Kavanaugh takes over for Cline, who gets new role
FORT?DODGE – It’s been a time of transition for the Iowa State University Extension office in Fort Dodge.
After 20 years of serving as 4-H youth coordinator, Linda Cline has stepped down from that role and Lindsay Kavanaugh has taken over.
Kavanaugh, who previously worked for the Webster County Health Department as the community health coordinator, said this is the first time she has ever worked with 4-H.
“I really just enjoyed working with the kids,” Kavanaugh said of her previous job. “I thought this would be a great experience.”
She has numerous responsibilities within the Extension office.
“I’m working with all the 4-H programs, so I’m just working on recruitment of new members, organizing different events and activities for the youth,” she said, “and then as I mentioned just providing assistance to the clubs and families and then the volunteers.”
Kavanaugh said she also works to provide ongoing programs and workshops for all who are involved in 4-H.
So far, her transition into the office has gone well.
“Linda’s been a tremendous help and everyone’s been very welcoming,” she said. “Even community youth coordinators in different counties have been very welcoming and have already provided a great amount of information and resources for me as well.”
Partially helping her transition is the fact that, while Cline is no longer the youth coordinator, she is still working in the office.
Cline recently became the 4-H county program coordinator.
Her responsibilities include developing, marketing and coordinating the county’s Extension education program. She also serves as a liaison between the county Extension office and various community groups.
In some ways, Cline said there are similarities between her two positions.
“It would be in the same format where we’re working with different people in the community and I get to work with adults in setting programs that the youth program specialists are working on,” Cline said. “So those are different people that I might have worked with in the past and just getting to know what their programs are and to find what fits into our community and in our county, not only just Fort Dodge but in the smaller towns, too.”
She added that she will also help determine how those towns can be supported through education and workshop opportunities.
Cline said she also believes the transition has gone well.
“We want Lindsay to succeed in 4-H, so I’ve been helping her find things in the office and to help her to know who the 4-H family is and to build those relationships,” she said.
Both Cline and Kavanaugh said they enjoy working for the 4-H program in Webster County.
“I can go and look at our 4-H alumni and I get notes from those 4-H alumni thanking the 4-H program for their communication skills, their leadership skills that they have taken nto the communities they live in now and use them or maybe use them in their new job,” Cline said. “They’re not afraid to go to interviews because they’ve been through interviews here. They’ve learned those communication skills.”
“It’s such a great opportunity for them and these skills they’ll take with them the rest of their life,” Kavanaugh said. “I hope to keep spreading the word and getting more and more kids involved because it really is such a great opportunity.”
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