PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State 4-H sent 16 youth and 15 adult leaders to Washington, D.C., as delegates to the National Conversation on Youth Development in the 21st Century, Feb. 27 – March 2. The conference culminated a process that began with local and then state meetings involving more than 100,000 youth and adults.

National priorities were formed from priorities presented by each state. In Washington, D.C., delegates met with senators, representatives and delegates from other states to develop a set of national priorities for the future of youth development. 4-H will present the national priorities to President George W. Bush and to Congress in April.

Washington State 4-H priorities are:
–The Power of Youth: Increase youth involvement in decision making related to youth program development and in governing groups.
–Access, Equity and Opportunity: Increase 4-H offerings such as summer activities, school enrichment, workforce preparation, Super Saturdays and family nights out.
–Extraordinary Places to Learn: Create or build youth/community centers and places where youth can gather and live and learn equally.
–Exceptional People, Innovative Practices: Create a coalition of those involved in youth activities and a youth council to work alongside adults for program development and implementation. These coalitions could also address substance abuse issues.
–Effective Organizational Systems: Increase the financial support from both traditional funding sources and from innovative new partnerships.

Washington State Delegates were:
–Erin “EB” Ball, daughter of Cheryl Mendenhall and David Ball, Snohomish.
–Crystal Bianchi, daughter of Zennea Bianchi, Renton.
–Gregory Bland, son of Catrina and Bryan Bland, Renton.
–Carris Booker, adult leader, Seattle.
–Pat BoyEs, adult leader, Puyallup.
–Janell “Chula” Bradshaw, daughter of Michelle and Bart Bradshaw, Ellensburg.
–Allyson Brooks, daughter of Katy Herbert, Ellensburg.
–Vicki Contini, adult leader, Richland.
–Cara Erickson, daughter of Doris and Dale Erickson, Hunters.
–Kendra Evans, daughter of Margaret and Ken Evans; Renton.
–Dianne Heath, adult leader, Kent.
–Arianne Howarth, daughter of Linda and Matthew Howarth, Elma.
–Stephanie Iverson, daughter of Cindy and Wayne Iverson, Gig Harbor.
–Cindy Iverson, adult leader, Gig Harbor.
–Anthony Judie, adult leader, Tacoma.
–Jasmine Maxwell, daughter of Mercedes and Chris Maxwell, Renton.
–Deborah Nistler, adult leader, Port Angeles.
–Thomas Power, adult leader, Pullman.
–Joanne Preston, adult leader, Colville.
–Thomas Rane, adult leader, Pullman.
–Sara Richerts, daughter of Susie and John Richerts, Sequim.
–Jonathon Somers, son of John Somers, Winlock.
–Jesse “Chip” Taylor, adult leader, Tacoma.
–Elizabeth Tennison Sr., adult leader, Renton.
–Jake Tennison, son of Elizabeth Tennison Jr., Renton.
–Crystal Terry, daughter of Linda and Dan Terry, Colville.
–Gretchen Walley, adult leader, Seattle.
–Melissa Walley, daughter of Gretchen and Don Walley, Seattle.
–Michelle “Shelly” Watts, daughter of Gayle and Dave Watts, Everett.
–Corey Whiteman, adult leader, Shelton.
–Jeanne Vosburgh, adult leader, Olympia.