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10 Celebrities You Didn’t Know Were In 4-H

What do you think of when you think of 4-H? Cows and pigs and county fairs? Think again. Today's 4-H reaches young people from urban neighborhoods, suburban streets, and rural farmlands, empowering them for life and for careers in STEM fields, agriculture, and healthy living. In fact, 4-H has been able to enrich nearly 6 million lives for more than 100 years. Check out these 10 celebrity 4-H alumni and read how the program has impacted their lives. You may be surprised to see some of these celebs and how they were involved!

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1. AUBREY PLAZA

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youtube.com / Via 4-H YouTube

The Parks and Recreations star, Aubrey Plaza, spent 8 years of her childhood involved in 4-H, and attributes the program to her confidence and leadership skills. She has given back to the 4-H community by volunteering to be a camp counselor and teaching a movie-making class.

2. CRAIG MELVIN

NBCNews.com / Via nbcnews.com

MSNBC Anchor and NBC News Correspondent, Craig Melvin, participated in 4-H in his hometown of Columbia, South Carolina, where a journalist came to speak to his club. He credits that experience for exposing him to journalism in his early years. Today, Craig enjoys contributing to organizations that support the development of the youth and continues to show his support of 4-H, paying it forward when he provided a job shadow experience for a 4-Her with aspirations to get into broadcasting.

3. PEGGY WHITSON

Twitter / Via Twitter: @AstroPeggy

As a shy girl growing up in Iowa, Peggy Whitson dreamed of becoming an astronaut when she first saw Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walk on the moon at age 9. To achieve her dream, Peggy joined 4-H to build confidence and learn public speaking by presenting at local 4-H club meetings as well as state-wide events. Today, Peggy is a record-setting astronaut who shares her inspirational story with the next generation of 4-H’ers and encourages them to dream big.

5. ERIC STONESTREET

Twitter / Via Twitter: @ericstonestreet

Emmy award-winning Modern Family star Eric Stonestreet grew up on his family’s farm in Kansas. He was president of his local 4-H club, where he raised livestock and learned public speaking, leadership as well as other life skills. Eric continues to speak out about his 4-H experience and inspire youth to get involved in 4-H.

6. KEVIN RICHARDSON

Instagram / Via instagram.com

Before his Backstreet Boys fame, Kevin Richardson grew up in Kentucky, where he joined 4-H. Kevin and his cousin, Brian Littrell, sang at local and state fairs before forming the Backstreeet Boys.

7. JENNIFER NETTLES

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youtube.com / Via 4-H YouTube

Jennifer joined the local 4-H club in fifth grade in her home state of Georgia and credits their local performing arts troupe, Clovers and Co., with helping her achieve her dream career. Now, as the organization’s national spokesperson, Nettles shares her story and brings awareness to all that 4-H offers, from science and agriculture, to performing arts, healthy living, and more.

8. JORDY NELSON

Bleacher Report / Via bleacherreport.com

Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Jordy Nelson joined 4-H when he was growing up on his family’s farm in Kansas. The Superbowl winner attributes his success in the NFL to life lessons he learned on the farm-- from discipline to accountability and hard work. Nelson still returns to the family farm during the off-season where he works up to 12 hours a day to cut wheat and raise cattle.

9. CARLA HALL

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youtube.com / Via 4-H YouTube

Carla Hall, an American chef, and co-host of The Chew, attributes many of the skills that have helped her in her personal and professional life, such as being adventuresome and open to trying new things, to her experience with 4-H. To give back to the 4-H community, she mentored a 4-H member to show how she uses the values and skills from 4-H in her role as a chef and television host. Watch the video clip to see “A Day in the Life” with Carla Hall.

10. NANCY GRACE

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youtube.com / Via 4-H YouTube

“If you have access to 4-H, take advantage of that.” – Nancy Grace, television journalist

The 4-H program was a family affair for Nancy Grace, as her grandmother and mother were both active members during their youth. She later become a counselor at Rock Eagle National 4-H Center, giving back to the Georgia community that taught her many valuable life lessons.

There are plenty of reasons for these celebrities and other alumni to thank 4-H for the opportunities, life lessons, and values instilled in their lives. Find a 4-H program near you and get involved!

Bayer and National 4 H Council have created Science Matters – a program that will address the need for enhanced STEM education and help foster a love of scientific exploration in students across the country. Science Matters is designed to equip at least 25,000 students with the tools they need to deepen their understanding of science. Learn more about Science Matters today.

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