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Morrison named to Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame

Judy Morrison of Traer was recognized at the Iowa State Fair as Tama County’s 2021 inductee to the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame. Contributed photo

While not a 4-H member herself, 4-H is in the blood of Tama County 2021 4-H Hall of Fame Inductee Judy Morrison. Her father’s aunt, Olive Lyons, was the teacher at the country school near Clarion where the 4-H emblem was born. Judy’s father was a club leader for many years. All three of her older siblings were in 4-H, and her oldest brother was a county youth coordinator for a few years after graduating from ISU. Because her family moved to town when she was young, she did not join 4-H.

While attending ISU, Judy met her future husband, Bruce Morrison. He brought her home to live on his family’s Century Farm in Tama County, where he’d grown up and been a 4-H member. It was only natural that their oldest child joined 4-H in 1991. When they became co-leaders of the Buckingham Boosters in 1997, it made Bruce a third-generation 4-H leader.

Around 2000, Judy created digitized record book forms. She also gave club members picture CDs of the club activities each year. Their three children were active at the club, county, and state level. All had several state fair exhibits, and their daughter placed in the top 10 percent in Fashion Review. The lessons learned by giving multiple 4-H presentations at all three levels impacted them as they each earned at least one All-State medal from the Iowa High School Speech Association. When their youngest son graduated in 2006, Judy and Bruce retired as leaders.

Judy dedicated her career to working with youth as a high school teacher for forty years at North Tama. Believing in supporting students, Judy and Bruce have attended everything from academic, speech, and music activities to athletic events year-round. They have even volunteered at after-prom for over twenty years, including fifteen years after their youngest child graduated! When Judy retired, the school awarded them a lifetime pass to all NT home activities in recognition of their support. Currently, she is secretary of the Traer Lions Club and on her church mission committee.

Judy originally served on the Tama County Extension Council from 1983-85. After a break, she was re-elected to the Council in 2002 and has continued through the present. She has served in various offices and as the chairwoman since 2011. For ten years, Judy volunteered to serve on the Youth Advisory Council. Her committee assignments have included budget and personnel. For the Tama County Extension Centennial celebration, she researched and created multiple display boards showing the county’s Extension history and all of its Extension employees. She shared these boards at the Tama County Farm Bureau Centennial as well. During her long tenure serving on the Council, Judy feels privileged to have worked with so many great people.

Submitted photo.

The Iowa 4-H Foundation sponsors the annual Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the Iowa State Fair. Inductees into the Hall of Fame represent the many people in Iowa who have contributed countless hours to the 4-H program. They work tirelessly to see that Iowa’s youth have a great learning experience in a safe and fun environment. These adults have modeled volunteerism, community service, integrity, and leadership to Iowa’s youth. Their legacy is the young people they have mentored who will in turn support the continuation of a 4-H program that builds Iowa’s leaders. Only one individual or couple per county can be nominated each year. Inductees can be recognized posthumously.

Judy was recognized at the Iowa State Fair on August 22 in a ceremony at the 4-H Exhibit Building. Judy is a tremendous supporter of all youth in their activities and Tama County 4-H thanks Judy Morrison for all her time and support of the 4-H program.

The Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame was established in 2002 as 4-H celebrated 100 years of a program dedicated to teaching youth life skills. During those 100 years, it became evident that one of the essential elements of the 4-H program was the caring adults who were committed to the program.

Past inductees from Tama County include:

2021-Judy Morrison

2020-Jim and Jeanne Beenken

2019-Dale and Connie Whaley

2018-Paulette Wobeter

2017-Margaret Thomsen

2016-Kenneth and Barbara Strohben

2015-Ann McMullin

2013-Keith and Carol Earles

2012-Bernard Dostal

2011-Pat Oettchen

2010-Marilyn Thoms

2009-Jackie Skala

2008-Connie Mattingly

2007-Helen Volline Marie Boldt

2006-Patricia Kadrmas

2004-Pauline Flamme

2003-G. Gress Rogers

2002-Dick Bruene