is an exciting and welcomed prospect.
I grew up in southern Illinois (shout out to the CC, aka Clinton County) on a dairy and grain farm.  I attended Kaskaskia Jr. College for one year, then transferred as a sophomore.  Though my career path was not in agriculture, and I loved the broad experiences and diversity I experienced at U of I, my heart was never far from my roots.  This made 4-H House the perfect place for me to [ ]

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Meet Your Alum Board – Gay Greenwood Kirkton

Hello! My name is Gay Greenwood Kirkton, and I was a member of the pledge class of the fall of 1975 and a graduate of the May class of 1979.  I majored in speech and English education and spent most of my career teaching at Dekalb High School in Auburn, Indiana, north of Fort Wayne. I attended the 85th anniversary weekend this past summer and was so impressed with all that the alumni board has accomplished! I only hope I can keep up with them as I begin my tenure!
I grew up  in Chatham, Illinois, and I always hoped to attend the U of I because my father graduated from there. I heard many stories of his experiences in his classes and living at Illi- Dell. We spent a few weekends every year visiting with his Illi- Dell buddy Bill Gossett and his wife Nancy, who lived at 4-H House. [ ]

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Meet Your Alum Board- Carol Tillman

Hello, my name is Carol Tillman and I lived in 4-H House all 4 years (Fall 1980 – 1984). I served as Secretary and other house offices and committees while in the House. I have been privileged to serve on 4-H House Alum Board and work with the maintenance of the House and the 801 property. As Property Manager, I coordinate with the House Manager on larger projects that are outside of the manager’s schedule. Coordinating with the Parents’ Associations on projects has also been beneficial for the House. I also serve with a great group of Alums, parents and current House girls on the Property Committee.  This group investigates projects, researches different approaches and makes recommendations to the Alum Board, then rolls up their sleeves to help complete the projects.
Currently for work, I design landscapes and do some installations. I grew up in Carlinville in Macoupin County on a [ ]

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Meet Your Alum Board-Deb Duquaine


Hi! I’m Deb (Ruckman) Duquaine, and I lived in the House from 1987-1991.  I am excited about serving on the Alumni Board and reconnecting with alumni and meeting current 4H House women. After my older sister Karen (Ruckman) Rewerts showed me what the House was about, I wanted to live there.  It was even better when I got my 4H House big sis, Pam (Nash) Clodfelter. I lived in 4H House all four years, except for the semester I traveled to Perth, Australia with Joy (Parr) Drach for a study abroad semester. After graduating in ’91 with a Biology degree, I went on to Veterinary School in C-U and graduated in ’95. I went to work in my hometown of Flora at a mixed animal practice.  I married a Chicago boy, Paul, and brought him down to farm country.  Together we homeschooled our children and eventually sent them to Flora [ ]

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2019 Distinguished Alum

Since 2009 the 4-H House Alumni Association has presented the 4-H House Distinguished Alumni Award to one of our outstanding alumni to recognize contributions she has made to her community, her profession, her sorority and /or her university. Winners of this award are an example and a source of pride for all members of the 4-H House sisterhood.
The 2019 4-H House Distinguished Alumni Award is Holly Spangler.
Holly Spangler has covered Illinois agriculture for more than 20 years, beginning her career with Prairie Farmer before graduating from the University of Illinois with a degree in agricultural communications.  As editor of Prairie Farmer magazine, she brings meaningful production agriculture experience to the magazine’s coverage, including a variety of agronomic, financial and issue-oriented stories. She currently serves as editor of Prairie Farmer magazine, and Executive Editor for Farm Progress, managing editorial staff at seven magazines throughout the [ ]

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85th Reunion Program

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85th Reunion Book

Click on the link below to view the PDF of the book from the 85th Reunion
85th Book

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Meet our Newest Alums – Congratulations to the Class of 2019!

Bobbi Toepper will be working for Morton Buildings as a Project Engineer Associate in Morton, IL.

Christy Allen will be working as an Associate Territory Manager for Corteva Agriscience in Kansas City covering Kansas and Missouri.
Hannah Miller will be Teaching 5th grade at Prairie Central Upper Elementary in Forrest, IL.
Harley Carlson will be teaching Agriculture at Central Community High School in Breese, IL.
Jalyne Herren will be pursuing her Master’s degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with a concentration in Child Life at Illinois State University.
Jillian Monier will be working in Redwood Falls, MN as a Production Associate for Bayer CropScience
Kara Brokamp will be working for BSNF Railway as a track engineer.
Lauren Southwood will working in an underfunded school planning after school program, mentoring etc. in Denver Colorado for a year before heading to Law School.
Katie Zelechowski will be an Associate at Illinois Farm Bureau in Bloomington, IL.
Meghan Clodfelter will [ ]

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