Rock Rapids Man Inducted into Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame

Des Moines, Iowa — A Rock Rapids man has been honored for his contributions to 4H in Lyon County and the State of Iowa.

According to Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Lyon County Youth Coordinator Jill Postma, Alvin Smidstra of Rock Rapids was inducted into the 2022 Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame during a ceremony at the 4-H Exhibits Building at the Iowa State Fair recently. Ninety-eight Iowa counties participated this year and selected 133 inductees for their outstanding service and dedication to 4-H. Inductees or their surviving family members were presented a certificate by the Iowa 4 H Foundation President, Julie McGonegle and State 4-H Program Leader, Debbie Nistler, as they were introduced on stage.

Extension officials tell us Smidstra’s interest in 4-H began about the time his son started attending 4-H. Smidstra was a 4-H leader for six years in the 1990s. He served on the 4-H youth committee for six years and then started helping with the 4-H and FFA dairy show at the Lyon County Fair in 1991 on which he later became dairy superintendent. His dedication to the 4-H program brought him to the fair board in 1999. They tell us that through Smidstra’s efforts, a new state-of-the-art show ring was constructed in Lyon County. They say Smidstra has always been there to care for the youth of Lyon County. The extension officials tell us, “Whenever something needed to be done, you could count on his dedication and commitment to the kids to see that it was taken care of as soon as possible.”

Postma says that counties select inductees based on their exceptional work in contributing to the lives of 4-H members and the overall 4-H program.

The Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame was initiated in 2002 to help commemorate the 100th anniversary of 4-H. A summary of previous honorees was on display at the 2022 Iowa State Fair in the 4-H Exhibits Building. These summaries are also available at the Iowa 4-H Foundation office in the Extension 4-H Youth Building at Iowa State University. Information about previous inductees to the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame is available on the Iowa 4-H Foundation website, organized by year and by county. Go to and select “Recognition” then “Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame.”



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