GUELPH, ONT (March 29, 2023) – 4-H Ontario is proud to announce the recipients of the 2023 4-H Ontario Arbor Award, sponsored by Bayer Crop Science Inc., a prestigious honour recognizing exemplary volunteer service with 4-H Ontario and the community. In 2023, the following three volunteers were recognized with this distinct award: Brian Anderson (Perth 4-H Association), Patty Lasby (Halton 4-H Association) and Carol Pollock (Wellington 4-H Association).
The recipients were honoured at the 4-H Ontario Arbor Awards Banquet on March 25, 2023. Each of the recipients received an award featuring a hand-crafted metal sculpture of a tree and in addition, a tree will be planted in a location of their choice in honour of their contributions to the 4-H program and their community.
“Our 2023 4-H Ontario Arbor Award recipients are tremendously deserving individuals who have given their lives in service to 4-H for many years,” says Megan Burnside-Poitras, Volunteer & Database Manager, 4-H Ontario. “The impact that each of these individuals has had on the lives of volunteers and youth around them is remarkable and their contributions serve as a beautiful example of what it means to truly embrace outstanding volunteerism within the 4-H program.”
Established in 2001 during the International Year of the Volunteer, the 4-H Ontario Arbor Award recognizes a select group of 4-H Ontario volunteers who have served the organization for over 10 years and have positively impacted 4-H and their local community. This is 4-H Ontario’s most prestigious volunteer award.
“We support this important achievement because know how critical volunteers are to 4-H Ontario and our communities,” says Ginger Rozmus, Sr. Communications Business Partner, Bayer Inc. “We are genuinely inspired by these long-standing volunteers who have a significant impact on 4-H youth – our future community leaders.”
To be eligible to receive the award, 4-H Ontario volunteers must be nominated by their local 4-H Association. Nominees must have shown significant leadership, initiative and made a positive impact on 4-H at various levels. In addition, nominees must have other involvement within their community or other volunteer organizations. The selection committee consists of previous Arbor Award winners.
Learn more about each of the 2023 4-H Ontario Arbor Award recipients below.
Brian Anderson is a 4-H alumni who has been a 4-H volunteer in Perth 4-H Association for 30 years, leading over 40 4-H clubs during his tenure. In addition to leading the dairy club for numerous years, Brian has played an active role in organizing other opportunities for 4-H’ers such as the association’s championship show and achievement days. Brian does an excellent job encouraging youth to be the best they can be, whether they had a tough day in the show ring or stepping out of their comfort zone at a 4-H meeting.
“Whether it is through chaperoning [at] dairy shows, promoting the 4-H program to sponsors or loaning calves to kids from town who may not otherwise have an opportunity to participate in a dairy club, Brian’s passion for 4-H is well known and appreciated,” says Julie, fellow 4-H volunteer.
Brian donates his time beyond 4-H, serving on the Stratford and District Agricultural Society Board of Directors for more than 20 years, in addition to other community groups and boards. Fellow volunteers noted that Brian is always a phone call away for advice and support and has inspired many youth to pursue careers in agriculture.
“I have been a 4-H [participant] or leader almost all my life and I am the proud second generation of a four generation 4-H family. Teaching new skills to young people is incredibly satisfying. I enjoy being able to watch them grow into wonderful adult members of the community,” says Brian, 2023 Arbor Award recipient.
Patty Lasby became a 4-H volunteer in 1998, celebrating her 25th anniversary as a volunteer in 2023. She began her 4-H journey as a youth participant, completing over 30 4-H projects including beef, sheep, photography, foods and horticulture. Throughout her time with 4-H, Patty has been involved in many Halton 4-H Association activities, the Ontario 4-H Council and the Ontario 4-H Foundation, among many other organizations including local fairs and the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair.
“Her hard work and continued dedication to the 4-H program does not go unnoticed,” says Sandra, fellow 4-H volunteer. “Patty has a heart of gold and is willing to help anyone, anytime and always with a happy demeanor. She wears her kindness and love for family, 4-H and friends on her sleeve.”
Patty has given countless hours to 4-H so that every youth and volunteer can have the best possible experience as they ‘Learn To Do By Doing’. She has dedicated her life to 4-H to give back what she gained from being involved in the program as a youth.
“The 4-H program has made me the person I am today; [teaching] the skills you need to be successful in life. The people you meet become long-time friends; the opportunities were endless. Once I finished as a [youth], I became a volunteer so I could give back to the program. I am honored to receive the Arbor Award and would like to thank all the people that supported, stood by me, and encouraged me to keeping go and never to give up,” shares Patty, 2023 Arbor Award recipient.
Carol Pollock has been a 4-H volunteer for over 35 years, leading more than 100 4-H clubs and dedicating her time to many activities throughout the local, regional, provincial, and national level. Her 4-H journey began in the Bruce 4-H Association as a youth participating in many life skills clubs and the dairy club. Over her volunteer tenure she has held various roles in the Wellington 4-H Association and most recently was instrumental in the continued success of the local program throughout the pandemic. Noted by many, Carol always goes above and beyond, working tirelessly to create the best experience for youth in 4-H.
“There are not enough good things to say about Carol’s dedication to our community, to 4-H and to OAAS,” says June, fellow 4-H volunteer. “She is a truly worthy candidate in every sense of the word.”
Carol’s efforts are not contained to 4-H, volunteering with many community organizations such as the Erin Agricultural Society, Ontario Agricultural Societies, local sports clubs and more. Her two daughters participated in 4-H and upon graduating from the program became 4-H leaders; proof that Carol’s volunteer spirit is truly contagious.
“I have always looked at 4-H as an accepting organization that encourages [youth] to be good people and develop some practical and leadership skills along the way. I am honoured to now be part of a group of recipients who have given so much of their skills and time to this organization to the benefit of everyone,” shares Carol, 2023 Arbor Award recipient.
About 4-H Ontario
4-H Ontario is a non-profit positive youth development organization that builds youth as leaders within their communities and assets to the world. With roots in rural Ontario, today it is open to youth of all backgrounds across the province. 4-H youth ages 6–21 and screened, engaged volunteer leaders come together to learn about selected topics through fun hands-on activities and mentorship. There are also provincial camps, conferences, competitions and national and international travel opportunities available to further develop skills in leadership, business, self-confidence and more. 4-H provides youth with a place they can be involved, accepted, valued and heard while developing valuable skills for leadership and life.
For more information please contact:
Laura Goulding, Manager, Communications, 4-H Ontario
About Bayer Crop Science Inc.
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of health care and nutrition. Its products and services are designed to help people and the planet thrive by supporting efforts to master the major challenges presented by a growing and aging global population. Bayer is committed to driving sustainable development and generating a positive impact with its businesses. At the same time, the Group aims to increase its earning power and create value through innovation and growth. The Bayer brand stands for trust, reliability and quality throughout the world. In fiscal 2022, the Group employed around 101,000 people and had sales of 50.7 billion euros. R&D expenses before special items amounted to 6.2 billion euros. For more information, go to www.bayer.ca.
For more information, contact:
Ginger Rozmus, Sr. Business Partner
Communications, Public Affairs, Science & Sustainability, Bayer Inc.
Ginger.firstname.lastname@example.org | (403) 805-3320