The Harrison County Extension Agency paused on Monday to honor two individuals, who have contributed greatly to the success of the agency’s programs this year.

The first, Kate Herron, a sixth-grader in Waskom 4-H Club, was presented a plaque for her third place winning in the State Fair of Texas’ archery competition.

“Kate Herron is a prominent member of our Waskom 4-H Club,” said Jeff Stewart, club manager.

Stewart said Herron not only excels in archery, but also academically. He noted that within the last month, she has been awarded multiple University Interscholastic League (UIL) awards including: second place in UIL Museum Memory, third place in UIL Music Memory Team and third place UIL Ready Writing. She’s also on the A honor roll and is an outstanding low brass player in the sixth grade band, Stewart said. Additionally, Herron competed in UIL Chess and is a member of the student council at Waskom Middle School.

“We are so proud of her and all of her accomplishments,” said Stewart.

The UIL sponsor said Herron works hard at anything she does, always remaining humble.

“She is such a vital participant in our County 4-H organization,” he said. “She is a shining example of leadership and strength.”

The second individual recognized was Ruthie Smith as the extension agency’s Volunteer of the Year recipient.

“Ms. Ruthie is one of my master wellness volunteers,” said County Extension Agent Louraiseal McDonald.

Smith has been onboard for about five years, also serving on the Harrison Family and Consumer Sciences Committee and as secretary for the Harrison Child Welfare Board.

“She’s a volunteer that goes above and beyond to help me with all my programs,” said McDonald.

McDonald said Smith helps with anything from heart healthy wellness programs to 4H summer camp.

“You name it, she’s there,” said McDonald.

Pct. 2 County Commissioner Zephaniah Timmins echoed her sentiments, recalling how Smith eagerly responded to the call to volunteer.

“She’s just excelled at every level,” said Timmins.

A retiree from Marshall’s hospital, Timmins said Ruby hasn’t been idle.

“We just want to say thank you so much for standing up and answering the call,” he said.

McDonald additionally noted that she along with fellow county extension agent Matt Garrett has seen great success in with their programs this year. As family and consumer sciences agent, her programs have focused on health and wellness.

Garrett said his two major programs of interest were related to forage and water conservation.

For the forage, Garrett said they had six programs throughout the year. The estimated impact was more than half a million dollars generated from participants.

With the second major program, water conservation, their target is the youth.

“We’re trying to get into the schools, targeting third and fourth graders,” he said. “We’re currently scheduling for the latter part of January to get in the schools, setting up appointments with the different schools … with the goal of reaching 1,000 kids.”

“With that, we note that our programs are structured around volunteers and the things that they can bring to the table,” said Garrett.

County Judge Chad Sims said he’s especially thankful to the agents, volunteers and 4 H participants in the work they do for the Ag extension office.

“It is just such a great benefit for our community,” said Sims. “Y’all have the young folks and older folks — alike — involved.

“It’s so many good things and we’re grateful for all that you do,” he said.

He congratulated Herron on her state fair success.

“We’re expecting a lot more good things out of her,” said Sims. “We’re just grateful for what y’all are doing for our community.”