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Mower County couple named outstanding lifetime volunteers

Congratulations to Bob and Laurie Balgeman from Mower County. They have been chosen as Minnesota's 4-H Salute to Excellence Outstanding Lifetime Volunteers!

Bob has served as the long-time General Livestock Project Bowl coach. He creates a positive learning environment where young people have fun, are free to ask questions and feel challenged to deepen their learning. His commitment has yielded competitive teams and, more importantly, encouraged young people to reach their potential. Bob has also served as a 4-H club leader and on the county auction committee, 4-H Advisory Board, and Mower County Extension Committee.

Laurie leads the Mower County 4-H Dog Project, and is excellent at recruiting caring adults to support youth in their project learning. One parent said, "Any success that the kids have in training their dogs is due to Laurie's guidance." She has mentored numerous 4-H youth to take on advanced leadership roles including 4-H ambassadors, club leaders, dog trainers and judges.

Laurie and Bob were chosen from an impressive list of nominees by a panel of judges from across Minnesota. The 4-H Outstanding Lifetime Volunteer Award recognizes individuals who have spent 10 or more years volunteering with 4-H and is one of several 4-H Salute to Excellence Volunteer Awards distributed annually.

We're grateful to April VonRuden for submitting this nomination.

Becky Harrington
Director of volunteer systems
Minnesota 4-H

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