4-H Leadership Opportunities for Youth and Adults

Key members | Ambassadors | Alumni | Volunteer leaders | Key leaders


4‑H aims to help youth members and adult leaders realize their potential. Programs, projects and opportunities challenge members to be assertive, to make decisions and to facilitate change. The goal is to encourage members to see themselves for who they are - active, audible and accountable leaders of tomorrow. 4‑H Leaders of today act as mentors, making an example out of their life, their conduct and their interactions with others. In this, Leaders not only see the development and change taking root in the lives of the members, but they have the affirmation of knowing that they encouraged the change to happen, willed the confidence to ignite and imparted the tools necessary to make a difference.

Imagine being a part of something that you believe in, and gave you cause to believe.

Key Members

Key Member Challenge

  • The first Key Member Challenge was to design a magnet that could be distributed throughout the province to go on lockers of 4-H members that would create awareness of November being National 4-H month, and the November 4th ‘Show Your Colours’ day.  Members at training were able to vote on their winning design.  The following was the winner design that was created by Alex Kathol of Wheatland District.

  • The next Key Member Challenge asked all key members to contact their local paper to do a story on 4-H, on them as a key member, or for the key member to write an article and submit it.  Once the article appears in the paper they are to clip it out and send it to the 4-H office in Vermilion to be entered in a draw for a prize and points toward the “Challenge” title.  Articles can be submitted up to midnight on November 30, 2010.  Winner of this challenge was Cara Noble of Mackenzie River district.

  • For Key Member Challenge #3 the members were given posters, postcards and a supply of 30 magnets to spread around and promote 4-H awareness month.  Once the supplies have been distributed they are to send me a list of how the distribution took place.  Winner of this challenge was Adriane Good of the Newell district.
  • Key Member Challenge #4 put on your creative hats and design the new key member logo by February 15, 2010. 

This is what last years was and we did cell phone charms and Frisbees as promotional items with this logo on them.  The logo can not have to much fine detail or it won’t reprint or screen well.


  •  Key Member Challenge #5 over the course of the next few months you should be approached or approaching clubs in your district to do workshops or help to arrange events on a variety of topics.  In your binder you were provided a few sheets to help prepare and evaluate such activities.  To achieve this challenge you must submit the “Facilitator’s Workshop Evaluation” or “Presenters Checklist /Agenda” or any other worksheet from with the resource binder that you felt assisted you in preparing for your chosen event. If you have not done the "activity or event" by the deadline, it is okay to submit the planning documents for it.  Deadline for submission is March 31, 2010.
  • Key Member Challenge #6 - Read carefully -
    • You need to get a local postcard, from your town or somewhere within your 4-H district.
    • Think about a member that stands out in your district as a potential key member.
    • Write a note to that member explaining why you think the district would benefit from them becoming a Key Member.
    • Give that card to the member with my return address on it, and ask the member to sign their name and send it in to me.
    • You can give out as many cards as you wish.  I will enter your name in the draw for the number of cards we get to the office.
    • Postcards will need to be postmarked April 30, 2010.


The call is out for new Key Members check out the Invitation for 4-H Members to join Key Members | Resume Resources

Deadlines vary in each region, please check with the 4-H Specialist in your region for more information.


PowerPoint Presentations available for Key Members to use:

Key Members are Senior Members aged 15-20 who have set themselves apart through their initiative, leadership and maturity. The Key Member program was established to increase and ensure the successful exchange of information between club members, leaders, district councils and their surrounding community. By acting as a liaison between these various groups, Key Members enhance and develop their leadership skills in a less intimidating environment, provide beneficial support to volunteer leaders and club members, and allow for the efficient exchange of information.

Each district selects one Key Member based on a resume and interview; larger districts may select a maximum of 2 Key Members. In most districts, applicant's cover letter and resume are due at the appropriate regional office by the end of March. The successful applicant serve on-year terms, with the option of reapplying and being rechosen. Being that Key Members are chosen at a district level, their responsibilities will consist of club and district level activities and events. Key Members are encouraged to use other Key Members, leaders, 4‑H staff and community partners as resources for valuable information and skills to assist them in their role. Key Members are strongly encouraged to attend the Key Member training weekend in mid-August in order to meet the crew of newly named Key Members, to become knowledgeable in the ways of the organization, to devise strategies for the upcoming year and to talk out any questions and fears that might exist, and to have a blast.

A Key Member's responsibility will change from task-to-task. From organizing and facilitating workshops to acting as a liaison between club members and council to assisting club members with record books to organizing events with Key Leaders to serving as a resource for the 4‑H community, the role of a Key Member is never dull. Key Members must make themselves known to clubs, volunteers, leaders, Key Leaders, etc., be accessible and willing to attend/plan events, and effectively budget their time (balance between family, school, work, personal time, etc.).

If you would like more information on becoming a Key Member, contact the 4‑H specialist in your region.

Key Members





















Ambassadors are Senior Members' aged 15-20 who have demonstrated the markings of a leader. Ambassadors represent the epitome of 4‑H with their willingness to participate, the articulation with which they speak and the knowledge that they impart. Ambassadors' impeccable behaviour, dedication and enthusiasm are evident at the Regional and Provincial events where they volunteer. They are resourceful and knowledgeable in many aspects of the 4‑H program.

At Selections, Ambassadors are chosen among those who place in the top half of attendees based on diary points, quiz scores and overall group session performance.


Fourteen Ambassadors are announced at the annual Selections program to serve a two-year term beginning in May, acting as a role model for 4‑H youth and acting as a representative for 4‑H at a Regional and Provincial level. Ambassadors attend an annual training weekend, held at the Provincial 4‑H Centre to help prepare them for their duty as role models to junior, intermediate and peer 4‑H members.

Ambassadors' main activities include:

  • presentations that promote provincial 4‑H programs
  • sponsor acknowledgement and thank-you
  • arranging displays at major events
  • presentations at Provincial 4‑H Leaders Conference
  • arranging Cleaver appearances (parades, hospitals, rallies, etc.)
  • writing articles for the Alberta 4‑H Magazine
  • interviews and media-related opportunities to promote 4‑H
  • participating in the Partners in Marketing Committee
  • creating/ facilitating/ programming fun activities for the Ambassador group
  • participating in presentation ceremonies at provincial events
  • participating in mainly regional and provincial events

If you would like more information on becoming an Ambassador, contact the 4‑H specialist in your region.


4‑H Alumni play an important role in the 4‑H structure. Alumni are previous 4‑H members aged 18 and older, whose past club experience makes their participation as public speaking judges, workshop presenters and chaperones in the current 4‑H program, invaluable. Having progressed through the various projects and programs, Alumni often find themselves too old to join 4‑H or too far to drive to meetings as they have moved away because of school or work.  

Alberta 4‑H Alumni has five active clubs in the province: Grande Prairie, Northwest, West Central, Calgary and South with each club aspiring for monthly meetings, as well as educational, social and charitable activities to 4‑H and the local community. Each alumni club is responsible for its governing, activity planning and member recruitment. Clubs communicate with their area's Regional Specialist as they provide region-specific guidance and direction.

Alumni groups are typically centered around post-secondary institutions. They are normally started in an attempt to keep former 4‑H members connected, further develop leadership and communication, and act as a resource for all Alberta clubs and members. Aside from the community that is created, being a 4‑H Alumni club member also presents opportunity. Alumni are still able to apply for scholarships, volunteer for events or become club leaders and network with 4‑H sponsors.

In order to coordinate Alumni activities on a provincial basis, the positions of Provincial Alumni Coordinator and Assistant Coordinator work as a team with each of the five clubs on behalf of the alumni in the province. Each alumni club is expected to send at least two delegates to the Alumni Annual General Meeting in January, where the positions of Coordinator and Assistant Coordinator are elected. The group also discusses initiatives, plans, activities and successes.

If you would like more information on a specific Alumni club or on starting a new club, contact the 4‑H specialist in your region.


Volunteer Leaders

Leader Programs
Leaders are adults aged 18 and over who dedicate their time to creating an environment of learning, developing a relationship of trust and encouraging a drive to succeed. They work toward the further development of youth and have a particular interest/expertise that is applicable to 4‑H's projects and programming. Typically, Leaders are elected by a 4‑H club's members at their reorganization meeting in the fall and serve a one-year term. 4‑H insists on Leaders meeting specific requirements due to 4‑H's commitment to fostering an environment that is conducive to safety, growth and learning

After being elected, each Volunteer Leader must complete the following requirements:

  • Completion of the 4‑H Leader Application Form
  • Submission of 3 references
  • Criminal Record Check
  • Successful completion of Level 1 Leader Training or the Online Leader Quiz

The fundamental expectation of a Leader is to be a mentor to club members, modeling the roles of a mediator, a facilitator and a coach. As a mediator, a Leader strives for effective conflict resolution, active listening and impartiality. As a facilitator, a Leader creates an environment that promotes learning and productivity, safety and trust, motivation and dedication. As a coach, a Leader is understanding, positive, communicative, flexible/adaptable and is able to recognize the needs of club members, and be a strategic thinker.

As a Leader, the different roles, activities, situations, and experiences you encounter and gain will be endless. Organizing fundraisers, planning and facilitating club Achievement Days, facilitating workshops that are beneficial to members as well as leaders, attending Leader Programs, Provincial 4‑H Leaders Conference, project update conferences, taking part in travel and chaperone opportunities, planning events at club meetings that have "added value", setting up projects that cater to club members specific needs, strengths and interests to name a few. Being a 4‑H Leader is meant to be as fun, as self-developing, as rewarding and as challenging as each individual aspires to make it be.

If you would like more information on becoming a Leader, contact the 4‑H specialist in your region.

Key Leaders

Key Leaders are an integral part of the 4‑H structure. As a result of their previous 4‑H volunteer Leader experience, Key Leaders are versed in the ways of club conduct, the needs of the club, the structure of the 4‑H program and the resources that exist within the club, district and community. Key Leaders prove to be an excellent resource for newly founded clubs and newly selected club Leaders, by providing training on 4‑H procedures, meeting management and 4‑H related programs and make themselves accessible to those needing assistance. Key Leaders ensure that they make themselves known to the district, and have the knowledge to serve as a resource to clubs, committees and councils.

Due to their well-developed leadership characteristics, exemplary service and previous 4‑H Leader experience, Key Leaders are selected by District Council on an annual basis to act as a support to district and committees. The term is for one year with the option of renewal depending on the district. Key Leaders are encouraged to attend 4-H Alberta Leader Programs such as the Provincial 4‑H Leaders Conference and Key Leader Training.

Through their years of experience, Key Leaders have developed effective approaches for successful means of recruiting and involving volunteers and helpful tactics for mentoring volunteer leaders. Acting as a liaison between club, district and various committees is an important element of being a Key Leader, as is cooperating with Key Members in order to plan events, activities, and workshops. Key Leaders assume the responsibility of helping volunteer leaders with trying situations, listening to the feedback and concerns of leaders and council and assisting the exchange of information between these two groups.

If you would like more information on becoming a Key Leader, contact the 4‑H specialist in your region or Janet Kerr.