Voters will have the opportunity to elect four members of the Plymouth County Extension Council from a slate of six candidates at the Nov. 6 general election.
“The council members elected this year will be involved in bringing educational opportunities to Plymouth County for the next four years,” Carol Schneider, County Program Coordinator said. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach – Plymouth County educational programming is a cooperative effort involving local citizens, Iowa State University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Extension council members are elected at large, and all voters in the county are eligible to vote for four candidates.
Candidates on this year’s ballot include:
Alex Popken of Orange City
As a resident of Plymouth County, Alex hopes to bring forward some of the challenges county residents face and would like to let the county know how extension can help. He would like to serve on the extension council because he feels that it is important to be an active part of the community. Alex feels that his active background in agriculture will make him a valuable asset to the council.
Brad Harvey of Akron
Brad feels that he could offer many great ideas and concerns of the county that extension could become a part of if re-elected to the extension council. Having a farming background he can also keep agriculture strong in extension. Brad’s goal would be to let everyone know that extension is one of the best kept secrets of the county and to help get the word out about all of the programs extension has to offer. ISU Extension builds partnerships and provides researched based learning opportunities and he would like to be proactive with extension programs when the county needs them the most. Brad currently serves on the extension council and is the chair of the council.
Cindy Klemme of Akron
Cindy would like to bring new ideas and outlooks to the extension program for Plymouth County. She has an interest and a background in the farming community. She is open minded and ready to face what changes are necessary for the future of our youth. Cindy has also served on the 4-H & Youth Committee and on the sheep and poultry committees for the Plymouth County Fair. Her children were involved in 4-H & FFA. Cindy enjoys working with youth to help fulfill their goals and planning for the future.
Deb Baldwin of Merrill
Deb is a lifelong resident of Plymouth County and has also served two terms on the council in the 90’s. She has a desire to give back to the community through volunteer opportunities. If elected, Deb would help the council members and the extension office offer researched based learning opportunities to the county. Through her work as a nurse for 38 years she has worked with a variety of professionals, families, and children. She is passionate about 4-H programs as her children would 4th generation Plymouth County 4-H members.
Pat Lehner of Le Mars
Pat has been a 4-H volunteer in Plymouth County for over 30 years and also an alumni of Plymouth County 4-H. She will soon complete her first 4 year term on the extension council and feels that she is just beginning to understand how everything fits together. Pat would like to be re-elected to add more insight on the decisions made at the county level. She would like to help extension flourish by expanding the services that are offered here in the county. Pat currently serves on the extension council and serves as the treasurer.
Yvette Bowen of Le Mars
Yvette would like to bring her excitement for youth and programming to the council and extension if elected. She has experience working with youth through church. Yvette would like to become more involved in the community and learn what Plymouth County has to offer. As a parent of young children, Yvette has insight as to the needs of active young families in the community. She has one child who is already involved as a 4-H member in the county. She would like to offer her service to extension to provide more opportunities for citizens of Plymouth County.
Council members whose terms expire this year are Dr. John Conley of Le Mars, Brad Harvey of Akron, Pat Lehner of Le Mars and Sandy Schnepf of Le Mars. Carryover council members whose terms continue through the end of 2014 are Chad Banks of Westfield, Glen Hayworth of Kingsley, Jim Jauer of Hinton, and Jill Utestch of Remsen
Successful candidates will take office in January 2013. Extension council members make policy, programming and budget decisions for Plymouth County Extension and Outreach.
County councils contribute to a unique attribute of ISU Extension and Outreach – being present when needs arise and staying for the long haul. Council members and some 17,000 Iowa volunteers work with Extension and Outreach to increase the staying power. Through partnerships, they provide resources, research and education to assist Iowans.
ISU Extension and Outreach has 100 field offices, providing local access to extension programs in all 99 counties. For more information, visit www.extension.iastate.edu or contact the Plymouth County Extension Office.