Hojem: '4-H is a cornerstone in the development of young people'
By STEVE BROWN
PUYALLUP, Wash. -- In the 50 years since the Washington State 4-H Foundation began, the statewide youth program has seen significant changes.
In 1962, the program was composed of 19,000 youths, mostly from rural areas, said Pat BoyEs, statewide director of the program, officially known as Washington State University Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program.
"Today, we have 90,000 members, 80 percent of whom live in cities and suburbs," BoyEs said. "Today's 4-H members are actively engaged in science, technology, engineering, math, citizenship and healthy living projects."
BoyEs credited that expansion to the 4-H Foundation, whose sole mission is to raise funds to enhance and expand state and county 4-H programs. Board members are the official stewards of all donations.
Support comes from individuals, corporations, businesses, trade associations and professional organizations.
A celebration of that half-century of support was held Sept. 21 in the Puyallup Fair and Events Center's Fairview Club.
"4-H is a cornerstone in the development of young people, and any opportunity to contribute to the advancement of this program is an opportunity to secure the future strength of our culture," said Kent Hojem, chief executive officer of the fair and past president of the foundation.
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