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National honors for Kansas 4-H volunteers

James Bassett, Topeka, and Ray Bartholomew, Hutchinson, were honored in October 2017 for their dedication to Kansas 4-H Youth Development. Bassett was named to the National 4-H Hall of Fame. Bartholomew received the Friend of Extension Award from the national chapter of Epsilon Sigma Phi, an association of county extension agents and specialists.

Bassett (B.S.’ 59 feed science and management) joined the Kansas 4-H Foundation Board of Trustees in 2004, bringing 38 years of Cargill global executive management experience.

“I know of no other organization that can do more for youth than the 4-H programs that are so dependent on the role of volunteers,” Bassett said. “I know of nothing more important than growing the volunteer ranks and providing them the resources they need to implement 4-H programs.”

He is the 15th Kansan inducted into the National 4-H Hall of Fame, more than any other state.

Bartholomew (B.S. ’77 agricultural economics) has volunteered for the Kansas 4-H shooting sports program for 20 years, serving as the program’s state volunteer coordinator for the last 10 years.

“For me, it’s a passion,” said Bartholomew, who credits his time as a 4-H member in Osborne and Rooks counties for teaching him leadership and commitment to service. “I get to do something I enjoy doing and pass on those opportunities to work with firearms, work with archery equipment, and to do it safely.”

He is a farm loan manager for USDA’s Farm Service Agency.