National 4-H head visits Louisiana

Bruce Schultz  |  11/18/2008 2:54:48 AM

Donald Floyd, president of the National 4-H Council, meets with Victoria LeBlanc of Abbeville, a member of the National 4-H Council Board of Trustees. (Photo by Bruce Schultz. Right click on photo for downloadable image.)

News Release Distributed 11/17/08

ABBEVILLE – Donald T. Floyd Jr., president and CEO of the National 4-H Council, the private-sector, nonprofit partner of America's largest youth organization, visited Louisiana Nov. 13-14.

The National 4‑H Council represents the interests of more than 6.5 million young people who participate in 4-H in every county or parish in the United States and who are learning leadership, citizenship and life skills. 4-H also has partners in more than 80 countries.

4-H is the youth development and outreach program of the nation’s land-grant universities and is operated in Louisiana by the LSU AgCenter. It involves young people in educational projects, camps, activities, trips and school enrichment programs that foster development of life skills in science, engineering and technology, citizenship, healthy living and much more.

Floyd attended a Vermilion Parish 4-H junior leader meeting and met with Victoria LeBlanc of Abbeville, who recently was elected to the National 4-H Council Board of Trustees.

“He’s just coming to touch bases with me,” LeBlanc said. “He makes a point to do this as president.”

LeBlanc, a junior at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, said she remains active in 4-H to help local clubs.

Floyd said a 4-H Web site similar to Facebook recently came online.

“It will allow young people all over the 4-H world to communicate with each other,” he said.

The Web site at www.4-h.org will allow 4-H members to share ideas and show the world their accomplishments, he said.

Floyd said he also came to Louisiana to visit with Shannan and Hilton Waits, LSU AgCenter 4-H agents in Vermilion Parish.

“If I had to make a list of my favorite 4-H agents, they would be right there at the top of it,” he said.

Floyd said he will travel to Africa soon in the effort to expand 4-H’s already-existing global presence.

Before going to Vermilion Parish, Floyd met with Dr. Paul Coreil, LSU AgCenter vice chancellor and director of the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service. Coreil is the new national chair of the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy, the administrative organization representing all extension service organization across the United States and its territories.

The two discussed Louisiana’s commitment to 4-H youth development and the opportunities for 4-H to expand in science, engineering and technology programming across the nation.

“We also discussed the strong ties between 4-H and the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the success of 4-H youth helping with hurricane recovery in Louisiana after hurricanes Katrina and Rita and, most recently, hurricanes Gustav and Ike,” Coreil said.

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Writer: Bruce Schultz at (337) 788-8821 or bschultz@agcenter.lsu.edu

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