Marilyn Wickert is retiring from the Starke County Extension Office, having served 16 years in the office. She also served two years in the 1970s where she served as the first full-time Youth Educator in the County.
Marilyn was asked what she enjoyed most while working at the Extension Office.
“Working with people, especially with the Junior Leaders,” she said. “That was my measure of success was in seeing these young people grow and reach their potential. Many of them come back to the program. At 4-H Council the other night, out of the probably 12 or 14 that were there, seven of them I actually had in 4-H at some time, whether it was recently or back when I was here in the 1970s.”
She will still volunteer in the office.
“Until they get a new educator, I’m going to go ahead and continue to work with the Junior Leaders and possibly 4-H camp because that does involve the Junior Leaders.”
Marilyn was asked what she will be doing in her retirement.
“We put up a greenhouse last year and started growing and selling chemical-free vegetables and we’re going to expand to some flowers and do more with that. I’ll continue on some of the Board that I’m on as a member of the community because I really believe in this community and what we can do to better it. And exciting news for us, we’re expecting our first grandchild in April.”
She has this advice for 4-H members, “To the 4-Hers and the adults involved, this program runs because of volunteers and we have great volunteers. You get the most out of any program if you are part of it. I would say to the parents that it’s a good program to get your kids involved with, they’ll learn a lot, they’ll have fun, and have opportunities for trips and scholarships. Appreciate those volunteers, be they on the 4-H Council, The Extension Board or the Fair Board, appreciate them and let them know that.”
Monday, January 31st will be her last day. A celebration in honor of Marilyn will be held on Monday from 5:00-8:00 p.m. CT in the Knox High School Cafeteria. The public is welcome to wish her well in her retirement.