Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Whitman County Places 10 in New State 4-H Hall of Fame

PULLMAN, Wash. — Ten people have been honored for contributions to 4-H in Whitman County.

Inducted Oct. 18 into the newly created Washington State 4-H Hall of Fame were: Helen and Dick Appel, Rt. 1 Box 26, Endicott; Harry Burcalow, 6116 Pittsburgh, Spokane; Della Evans, Box 71, LaCrosse; and Bud Downing, Rt. 1, Box 431, Lester Liebel, 1515 Footloose Drive, Lucy Linden, 500 SE Crestview, Clint Luce, 1505 NW Deane, and Rita Sullivan, 505 SE Spring St., all Pullman; and the late Orville Young.

Helen and Dick Appel have been involved with three generations of 4-H youth, working both as program members and as leaders.

Dick has served as the Palouse Empire Fair Sheep Superintendent. He started “Daddy’s Little Shepherd” contest, which is still one of the most popular at the fair. Today Dick helps with the Sheep Grooming Contest, which he started, and the Old Fogy’s contest. He also serves as President of the Washington State Woolgrowers.

Dick and Helen started the popular “Lads and Ladies Lead” contest. Helen has worked as the Sheep Barn Secretary for years. She is involved with the Make It With Wool program and serves on the state 4-H Fair Board.

Burcalow was associate dean of the Washington State University College of Agriculture and Home Economics and associate director of WSU Cooperative Extension from 1995-1998. He previously held several Cooperative Extension positions at WSU and the University of Minnesota. His 4-H involvement goes back to Aitkin County, MN, where he was County Extension Director in 1964.

Currently Burcalow is on the Board of the Washington State 4-H Foundation. When he retired in1998, he asked that all remembrances go into an endowment to support small grants for the Washington 4-H Program.

Evans was a 4-H leader for 25 years. She worked as horse superintendent at the Palouse Empire Fair, and worked 10 years in the fair office with registration and computing points earned for all 4-H fair participants.

When she retired from that volunteer position, it was filled with a paid staff member. She is a past recipient of the Whitman County Fair Hall of Fame award. Today Della takes pictures during the county fair and puts together a scrapbook each year, at her own expense.

Evans has been a member of the State Leader’s Council, serving as President in 1976. She was a State 4-H Foundation Board Trustee for 10 years. Della took a group of youth from Oregon and Washington to the National Know Your Government Conference in 1982. She and Joe Johnson helped revamp the State Horse Program in the late 70’s.

Downing worked with Cooperative Extension for 39 years, starting in 1954 as a 4-H Farm Advisor in Los Angeles County, Calif. In 1974 Bud accepted a position at WSU as 4-H youth specialist.

At WSU, Downing organized the first State Community Pride Conference, which was held in 1974. In June 1975 he chaired the State 4-H Conference and helped found the State 4-H Ambassador Program. In 1979 he assumed responsibility for the State 4-H Fair and held that assignment until his retirement.

In 1985 Downing chaired the Tri-State 4-H Computer Project Development Committee. In 1990 he became Interim Chair of the Dept. of Adult & Youth Education, while continuing his 4-H assignments. Downing retired in 1992.

Libel joined the Highlands 4-H Club at age 10 and exhibited prize-winning produce at the Benton County Fair for several years. In 1948 he received an agriculture degree at Washington State College and started his first job as assistant county agent in Grant County.

There Liebel helped organize and conduct 4-H clubs for Grant and Douglas counties. From 1952-57 Liebel farmed near Johnson, Wash. He left the farm to accept a position as county agent in Stevens County. In 1962, he accepted a fellowship to work toward his doctorate in extension administration and community leadership at the University of Wisconsin. In 1965 he returned to WSC as state leader in extension research and training. Liebel retired from WSU in 1981.

Linden began her 4-H career in 1967. Nurturing “Citizens of the World” through citizenship and cross-cultural education were Lucy’s prime 4-H interests. She worked with Washington families and youth who hosted foreign visitors, or who visited abroad. She was involved in the International Foreign Youth Exchange and the Japan Exchange programs. Her Japanese Exchange orientation materials were used across the country.

Know Your Government introduced the duties and responsibilities of citizenship through community improvement, mock trials, exploring media influence in the political process, and the role of lobbyists and personal contacts with legislators in Olympia.

Some of the youth Linden worked with are now legislators, lawyers, foreign service employees, and elected officials. She retired from WSU in 1996.

Luce worked with the 4-H program throughout his tenure as Whitman County Extension Agent from 1954-1988. Luce is in demand as a Livestock Judge throughout Washington and other states.

He is on the State 4-H Foundation and served several years on the Washington State Fair Commission. Luce has received many local, state, and national awards. Recently the Palouse Empire Fair inducted him into its Hall of Fame.

Sullivan played a major role in planning and organizing State 4-H conferences for 20 years. She also helped lead the Know Your Government Conference and helped launch several new projects, including the Beginning Home Economics project, the 4-H Dog project, Personal Development program, and the Career Exploration program.

Young was Director of WSU Cooperative Extension for 12 years, the longest term of anyone to hold the position. He helped promote the Washington State 4-H Foundation during its early years. Upon his death, in 1988, the J.O. Young Memorial Endowment was established to provide an annual 4-H scholarship.

Induction of the first one hundred people was announced at a State 4-H Forum in Ocean Shores. The hall of fame was created as part of the 4-H centennial celebration.

More than 93,500 Washington youths are enrolled in 4-H programs; over 20,300 are enrolled in 1,733 clubs. Another 73,000 participate in a variety of other 4-H activities, such as the school enrichment program, day camps and overnight camping.

More than 10,300 adult volunteers support 4-H, which is Washington State University Cooperative Extension’s informal, educational program for today’s young people. The program combines the cooperative efforts of youth, volunteer leaders, WSU faculty, federal state local governments, and businesses.

– 30 –

(509) 397-6290 for Janet Schmidt, 4-H Agent