Wisconsin 4-H Inducts Sauk County 4-H Founding Father into Hall of Fame

Dr. Walter L. Bible, a founder of 4-H in Sauk County, was inducted into the Wisconsin 4-H Youth Development Hall of Fame during a ceremony at Green Lake Conference Center on Saturday, Nov. 4.

“Each of the 2017 Wisconsin 4-H Hall of Fame laureates has transformed the lives of children and families with whom they’ve worked and the communities in which they’ve lived,” says John de Montmollin, interim co-program director of Wisconsin 4-H Youth Development, which is part of the University of Wisconsin Extension’s Cooperative Extension.

Dr. Walter L. Bible was a Lime Ridge dentist and dairy farmer who devoted his free time to the youth of Sauk County. “It was the pledge more than anything else which makes me realize the great value in carrying on and developing 4-H work,” Bible said. One youth recalled the Bible stressed the importance of discipline and taught them to conduct business meetings, but he also remembered the fun and adventure. His Lime Ridge 4-H Club made ice cream and took tours of farms and creameries.

Fun took a back seat to the primary purposes Bible had in 4-H — improving the abilities and opportunities of young people and improving the genetics of their herds. So he set about “filling farm boys’ minds, as well as the cavities in their teeth.” Bible also helped dairy project members arrange financing and guided them in selecting and raising their first purebred cattle. Bible also convinced the Sears-Roebuck Company to extend their Pig Project to Sauk County. Within the first 8 years, more than 100 4-H and FFA members received gilts from other members, a tradition that continued across the county.

Bible created a legacy through his work with 4-H youth and livestock projects. In recognition of his contributions, his 4-H club alumni spearheaded fundraising for the Bible cabin at Upham Woods. His commitment and vision have had an impact on Sauk County agriculture and youth programs that continues today.

The Wisconsin 4-H Hall of Fame was established to recognize 4-H volunteers, financial supporters, staff and pioneers who made major contributions to the 4-H movement at the local, state and national levels. The candidates represent 4-H in the broadest sense – people who had an impact on the lives of children, their community or state through significant contributions of time, energy or financial resources to 4-H and its members.

A list of the previous Wisconsin 4-H Hall of Fame laureates and all laureate bios is available at http://fyi.uwex.edu/wi4hhof/honorees/

The Hall of Fame ceremony and dinner were held during the annual Wisconsin 4-H Fall Forum weekend. Fall Forum is an opportunity for youth and adult leaders to attend a statewide training weekend with county and state staff to develop relationships, facilitate discussion between counties and provide an opportunity for youth and adult volunteers to be involved in the planning and evaluation of state programs.

Dr. Walter L. Bible, deceased, was inducted into the Wisconsin 4-H Hall of Fame on Nov. 4 at Green Lake Conference Center. Accepting the award on his behalf was Liz Cook (middle back row). Joining her were:


Presenting the award were (left to right back row) John de Montmillion and Julie Keown-Bomar, Wisconsin 4-H Interim Co-program Directors, Eva Huffaker, Liz Cook, Lora Hinz, and Leudtke and Adam Riley, Wisconsin 4-H Youth Council president and vice president, (left to right front row) Jasmine Shepherd, Alexsa Lemelin, Roza Kostandyan, and Michelle Kempfer.

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