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The Faces of Iowa 4-H: Mike Anderson

Name: Mike Anderson

Current Position: Campus 4-H Livestock Program Specialist

Hometown: Family Farm in Garner, Iowa

Education: Undergraduate degree in Animal Science from Iowa State University. Master’s in Animal Science from Iowa State University.

Past Work Experiences:

Biotronics – Ames, Iowa as a Beef Ultrasound Lab Manager

Purdue Extension – West Lafayette, Indiana as a 4-H Youth Educator, Decatur County

Hobbies/Interests: Spending time with his wife and daughter, visiting home and helping with cattle shows, and playing sports such as basketball and golf.

Ultimate Goal in 4-H: To make things simpler for families and kids to get involved and join 4-H. Also, to provide more opportunities for kids in urban areas to be more involved with animals.

When I interviewed Mike it was pretty evident to me that he had been involved with 4-H his whole life. He grew up on a farm with three older siblings and was very involved with his family’s cattle operation. He was in 4-H and FFA throughout his school career.

Mike really loves his job and he told me, “I really enjoy the fact that I get to work with the livestock industry. I grew up around it, know a lot about it, and it is my passion.” One of Mike’s goals is to increase enrollment within the livestock program. He wants to see more kids get involved no matter where they live! Mike’s job is to manage livestock events and activities, and one of the biggest events is at the State Fair. There are usually about 2,000 participants showing their livestock and 250 volunteers. The State Fair is an exciting time and it gives kids the opportunity to gain responsibility, leadership skills and communicating skills!

While talking with Mike I learned a lot of things I didn’t know. It was interesting to hear about all of the hard work that goes in to each event and how much time is spent preparing. There are so many requirements and steps that need to be taken, but when it is all put together the outcome is really rewarding!

What does 4-H mean to Mike?

It means an experience that teaches so many life skills making friends along the way!

Erika Pletcher


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