Meet the 4-H Canada Board of Directors
The 4-H Canada Board of Directors is a volunteer governance board comprised of individuals from across Canada.
Valerie Stone, ON
A graduate of the 4-H program growing up, Valerie was also the Ontario representative on the 4-H Canada Youth Advisory Committee for three years. Valerie would like to pass on what she learned in 4-H and continue to bring her passion, enthusiasm, authenticity, and unique perspective to the 4-H Canada Board of Directors.
Ida Thomas, ON
Ida Thomas participated in 4-H as a teen and attributes a significant part of her leadership development journey to the opportunities she has had. Today, Ida holds the role of Vice President, Children Teens and Young Adults for the YMCA Canada.
David Hovell, NS
David Hovell of Port Williams, NS, an agri-business booster, wine tourism enthusiast and 4-H activist, operates North America’s only winery tourism destination experience aboard a traditional British double decker bus. He holds a variety of business interests and is a former Executive Director of the Wolfville Business Development Corp. His 4-H history dates back to 1978, as a member of the Cornwallis Project 4-H Club. David has volunteered with 4-H Nova Scotia since 1988. In 2006, he was elected a Trustee of the Canadian 4-H Foundation, later serving as its Chair. David’s proudest moment in his 4-H career was when his daughter, Taylor, joined Cornwallis Project 4-H Club - now he is a 4-H Dad!
Eric Dalke, AB
Eric is an agricultural lawyer practicing in Calgary, AB, in the areas of real estate, corporate, tax, and estate planning. He is a proud 4-H alumnus and former member of the Windygates 4-H Beef Club in Manitoba. Eric grew up on a family farm and is passionate about serving clients in the agricultural industry. He attended Queen’s University where he received a B.A. in Political Studies, and then a Juris Doctor at the University of Calgary Faculty of Law. Eric was called to the Alberta Bar in 2016. He has worked with a national policy organization and parliamentarians on matters important to the agricultural industry.
Robert Larsen, PEI
From an early age, Robert, a youth agvocate, has worked on his family’s fourth generation beef farm in Cape Traverse, Prince Edward Island. He has been involved with the Albany Centennial 4-H Club for ten years. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of both the Summerside District 4-H Council and the PEI 4-H Council. As a founding member of the 4-H PEI Members Advisory Committee, Robert believes in empowering youth by giving them a vehicle for their voices to be heard. Robert is pursuing a Bachelor of Agriculture Business from Dalhousie’s Faculty of Agriculture.
Kim McConnell, AB
Kim McConnell is the founder of AdFarm, one of the largest agricultural marketing communications firms in North America. Kim is a passionate supporter of 4-H Canada, and a director with a number of companies and organizations. Kim was recently appointed a Member to Order of Canada by the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada for his service to his community and country. McConnell was named along with 99 other accomplished Canadians who have contributed in their way to helping and elevating the status of Canadians at home and abroad. Kim has been giving back to his community since his days in the 4-H McConnell Beef Club, the oldest beef club in Canada, out in Hamiota, Manitoba. He is also the recipient of many national business awards, and in 2012 was inducted into the Canadian Agricultural Hall of Fame.
Stefanie Nagelschmitz, ON
Stefanie works as Farm Show Team Lead and Communications for Canada's Outdoor Shows LP, organizers of Canada's Outdoor Farm Show and Ag In Motion. In 2015, Stefanie seized the opportunity to work as Overlay Site Manager for the Toronto 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games equestrian venues. Stefanie is originally from Middlesex County, ON and a proud alumnus of the Thorndale 4-H livestock clubs. Starting with her 4-H experiences, she strongly belives in the power of youth leadership.
John Ross, ON
Carlie Whetter, MB
Carlie was raised on a mixed farm in southwestern Manitoba. She was a member of the Kenton Kraftsmen 4-H Club, and a Manitoba 4-H Ambassador as an alumni. Now, as the progressive and innovative head leader of the Alexander 4-H Club, a large multipurpose club, she has adapted and flexed programming to meet the needs of over 40 club members. Carlie has been active in zone, area and provincial associations, most recently as president of Manitoba 4-H Council with her term ending November 2018. Carlie and her husband Darren have 3 kids, all involved in 4-H, and operate a grain farm growing certified seed. Carlie also works part-time as a consultant for a real estate company.
Cassidy Barnert, AB
YOUTH ADVISORY COMMITTEE REPRESENTATIVE TO THE BOARD
Cassidy Barnert from Okotoks, AB has been a member of the Millarville Mutts and Mustangs for 14 years where her completed projects included beef, horse and canine. Cassidy’s biggest highlight as a 4-H’er was being one of 10 members across Canada to be selected for the Going Global Service Learning Trip to Ghana in July 2016. Now that her years as a member have come to an end, she has returned as the canine project leader and loves sharing her passion for 4-H with the young 4-H’ers. Aside from 4-H, she is currently starting her own equine therapy business focusing on performance and rehab.
Eugenie Officer, QC
YOUTH ADVISORY COMMITTEE REPRESENTATIVE TO THE BOARD
Eugenie has always held a grand passion for agriculture, and the need to promote a positive discourse around it. Through 4-H she believes that all youth are given the tools necessary to feel both empowered and valued within their rural communities. She has been fully involved in 4-H since her start within the organization and has held executive positions at a club level as well as a provincial level in Quebec.
Eugenie is currently pursuing a Bachelor of History with a minor in Agricultural Science at the University of Guelph. She hopes to work in the field of agricultural communications, where she will continue to promote a positive voice for Canadian agriculture.