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Outstanding 4-H, Miller Grove FFA Members, Extension Agent Recognized

Two outstanding 4- members, two Miller Grove FFA members and an Extension Agent received recognition during Monday’s Hopkins County Commissioners Court meeting.

Janie Crump Scholarships

Extension Agent Johanna Hicks presents a $500 Janie Crump Memorial Scholarship to Jorja Bessonett

Hopkins County AgriLife Extension Agents Johanna Hicks and Mario Villarino awarded Jorja Bessonett, a member of Miller Grove 4-H Club, and Savannah Allen, a member of the Sulphur Springs Infiniti 4-H Club as well as Sulphur Springs FFA, with $500 Janie Crump Memorial Scholarships. This award is endowed by the Extension Service in honor of the late Janie Crump, a retire longtime Hopkins County Extension Agent. The award is presented to outstanding youth involved in the program.

Hicks noted that both come from 4-H families. Bessonett’s grandmother and mother were both 4-H members.

Both young ladies have achieved numerous accolated throughout their time with the program. Each is a Gold Star recipient, the highest honor attainable in 4-H and each received the Danforth I Dare You award for outstanding leadership. She has served in several offices in the club, county and district level. Her major projects have been foods and nutrition, family life, beef and health and personal safety. She also received fourth place at state in the record book category, which chronicles their involvement in 4-H, community service and leadership activities. She’s also been very active in community service project at the club and community levels.

Extension Agent Johanna Hicks presents a $500 Janie Crump Memorial Scholarship to Savannah Allen

Hicks noted Bessonett is also a very talented athlete and a scholars, ranked first in her class at Miller Grove ISD.

Bessonett plants to major in kinesiology at Texas A&M University-Commerce, then complete the diagnostic medical stenography program.

Allen has held 4-H offices in the local club, county and state level, most recently serving as a Texas 4-H Livestock Ambassador. Her major projects have included beef, leadership, goats, veterinary science, food and nutrition, public speaking, livestock judging.

She is also an active member of the Sulphur Springs FFA.

Allen plans major in animal science and minor in ag economics at Texas A&M University.

Both Bessonett and Allen have been invited for an interview in College Station for Texas 4-H Opportunities Scholarships on April 24, and will find out in May whether or not they have been selected to receive the state 4-H scholarship award.

District 4-H Round Up

Hicks noted three Hopkins County youth received honors for their participation in the District 4-H Roundup in Farmersville.


Rylie Carroll received first place honors in Fashion Review and the Good Show contests, and third in Public Speaking, qualifying her for state in all three senior level events. However, because she cannot be everywhere at one, she will compete in only two of the senior categories.

Diego Childs won top honors in Poetry and Prose and seventh place in Food Show main dish in the intermediate division of the District 4-H Roundup.

Blaine Allen earned third place honors in the intermediate division Food Show Side Dish competition at the District 4-H Roundup.

Miller Grove FFA Ag Mechanics

Hopkins County Fire Marshal Andy Endsley presents Parker Dyer and Clayton Tackle with certificates of appreciation for the pump trailer Miller Grove FFA built for the fire department.

Hopkins County Fire Marshal Andy Endsley offered appreciation to two members of the Miller Grove FFA for the outstanding workmanship on a project commissioned for Hopkins County Fire Department.

Endsley explained that the fire department approached MGISD agriculture teacher Jeff Gatlin about having students construct a trailer for a pump that could be transported to rural settings, located next to a water way, and used to draft water for uses so that trucks would not have to leave the field to refill tanks during a firefight. It was at the school year when schools closed following spring break 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic. The students, upon return to school this year, have worked on the project during the school year, putting in many extra hours after school to complete the trailer

The students showed the trailer at San Angelo and Hopkins County ag mechanics contests, where the Miller Grove FFA project earned blue ribbons, according to Endsley.

“We are very proud of that. Congratulations. We’d just like to show our appreciation to Parker Dyer and Clayton Tackel,” Endsley said, presenting the MGFFA members with a certificate of appreciation for their work constructing the pump trailer.

Extension Honors

Johanna Hicks
Johanna Hicks

Hicks also received notification from Texas Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences that she will recognized in at the annual conference in July with three awards: the School Wellness Award, Excellence in Teamwork for 4-H Fashion & Interior Design project, and Innovative Youth Development Award for Skills Camp.

Those awards and three additional awards have been forwarded for national judging, with award recipients to be announced in May.

Other Extension Reports

Hicks reported seven participated in the February online “A Fresh Start to a Healthier You” course.

A total of 20 participated in the “Do Well, Be Well with Diabetes,” online series offered by Hopkins, Fannin, Titus and Rockwall counties, including seven Hopkins County participants, and one California resident who registered under Hopkins County.

Five participated in the three-day Adult Sewing Workshop held in late March; four of the five were beginning sewers and a few continue to come back for additional sewing tips and challenges.

Hopkins County hosted the District 4-H Food Challenge at Hopkins County Civic Center; the event drew 38 teams from across the East Texas region. In fact, Extension has gotten to host more than one Extension Agent meeting because of the city’s central location in the region and the availability of space.

Master Wellness volunteers will be heading up a Walk Across Texas initiative starting in May, man an Extension exhibit at the 55+ Health Fair which is also in May, and will assist the Extension Agents in summer youth camp programs.

Villarino thanked the commissioners for seeing to facility repair needs and noted an issue the Extension office has been experiencing with interrupted internet service. Hicks noted the Internet issues have been ongoing for the last couple of months. Villarino noted reliable Internet service is critical for some of the office’s functions and program involvement. The Extension Office’s internet service is tied into the service at the Civic Center. Villarino asked the court to consider addressing the issue. Judge Robert Newsom suggested the Extension Agents and court speak with Civic Center Manager Lonnie Fox about the matter immediately following the morning Commissioners Court meeting.

Precinct 3 Commissioner Wade Bartley complimented the strong and ever growing programs of the local AgriLife Extension Service.

Author: KSST Contributor

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