ND woman named National 4-H Volunteer of the Year

NDSU Extension
Farm Forum

A retired North Dakota State University Extension agent has received the National 4-H Council's North Central Volunteer of the Year Award for 2020.

Julie Hassebroek worked in Sargent County and advanced to the national competition after being named the state Salute to Excellence 4-H Volunteer of the Year. Very few North Dakotans have been chosen for recognition at the national level.

“She tirelessly pursues, promotes, inspires and exemplifies everything that 4-H and positive youth development are about,” says Cindy Klapperich, Extension’s family and community wellness agent in Sargent County.

“To say that she is passionate about 4-H and positive youth development is a gross understatement because she is over-the-top committed, dedicated and devoted to the 4-H traditions of ‘learn by doing’ and ‘make the best better’ in everything she does,” adds Klapperich, who nominated Hassebroek for the award.

Hassebroek uses youths’ interest in horses and hippology events to help them learn lifelong skills such as thinking, reasoning, problem solving, decision making, communication, service and leadership. Members of the teams she coaches have demonstrated their mastery by performing very well in competitions.

“She is so much more that just a coach to these young people,” says Bobbi Fuhrman, the mother of a 4-H’er. “She is also a mentor, cheerleader, motivator, adviser and friend.”

In addition, Hassebroek and her husband have sponsored monetary awards for the Outstanding Interviews event at the county fair, as well as premiums for 4-H exhibitors at the fair. The Hassebroeks also were part of a small group of donors who matched donations to the North Dakota 4-H Foundation through the Giving Hearts Day campaign in 2018 and 2019.

Hassebroek has been the Horsin’ Around 4-H Club leader and a 4-H hippology coach since 2013, a North Dakota 4-H Equine Advisory Committee member since 2018 and a North Dakota 4-H Foundation board member since March 2019.

“She is extremely generous in giving of her resources and is a master at guiding, supporting, encouraging and mentoring youth to grow and develop through 4-H endeavors,” Klapperich says.

Julie Hassebroek