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4-H Hall of Fame

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Mary Baca Olguin

Nominated by: Rey Torres - Taos Co.

Inducted in: 2008

Robert & Frances Barley

Nominated by: Steve Barley

Inducted in: 2003

Virginia Barsuaskas

Virginia Barsuaskas of Santa Fe County

Inducted in 2009

Virginia Barsuaskas, known to many as Mrs. B, has been a volunteer for the Cooperative Extension Service, 4-H program, and the Santa Fe County Fair for over 35 years! Improving quality of life through educational outreach efforts for the residents of Santa Fe County has been a priority for Mrs. B. From gardening and food preservation to shooting sports and leadership, Mrs. B. has provided direction and a lot of hard work towards programs such as these for both youth and adults. Having a strong passion for all things “outdoors”, Mrs. B has played an integral part in getting the 4-H shooting sports program in Santa Fe County off the ground. As a Hunter Education instructor she enables hundreds of youth to be safe and successful sportsmen. Mrs. B was also instrumental in the operations of the 4-H Afterschool Program in the mid 1990’s, sponsored a 4-H Club for Girl’s Inc. and developed many animal projects for Cloverbuds. Virginia Barsuaskas has made a positive impact on many Santa Fe County 4-Hers, volunteers, and the overall community in Santa Fe.

Glenn Bartelt

Glenn Bartelt of Dona Ana County

Inducted in: 2007

Glenn Bartelt began his career as a 4-H agent in Wisconsin before coming to New Mexico to serve as the 4-H Program leader in 1978. Since his retirement in 1986, Mr. Bartelt has remained an avid supporter of New Mexico 4-H volunteering his time to serve on committees, assist with contests and solicit donations. Currently, Mr. Bartelt sits on the Board of Trustees for the New Mexico 4-H Foundation raising money to support statewide events and the State 4-H Leadership Team. He is credited with several firsts in New Mexico 4-H. For instance, he developed the first 4-H Adult Leaders’ Forum in the state, but most notably, he was the very first Chris Clover for New Mexico Extension. Thank you for all you do and Congratulations, Mr. Bartelt.

Verneda Bayless

Nominated by: Sandoval County

Inducted in: 2002

Verneda Bayless' love of 4-H began in childhood when she was a 4-H member and youth leader. As an adult, she was a 4-H trailblazer - she was instrumental in bringing 4-H to pueblo children in New Mexico. She trained adult and youth leaders in public speaking and leadership techniques. She considers her major career accomplishment the great success she had in motivating Native Americans to be independent thinkers.

Rudy Benavidez

Rudy Benavidez of Sandoval County

Inducted in: 2011

On December 31, 2010, Rudy Benavidez retired from New Mexico State University and the Sandoval County Cooperative Extension Service where he served as County Director and Agriculture Agent. Mr Benavidez stated, “Twenty-four years ago I was very fortunate to be selected as the Sandoval County Agriculture Agent. Today I still feel very fortunate and grateful that I was selected.” Over the years, there have been times when Sandoval County didn’t have a 4-H Agent. Mr Benavidez would step up and take on those responsibilities and duties. With the help of many volunteers, he was able to continue the 4-H program and meet the needs of the youth. The greatest 4-H achievement Mr Benavidez accomplished was the establishment of school enrichment programs at several BIA schools. He has valued the 4-H program as a means of connecting culture, tradition and learning opportunities for the youth. Mr Benavidez is a valued as a leader, mentor and friend.

Joy Best

Nominated by: Floyd McAlister Inducted in: 2005

Joy Best of Elida has been active in 4-H her whole life. She won a trip to National 4-H Congress as a state record book winner for Fashion Revue in 1950 and continued to excel in 4-H from then on. Joy was a leader in the Floyd 4-H Club for 10 years, helping members polish their skills. She served as Extension home economist in Roosevelt County for 20 years. She was a member of the New Mexico Association of 4-H Agents, president of the New Mexico Home Economics Association and member of the National Association of Extension Home Economists. Joy held record book workshops that helped many members earn trips to the National 4-H Congress. She initiated the Beef Ambassador Competition in New Mexico and served as state chairman for 10 years. She helped line up sponsorship for the state 4-H Consumer Decision Making competition. Joy received the Distinguished Service Award from the College of Agriculture and Home Economics in 1987.

Frances Blackburn

Nominated by: Curry County

Inducted in: 2002

A 4-H member for two years and a club leader for 39, Frances Blackburn has taken many Curry County 4-H'ers under her wing. She served as a fair superintendent for youth for 20 years and remains involved in the county fair and in Extension Homemakers Club.""

Nancy & C.J. Blackburn

Nominated by: The Dictson's

Inducted in: 2006

"C.J. and Nancy Blackburn of Curry County. C.J. and Nancy Blackburn served as leaders for the Grady 4-H Club in Curry County for 16 years. They encouraged youth to be active in 4-H contests and activities and as a result, youth in the Grady Club won numerous awards at the County, District, State and National levels. They gave unselfishly of their time, providing cattle for judging contests, assisting with record books or simply taking photos. Serving as both transportation and chaperones, the Blackburns were always the first to arrive and the last to leave any county event. The three Blackburn children were successful in 4-H, but so were countless other youngsters with the encouragement and support of C.J. and Nancy Blackburn. Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Blackburn.

Anita Blanton

Inducted in: 2006

"Anita Blanton of Bernalillo County Anita Blanton, Professor Emeritus from Bernalillo County, served as their 4-H Agent for 15 years; then served as County Director until 2002, when she retired. She was best known for encouraging the 4-Hers, Leaders, and the Parents to become involved in Leadership & Volunteerism, to do their best, and to apply for college scholarships. Ms. Blanton was instrumental in the development of the State Leadership Team, Senior Leadership Retreat and the Home Ec Bowl. Previous honors she has received include Honorary 4-H Member, Distinguished Service Awards from both the National 4-H Agents Association & Home Economics Association and the College of Agriculture & Home Economics Distinguished Extension Award. She hopes that she is remembered for "her enthusiasm, a positive attitude and the involvement of everyone in the 4-H Program." Thank you, Mrs. Blanton

Martha Bond

Nominated by: Pete Gnatkowski

Inducted in: 2005

Growing up in 4-H, Martha was more than familiar with the program when she signed on as a Lincoln County 4-H project leader 17 years ago. It wasn’t long until she became organizational leader of the Mal Pais Colts 4-H Club, which after 13 years is one of the largest in the county. Members of this club have been selected as county council officers, 4-H diplomats and ambassadors, state officers in 4-H and FFA, and delegates to National 4-H Congress. She is a leader for many home economics and creative arts projects in the county, member of the county 4-H advisory committee and frequent judge and a superintendent at the county fair. For 18 years, Martha has taught home economics, kindergarten and special education in the public schools. She teaches Sunday school and works on the family ranch north of Carrizozo.

Joan Brock

Nominated by: Sharon Redman - Rio Arriba County

Inducted in: 2003

Dorman Brookey

Nominated by: State 4-H Office

Inducted in: 2002

Dorman Brookey led the state 4-H office from 1956 to 1980, during a time when 4-H was expanding its offerings with projects such as photography, dog obedience and bicycle safety to appeal to the state's growing urban population. His belief that 4-H could help inner-city youth just as well as those from the farm attracted new families to the organization. During his tenure, 4-H participation increased almost tenfold, and the number of adult leaders grew from 900 to more than 3,200.

D.K. Brown

Nominated by: Shelly Oleson - Bernalillo County

Inducted in: 2004

Dr. Larry Brown

Dr. Larry Brown of Dona Ana County

Inducted in 2010

Dr. Larry Brown was the Dona Ana County Extension 4-H agent from 1962 through 1979. During that time, he expanded the 4-H into an urban rather than just rural youth development program meeting the educational needs of approximately 3,500 Dona Ana County youth. Dr. Brown was instrumental in turning the small county 4-H junior livestock show into the Southern New Mexico State Fair, the second largest fair in New Mexico. Dr. Brown saw the need for providing youth with the opportunity to gain work experience at a young age. He developed and presented youth short courses throughout the 4-H program including babysitter training, lawn care clinics, broken window repair clinics and others. Dr. Brown also worked at the National 4-H Council in Washington, D.C. Dr. Still a strong supporter of the Dona Ana County 4-H program, Dr. Brown and his wife established an annual leadership cash award for 2 outstanding 4-Hers in Dona Ana County.

Lloyd and Valdia Buchwald

Nominated by: Santa Fe County Extension Office Inducted in: 2004

Ruby Nealene Bradley

Ruby Nealene Bradley of Quay County

Inducted in 2010

Ruby Nealene Bradley was a 4-H Leader in the Quay Broncs 4-H Club for at least 20 years and most of those as the head leader. During her tenure she encouraged youth to be involved in their community by hosting pit bar-be-cues to raise funds for the small community of Quay. Those 4-H club recipes were even published in a cook book. Her 4-Hers took projects suchas baking and leathercraft as well as rodeo and livestock. She encouraged public speaking skills and demonstrations. Mrs. Bradley loved 4-H so much that even as she fought cancer for the past 6 years she made every attempt to attend county events and support our 4-Hers. As she prepared for her passing this year, she named the Quay County 4-H program as her benefactor and the memorials received will be used to support the County Shotgun Program. Her husband, Jerry Bradley will be accepting this award on her behalf.

Phillip and Kathleen Box

Phillip and Kathleen Box of Quay County

Inducted in 2010

This couple has been part of the Quay County Extension Family for at least 25 years. They served as head leaders of their club for several years, but even when they were not the head leaders, they were very active. Mrs. Box was instrumental in forming a Junior Leaders Association that for several years planned community service and leadership events. The skills this group formed helped them succeed in college and in their careers. These youth formed a sense of community and many are moving back to raise their families in Quay County. The many activities and jobs that this couple participated in are too numerous to list from pitching in to help with office work to hauling kids. As leaders in the community, Mr. and Mrs. Box never forget to stress to others the importance of 4-H for our youth.