The Gilbert Livestock UACE 4-H Club is a family affair for the Johnsons.
Holly Johnson, 16, has been active in the club since she was 9 and volunteering since age 4. She has raised pigs, lambs, goats, chickens and turkeys, and she teaches younger 4-H club kids how to show livestock. In 2011, she showed a lamb and helped behind the scenes with the auction at the Maricopa County Fair.
Her dad is the Gilbert 4-H Livestock club leader, and her mom volunteers non-stop for 4-H events. Both of her grandfathers have been involved. Holly might just bleed 4-H green, if you pricked her with a pin.
“You get to meet so many new people. You get to serve the community,” said the Clover Kids leader who has collected food for a food bank and taught younger kids agriculture literacy. “I love being able to go out and give back to my community.”
Holly’s dad, Ken Johnson, was involved in 4-H while growing up in Peoria. He now teaches agriculture in southeast Maricopa County at Gilbert High School. Involvement in 4-H youth development enriches his classroom effectiveness, he said. “The camaraderie that we have helps me as a teacher, because I’m not just a teacher,” he said.
Sheri Johnson, Holly’s mom, helps with 4-H meetings, hosts club events at her home and manages the finances for the fair auction. Sheri’s dad, auctioneer Tim Anton, volunteers at the county fair auction.
All of the family involvement has been good, Ken said. “It’s kept us closer,” he said.