2006 4-H Leader of the Year: Siana Wineland

Jefferson County 4-H is proud to present Siana Wineland as 4-H Leader of the Year for Jefferson County. Siana earned the coveted title through her committed work with the Golden Clovers 4-H goat club, as well as her extensive leadership with the Jefferson County Fair Association. As part of this honor, she was presented with a 4-H clover medal this summer at the Jefferson County Fair. The irony was that Siana was unable to attend the award ceremony because she was giving birth to her and her husband Chas' first child, Raine. Siana shared with a laugh, "We knew Raine might be born during the fair schedule and now our family will always have a personal celebration of his birthday during fair." Siana's 4-H friends thought that even though Raine was the biggest prize of all, Siana deserved to "have it all" by also being 4-H Leader of the Year.

As a youth Siana was in 4-H for 10 years in Monroe, Snohomish County- she pursued projects in rabbits, cavies and performing arts and was an avid square dancer. Siana raised cavies when the Monroe Fairgrounds' cavie barn was being designed and built. She was thrilled as a child to be part of that planning and design process.

Siana's first experience working with youth came when she became a summer camp counselor in high school. She supervised and guided youth who were in the 5th and 6th grades. Siana laughed when she stated, "It's funny now when I looks back on it and remember some of the antics the high school counselors pulled, because when I was in 5th grade I thought the high school counselors were just like adults."

Siana came to Jefferson County with her husband, Chas. After they started their farm, they began hosting foster children for the summers. Siana and two of the children took their first three baby goats to the Jefferson County Fair. Siana and the children took one animal each so that they could easily handle the goats and learn how to show at fair through the Open Class procedures. Later Siana and her husband became the barn superintendents for small livestock in Jefferson County. They had always intended to start a 4-H club when they had their own children, but there was a real need for 4-H activities within the livestock barns at fair. And so, Siana started the Golden Clovers goat club in 2000. Golden Clovers was the name of her club when she was a youth so she brought the name with her.

Siana says she has no idea why she is so devoted to being a 4-H club leader. She knows she likes the activities. She says, "It's great to watch the kids learn to do things by themselves. This year the club is getting big enough that the youth are starting to take more responsibility and run the club more." Siana believes in the value of youth working with animals. She explains, "It brings out a lot about responsibility - with an animal you have to make a strong commitment - you can't just drop it. If you do, you have to find a home for that animal. Life and death cycles are a reality in animal projects - the kids see the real world and where food really comes from." Siana love parades. She used to do parades as a youth and as a square dancer. It was always fun. She participated in marching band, too. Not surprisingly then, Siana usually leads the Jefferson County Fair Board parade entry for the local Port Townsend Rhody Parade.

Siana realizes as she reflects on the way she was raised in 4-H that one important aspect of what she now teaches is the striving for individual excellence over simply "winning." Her club members know the importance of doing their personal best and valuing that highly, even if they might not win a competition. Her biggest pride is the growth that she has seen in her club members related to handling things at County Fair or State Fair. They bring their animals in properly, encourage each other when they are struggling, go out of their way to help others in their county team and support youth outside their county when they see someone in need. They show compassion during competition and go out of their way to help others succeed, even their own competitors. Seeing this positive and generous attitude in her club members makes all the work she does in 4-H worthwhile.

Siana received the biggest prize of all this year as she gave birth to her and Chas' first and long-awaited child, Rainey. We fellow 4-H-ers feel so happy for Siana that we thought she deserved to "have it all." We are celebrating along with her