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Announcing UFA’s 2016 4-H Alumni Award Winners

UFA Co-operative Limited and 4-H Alberta are proud to acknowledge and celebrate three outstanding 4-H volunteers from Alberta’s rural communities. The 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Awards are presented in recognition of leadership through community investment and volunteer work. “UFA takes being a good neighbour to heart. We are proud to partner with 4-H Alberta to recognize Alberta’s valuable volunteers who take the time to support their community. Volunteers are the heart of their communities and they are the example of what happens when action meets compassion,” says Dina Sutherland, Manager of Community Investment, UFA. 

December 6, 2016 — Forestburg UFA Petroleum Agency —Tracy Dietrich was celebrated as the 2016 grand prize winner of the 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Award in recognition of her contributions to 4-H and her community of Forestburg, AB. Dietrich was presented with a UFA 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Award certificate and a $1,000 UFA gift certificate. According to her nominator, Tracy Dietrich “oozes 4-H.” She is a life-long member and has been the leader of the Hastings Coulee 4-H Beef Club for many years. She has served at the local, district, regional and provincial levels, and has had her hand in organizing numerous community functions. Over the years, Tracey has helped develop the current 4-H community leaders in her community. “There is a whole community of kids who call her ‘Momma T,’ with love,” stated her nominator. “Tracy has had her hand in organizing everything in our community from school functions to pancake breakfasts to 4-H activities. People in our area know that if you want something done, and done right, talk to Tracy.”​​​​​
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​​December 8, 2016 — Grande Prairie UFA Farm & Ranch Supply Store — Tony Mitchell was celebrated as a 2016 winner of the 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Award in recognition of his contributions to 4-H and his community of Sexsmith, AB. Mitchell was presented with a UFA 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Award certificate and a $500.00 UFA gift certificate. According to his nominator, Tony Mitchell “has deep roots in 4-H.” He is not only an alumni himself, but has children involved in the 4-H beef program. He supports 4-H as an assistant leader, but also as an organizer for the local Achievement day. Also, he currently sits as President of Alberta Cattlemen’s and director and announcer for the Peace Country Beef Congress. Over the years Tony has worked relentlessly on his vision to bring pro rodeo to Teepee Creek. It became a reality, and now one of the largest pro rodeos on the circuit visits the Teepee Creek Ag Centre, a structure which was inspired by Tony’s efforts. “Tony is a visionary to many organizations. He sees an opportunity and is able to garner community support to help it grow. He leads with a goal in mind,” explains one of Tony’s nominators.  ​
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​December 9, 2016 — Taber UFA Farm & Ranch Supply Store —Sandra DeGroot was celebrated as a 2016 winner of the 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Award in recognition of her contributions to 4-H and her community of Hays, AB. DeGroot was presented with a UFA 4-H Alumni Volunteer Service Award certificate and a $500.00 UFA gift certificate. According to her nominator, “Sandra DeGroot gives her everything to help rural children in her community enjoy the 4-H experience.” She has an extensive 4-H resume, including but not limited to, project leader for the last ten years, camp mom for six years, and key leader for five years. Over the years Sandra has encouraged everyone to get involved in 4-H and make it a family affair. With the support of Sandra and her husband John, who leads the Hays 4-H Club, the club has grown to over 30 members. “Sandra is the most organized person I know. She believes in sharing and learning from experiences so that there is no ‘reinventing of the wheel’. Her energy and gentle manner help younger members navigate through the 4-H year, giving them nothing but positive support to be successful,” explains Sandra’s nominator. 

To be recognized, the 4-H Alberta Alumni recipient must be a volunteer who has not won the award in the past, be committed to rural communities, have enhanced their community as a 4-H volunteer for at least two years and be involved with more than one community project, group or association. Candidates are nominated by one or more individuals who know them, and UFA chooses the recipient who best fits the award selection criteria. ​​​​