Following the June 13 competition, the 4-H'ers toured metro Atlanta, meeting with donors, state legislators and corporate leaders. A June 14 banquet honored the state winners.
Hard Work Pays Off
Georgia 4-H is the youth education component of the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. State Congress is the culmination of a year's work in 4-H projects. Of the thousands of 4-H'ers who competed at the county level, only 267 made it to State Congress.
4-H'ers prepare a portfolio of their project work, participate in an interview about their portfolio and give an oral presentation for this statewide competition.
And the Winners Are:
Here are this year's state winners, projects and project donors, listed by their home counties.
Atkinson: Jennifer White won in environmental sciences, sponsored by Georgia Propane Gas Association.
Bartow: Emmie Gooch won in sports, sponsored by White Water.
Bulloch: Rebecca Creasy won in veterinary science, sponsored by the Georgia Veterinary Medical Association.
Butts: John Brown won in outdoor recreation, sponsored by White Water. Amy Fletcher won in fashion revue, sponsored by the Georgia Master 4-H Club.
Clarke: Stephanie Whorton won in food safety and preservation, sponsored by Savannah Foods & Industries.
Colquitt: John Gibbs won in computers, sponsored by Georgia Power.
Crisp: Stewart McKinney won in workforce preparation and career development, sponsored by the Georgia 4-H Foundation. Lauren Westbrook won in wildlife and marine science, sponsored by Georgia Power.
DeKalb: Nate Tate won in communications, sponsored by Jackson Electric Membership Corporation.
Dooly: Alvie Coes III won in resource management, sponsored by the Georgia Cooperative Council.
Early: Katrina Smith won in health, sponsored by Egleston Scottish Rite Children's Medical Center.
Effingham: Erica Kessler won in dairy foods, sponsored by the Georgia 4-H Foundation. Crystal Starling won in safety, sponsored by Atlanta Gas Light. Karla Groce won in arts and crafts, sponsored by Georgia Recreation and Park Association.
Elbert: Ross Oglesby won in sheep, sponsored by the Georgia 4-H Foundation.
Forsyth: Julie Ditmore won in plant and soil science, sponsored by Georgia Plant Food Educational Society.
Gwinnett: Luke Gaines won in power and energy, sponsored by Chevron.
Harris: Matthew Newberry won in physical, biological and earth sciences, sponsored by Georgia EMC.
Johnson: Michael Cason won in food funds, sponsored by General Mills.
Lanier: Dannyelle Wilcox won in food for fitness, sponsored by Savannah Foods & Industries. Chris Curtis won in food fair, sponsored by Savannah Foods & Industries.
Lee: Kelle Spencer won in dairy and milk science, sponsored by the Agricultural Commodity Commission for Milk.
Morgan: Meredith Bryans won in horse, sponsored by Gold Kist.
Oconee: Veronica Burgess won in photography, sponsored by the Georgia 4-H Foundation. Erin Shealy won in bread, sponsored by White Lily Foods Company.
Peach: Kelli James won in performing arts (piano), sponsored by Six Flags Over Georgia.
Tift: Laura Bland won in clothing and textiles, sponsored by Southern Polytechnic State University. Matthew Clegg won in target sports, sponsored by the Calloway Foundation and the family of Col. James "Jim" Boddie. Mary Beth Lee won in dog care and training, sponsored by the Georgia VMA. Andrew Leidner won in conservation of natural resources, sponsored by the Georgia Water Wise Council.
Union: Brian Lance won in beef, sponsored by Winn-Dixie.
Walton: Ruthie Hull won in housing, furnishings and design, sponsored by the Georgia Manufactured Housing Association. Jillian Nelson won in flowers, shrubs and lawns, sponsored by the Georgia Development Authority.
Wilcox: Candice Clark won in fruits, nuts and vegetables, sponsored by Griffin Corporation. Joel McKie won in swine, sponsored by the Georgia Pork Producers Association.
Wilkes: Ashley Branan won in public speaking, sponsored by Ag South Farm Credit.
Wilkinson: Brandelyn Scott won in performing arts (vocal), sponsored by Six Flags.
(Faith Peppers is the director of public affairs with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)