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4-H Canada selects its 2022 National Volunteer Leader of the Year


Alain Blanchette of New Brunswick’s Irishtown 4-H Club has been named the 2022 4-H Canada National Volunteer Leader of the Year.

The National Volunteer Leader of the Year Award recognizes a leader whose dedication and passion for engaging and empowering youth has made a lasting, positive impact on the lives of the 4-H members in their club.

A 4-H leader for over 30 years, Blanchette has an infectious enthusiasm for agriculture and the 4-H movement in Canada. He sits on several provincial 4-H committees, and volunteers as a dairy committee member for The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. In this capacity, he has been instrumental in bringing New Brunswick’s 4-H Dairy Team to take part in the Royal for 25 years.

Alain Blanchette (Image courtesy of 4-H Canada)

Blanchette is an exceptional leader who has not only enriched the lives of the members of his 4-H club, but the lives of youth in agriculture across the province. Alain was nominated by a fellow club leader in his Irishtown 4-H Club in New Brunswick, and will be honoured at the annual 4-H Canada Leadership Awards held virtually on Feb. 28, 2023.

“Volunteers are the backbone of 4-H,” said Shannon Benner, 4-H Canada Chief Executive Officer. “I am delighted to recognize Alain Blanchette as 4-H Canada’s National Volunteer Leader of the Year. Alain has showcased the lasting impact 4-H has on youth through leading by example. His hands-on involvement in the 4-H community has been key to empowering youth to become actively involved in agricultural programs.”

The award is sponsored by Co-operators, an investment and insurance company.

“We’re proud to continue our support of 4-H in its mission to empower youth across the country to create positive change in their communities,” says Greg Laidman, Associate Vice President of Farm Product at Co-operators. “We’re thrilled to congratulate Alain, as this year’s National Volunteer Leader of the Year award recipient. His intrepid leadership and dedication to building a thriving community are reflective of the co-operative values we champion, and we applaud his tireless effort.”

In addition to the national recipient, 4-H Canada announced that the following were recipients of the Provincial Volunteer Leader of the Year Award:

  • Joyce Kelly, Edson 4-H Multi Club, Alberta
  • Dr. Kathy Wilkins, Northumberland 4-H Veterinary Club, Ontario
  • Amanda Hamilton-Seward, Windygates 4-H Beef Club, Manitoba
  • Gillian MacDougall, Shawville 4-H Club, Quebec
  • Gail Wallace, Kensington 4-H Club, Prince Edward Island
  • Christine Moutray, Vanderhoof 4-H District Council, British Columbia
  • Shawn Bartel, Carlton Trail 4-H Club, Saskatchewan
  • These volunteers will be recognized at the annual 4-H Canada Leadership Awards on Feb. 28, 2023. To purchase tickets, or for more
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