The Friend of 4-H Award recognizes a citizen or organization from the community for their contribution to the 4-H Program.
2017 Friend of 4-H Award – Frenz Market
Emily and Jim Gehrke use the beauty of flowers and plants at their business to provide decorations for 4-H events and the County Fair. They provide beautiful standing plants, arches and benches to decorate the stare for 4-H events such as: Variety Show, The Bunny Breakfast, Clothing Revue and so much more. They have donated countless gift certificates and door prizes for judges and more. We have all enjoyed the beautiful flowers, plants and displays that are seen at the County Fair .
Emily works with 4-H youth in the Flowers project teaching not only about flowers but entrepreneurship. She guides youth through the planting processes and the art of dealing with many varieties of plants and flowers. Emily has worked with 4-H members setting up 4-H projects that are displayed in her shop until the fair to teach about successful floral display in a retail setting. Emily has also been a leader in the Foods project for many years, instilling a passion for baking and cooking in our 4-H youth. She has taught members about the science of canning, precision of measuring and the joy of trying new recipes.
Emily grew up in 4-H and her and Jim’s four children were all 4-H members. Their grandchildren are just entering the age of 4-H possibilities which I’m sure we will have the opportunity to witness their success within the 4-H program. Congratulations to Emily and Jim and Thank you for being a Friend to Ozaukee County 4-H.
2017 Friend of 4-H Aware – Ozaukee County 4-H Foundation
The Ozaukee County 4-H Foundation was established in 1982 to help fund education and leadership opportunities for 4-H youth and adult programs. Since its inception the 4-H Foundation has provided financial support for:
- Higher education scholarships for deserving 4-H graduates
- Learning experiences at the county, state, national, and international level through funding educational travel opportunities for youth
- Leadership opportunities for adult volunteers, youth leaders, and camp staff
- Recognition of outstanding youth through the 4-H programs highest award, the “Key Award”
The Foundation Board is made up of wonderful adults and youth members who work hard to raise and manage the endowment. The endowment currently has over $400,000. Each year the earnings on the endowment are invested in the Ozaukee County 4-H program. The Foundation provides about $20,000 each year to support educational travel, training, and countywide activities. They also award annual college scholarships totally approximately $6,000.
Over the last 35 year, countless people have served as Foundation Directors. Currently, Peggy Schoessow has served as the president for the last two years. The entire board puts in countless hours to keep the 4-H Foundation functioning to benefit 4-H youth. The current Directors are: Karen Kroening, Joe Griffin, Mary Clausing, Kay Schroeder, Tim Kohlwey, Michael Tushman, Eileen O’Mahar and Debra Newell. Youth representatives are Sara R., Gabby G. and Ethan P. The Co-coordinators who have served the Foundation for many years are Sue Meiller and Marcia Nosko. Both Sue and Marcia will “retire” from the board after this year.
We truly appreciate the financial support they are able to provide to benefit the youth in the Ozaukee County 4-H program. Thank You for being a great friend of Ozaukee County 4-H.
2016 Friend of 4-H Award – The Roden Family and Echo Valley Farm
The Roden Family is the epitome of 4-H. They have generously donated their time and resources to promote the 4-H program on the club, county, and state levels for many years. The Roden family have never hesitated to open their home and Echo Valley Farm to countless project meetings, club and county activities, picnics, Older Youth Crew events, and Breakfast on the Farm four times.
Although their 5 children have long graduated from 4-H, Bob and Cindy still continue to be active leaders at the club and county levels, including Knellsville 4-H Club, the Ozaukee County Agricultural Society, Ozaukee County Dairy Promotion, and Ozaukee County Fair Board.
As the Roden kids graduated from 4-H, each one immediately became leaders and advisors for the Knellsville 4-H Club as well as 4-H at the county and state levels.
Rick Roden has been an active member of the Leader’s Association Board, Older Youth Crew Advisor, and a dairy leader for 13 years. Patti Roden has been an activity leader for 10 years. As a member of the Variety Show Committee, she has been the back stage manager and coordinator. Patti was a fair building superintendent and has coordinated the sign-up genius for volunteer work shifts for the County Fair for many years.
Amy Roden(Blakeney) has been a Variety Show judge, Mr. and Miss Ozaukee County 4-H judge, and works as a Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation District 2 Coordinator.
Becky Roden(Assmann) is a home environment leader and Older Youth Crew Advisor.
Jacki Roden(Mogenburg) is a home environment leader. She offers summer camps, tractor/farm safety classes, and educational events through Roden Barnyard Adventures. Jacki donates the use of supplies, materials, and equipment to the Ag Adventures display at fair.
All total, the Roden kids have participated as members and leaders in Ozaukee County 4-H for over 65 years. The entire family has donated an additional 75 years of volunteer service to 4-H. The Roden family can be found volunteering at County Fair and other 4-H sponsored events throughout the year. You will see them at many 4-H activities like The Haunt, Jack-o-Lantern Jamboree, Bunny Breakfast, 4-H Dance, 4-H Foundation Bowl-A-Thon, and of course, county fair as they continue to promote and support Ozaukee County 4-H.
Thank you to all the spouses, who support the giving of their spouses’ generous time and talents for Ozaukee County 4-H Youth.
It is exciting to see the next generation of the Roden Family already getting involved! Not only is farming in their blood, so is 4-H. This family truly is a “Friend of 4-H”.
Congratulations Roden Family and Echo Valley Farm on receiving this prestigious award!
2015 Friend of 4-H Award- Kohl’s Associates in Action Program
Kohl’s Department Store of Grafton has been a strong supporter of Ozaukee County 4-H for several years. Their employees have donated their time and contributed numerous amounts of baked goods for special events. Additionally, Kohl’s Corporate Office donates financially to the 4-H Program.
Kohl’s Associates in Action policy states that they believe that everybody has the ability to make a difference. Through their Associates in Action volunteer program, their Associates positively impact our local communities by volunteering with qualifying youth-serving, nonprofit organizations. In support of their Associates’ local volunteer efforts, Kohl’s Corporate Office will award a $500 grant to qualifying organizations. Over the past several years, Kohl’s Grafton Associates have volunteered for many different Ozaukee 4-H events including the Bunny Breakfast, the Haunt, the Jack-O-Lantern Jamboree, 4-H Camp Training, the County Fair, Older Youth activities, individual club activities, and many more. In turn, Kohl’s Corporate Office donated $500 to 4-H for each event. In the past year, they have donated over $5,000 to the Ozaukee County Leaders Association, which does not include grants to individual 4-H clubs.
Grafton Kohl’s Associates never question the need or reason behind our 4-H requests and are always willing to donate their time to help our non-profit events. For each event, Kohl’s recruits a minimum of five associates to donate at least three hours of service.
We are truly grateful to Kohl’s Corporate Office, Grafton Kohl’s Event Captain Laura Struebing, and the local volunteer Associates at the Grafton Kohl’s store. They are very generous 4-H supporters and the perfect example of a community business friend to our 4-H Youth.
2015 Friend of 4-H Award- Ozaukee County Agricultural Society (Fair Board)
The Ozaukee County Agricultural Society has been in existence since 1859. The Ag Society elects the “Fair Board” annually to put on the Ozaukee County Fair. They work throughout the year to obtain vendors, bands, amusement, entertainment and activities for the community to enjoy at the fair. They work with the Ozaukee County Board and have built a close friendship with the Ozaukee 4-H Leaders Association. They are strong supporters of the Ozaukee 4-H Program. They have worked to build a team to help showcase the 4-H Program every year at the county fair, the pinnacle of the 4-H year. In recent years, with the change in ownership of the buildings on the fairgrounds, this organization has been very supportive, doing whatever they can to improve judging, buildings, traffic flow and continuously providing space for 4-H events and projects.
Beyond the fair, Board Members are often found supporting other 4-H fundraisers and events such as the 4-H Haunt & Jack-O-Lantern Jamboree, the 4-H Bowl-a-thon, the 4-H Dance, the recent Plat Books, the 4-H Livestock & Small Animal Auctions and even some project judging. There have been many loyal Fair Board Members in 156 years. The current Board consisting of Roger Boehlke, Mark Larson, Holly Wilger, Bret Priaulx, Jody Brzezinski, Richard Calson, Christa Hackert, Mark Matter, Diane Omdahl, Bob Roden, Dave Salkowski, Natalie Salkowski, Bob Schmidt, Travis Steinert, and Bob Winkel, work diligently to help strengthen and promote the 4-H Program in Ozaukee County.
The Ozaukee County Agricultural Society is truly a “Friend of 4-H”. Congratulations on receiving this long overdue award!
2014 Friend of 4-H Award- Richard Rathke
Rich has always been a fixture when you mention the Ozaukee County Fair 4-H Livestock Auction, held since it first began in 1969. Rich and his father Lutz were instrumental in starting this event that allows 4-Hers enrolled in the Swine, Beef, Dairy Beef, and Sheep projects to have an opportunity to sell their animal at the annual sale. Continuously improving and building upon this annual event, Rich takes great pride in working with his daughter, Linda Boehlke, and several other wonderful Auctioneers to support the 4-H program.
Rich grew up in 4-H. He and his family were known for their Angus cattle, and when he met his wife Evelyn (Lied) Rathke, they shared their love of 4-H with each of their six children. Actively involved in the Beef project with the Little Kohler 4-H Club, Rich and his children and grandchildren are always a go-to staple at the County Fair. He has led by example and encouraged each of his grandchildren in their 4-H endeavors.
Rich is a very humble, unselfish individual who is always encouraging and supportive of anyone he comes in contact with. He is truly a friend of 4-H.
2014 Friend of 4-H Award- Saukville Rifle and Pistol Club
The Saukville Gun Club has been instrumental in providing support for the shotgun and rifle projects for the past five year. Saukville Gun Club allows 4-H to use their facility free of charge. They provide target, trap and skeet shooting. They provide the volunteers to open their facility for the rifle and shotgun projects. They also help instruct the youth.
Saukville Gun Club allows 4-H to keep a storage locker on site for our supplies at no charge. They provide youth guns for those who need them. They purchase ammunition and clay targets for us and give us a significant discount. They allow the 4-H members to participate in their summer trap shooting league at a 50% discount. This year Saukville Gun Club hosted the Kettle Moraine Shooting Sports Tournament, agreeing to follow 4-H rules without question.
We have and are honored to be able to work with Saukville Gun Club. Their support of 4-H and the shooting sports program is amazing. They help us in every way possible. They value teaching the youth the proper ways and etiquette of the shooting sports. They want our youth to be successful. We are pleased to recommend Saukville Gun Club as this year’s “Friend of 4-H”.
2013 Friend of 4-H Award- Fred Buechler
Growing up Fred Buechler was able to participate but did not actually enroll in county 4-H. He grew up on a farm in Belgium and enjoyed what 4-H had to offer. He has always been an active member of his community. He has been an active member of the Belgium Lions club for more than 30 years. He and his wife, Cheri hosted the Third Annual Breakfast on the Farm. He also worked for many years in the Farm Bureau tent as a supportive member. When his 3 children, Brenda, Brian and Bret were old enough to join 4-H, they joined the Knellsville 4-H Club and became involved in the swine and dairy projects. Fred became very active in helping his children and became the Knellsville Swine project leader. He continued with this until Brenda and Brian were through the 4-H program.
Fred has always had a passion to support the 4-H program and has enjoyed supporting several of his nieces, nephews and grandchildren in their 4-H projects. After retiring from farming he currently owns and operates Buechler Trucking LLC and Fred Buechler Auction Services LLC. In both of the business’s he bids on the trucking for the Ozaukee County Livestock Association each year for county fair. He helps as an auctioneer for the Livestock Association Auction held on Thursday night during county fair. He is also an active bidder and buyer at the annual auction. As a part of his business, he hosts an annual Spring and Fall Consignment Auction and has allowed the Jay Road 4-H Club to run the concessions on the grounds as a fundraiser. Fred has demonstrated his passion and support of the program. He is a true Friend of 4-H.
Friends of 4-H
1953 Dr. Moats, Sr.
1960 Waubeka Mill
1961 County Homemakers
1963 Port Savings & Loan
1965 Wasaukee Horseman’s Club
1966 Cedarburg Fire Department
1967 Dr. Bailey & Vern Arendt
1968 Mrs. Helen Weyker
1970 Gordon Griffiths & Roman Hoffman
1971 Art Kelm
1972 Erwin Riemer
1974 Lutz Rathke
1975 Mr./Mrs. Emil Paulus & Mr. Russell T. Gilman
1976 Al Raetl & Warren Wickesburg
1977 Ray Blank
1980 John Blank
1982 Fred Scherf / Clarence (Otto) Neumann
1983 Mr. /Mrs. Arnold Groth
1984 Randy Rieve / Dr. Moats, Sr.
1986 Milton Krumhus & George / Ellen Binsfeld-Lavista
1987 Ray Maas
1988 Earl/Loraine Boehlke
1989 Bill Ames
1989 Mark Paulus
1990 Roland Kison
1991 Richard Hauser
1992 Jack Janik / Ruth Mengsol
1993 Rhea Yovanovich
1994 Ellen Stocks
1995 Alice Sedgwick / Ambruster Jewelers
1996 Harold C. Dobberpuhl
1997 Kewaskum Frozen Foods
1998 Ozaukee County Dairy Promotion Committee
1999 LeRoy Haeuser
2000 Phyllis Linden
2001 Olsen’s Piggly Wiggly — Cedarburg
2002 Wayne Houpt/Suburban Harley-Davidson
2003 The Family of S. Duane Stroebel Sr.- Christine Stroebel-Scimeca, Robin Stroebel Cruz and Duey Stroebel, Jr.
2004 Beacon Health
2005 Roman Weninger/Five Corners Dodge
2006 Saukville Feeds
2007 Farm Bureau Breakfast Committee
2007 Karrels Dairy Equipment
2008 Boehlke Hardware/Boehlke Bottled Gas
2009 Deb Kranitz/News Graphic
2010 Sager Happy Holsteins/John & Caryn Sager
2011 Melichar Broad Acres
2012 Kenneth Riemer
2013 Fred Buechler
2014 Richard Rathke
2014 Saukville Rifle and Pistol Club
2015 Kohl’s Associates in Action Program
2015 Ozaukee County Agricultural Society (Fair Board)