Jason A Barr Why we celebrate Manchester man killed in single-car accident Adams County Election Results – 2017 Hubert Knauff To keep or not to keep Time again for the changing of the seasons November proclaimed as Adoption Recognition and Recruitment Month Local business is seven decades old and counting Local student gets Nashville call Senior Profile: Gabe Grooms Lady Indians fall in districts Quest For The Cup complete for Dragons Meeting a true sports hero WU’s McCarty named District Player of the Year With regional run, Pennywitt completes memorable career West Union eighth grade volleyball finishes as SHAC runner-up Senior Profile: Tray Brand Greyhounds drop home finale, finish at 4-6 Lady Devils fall in district semis Devils go down in district finals Matt Seas headed back to State XC Meet Senior Profile: Charlee Louden Lady Indians ousted in sectional final Lady Devils down Minford 4-1 in district semis North Adams volleyball claims fourth consecutive sectional crown Senior Profile: Brooklyn Howlett Afterschool fun begins at NAES Wearing it pink in October Kenneth L Austin Jay E Minnich Reuben E Hershberger Bobby L Williams 18 years just isn’t long enough Emotional, historic, and victorious Taking action against addiction Utilities commission approves DP&L electric security plan What matters and what doesn’t Oh dear, is that a deer? Junior Gaffin Charlotte J Thatcher Matthew D Miller Megan R Phillips Ralph M Swearingen Linda C Ackley Robert Ralston Shelly Seaman Increased access to treatment, Improving economic opportunity keys to combating Ohio’s Opioid Crisis Seas siblings are again SHAC Cross-Country Champions Lady Hounds cruise to sectional victory Senior Profile: Alyssa Hoskins 101 and another sectional championship Lady Indians claim sectional title North Adams tops Peebles for sectional soccer crown Senior Profile: Shay Boldman 13.5 seconds, heartbreak for West Union PHS JV Volleyball completes unbeaten season On the course that Nicklaus helped design On the ballot: Meigs Township Trustees West Union Christian Church will again be collection center for Operation Christmas Child Peebles voters will choose council members in upcoming election Seven candidates seek seats on ACOVSD school board A time for transformation What will future generations say? Finding all those treasures Janet K Campbell Robert D Hill Lady Devils blank West Union 7-0 in SHAC soccer finale Vikings invade and conquer the Greyhounds Outpouring of community support for local business woman with cancer Manchester mourns teen killed in single-car crash Kylie S Lucas Sharon R Grooms Steven L Wootten Forest J McDaniel Ralph O Grooms Adams County teenager dies in auto accident Charles N Vance Wesley M Baldwin James Kennedy Tom A Mihalovich Brand hat trick leads North Adams past West Union 5-2 in SHAC soccer action Senior Profile: Bryant Lung Lady Hounds pull off thrilling Senior Night win Volleyball milestones continue to pile up at North Adams Banner season for Lady Indians soccer SHAC holds Junior High Volleyball Tournament Tournament match ups set for volleyball and soccer Senior Profile: Morgan Edmisten Hounds dominate, improve to 3-4 Is this not the best time of the year? Volley For The Cure is another big success Getting everything we ask for Oh, that dreaded leaf project Manchester: Adams County’s oldest community looks to the future with hope Congressman visits Manchester’s newest business Six candidates vie for MLSD School Board Highway 41 road work stalls MFD holds annual Safety Day for kids, families Lenora Mckee

Carolyn Belczyk retiring from OSU Extension

After eight years working for 4-H in the Adams County OSU Extension Office, Carolyn Belczyk will be retiring at the end of this month.


After a 41-year career, focus will be on family and young people – 

By Patricia Beech – 

Carolyn Belzcyk’s last day as director of the Adams County Extension Office is July 31. She is retiring after 41 years of service – eight of which was spent at the Adams County OSU Extension Office.
Belczyk started her extension career as an Urban Agent in Erie County, Pennsylvania shortly after receiving her Bachelors Degree from Michigan State University.
Shortly thereafter she moved into the position of 4-H Coordinator/Educator for Erie County – a post she held for 27 years.
A former 4-H club member, Belczyk says being a 4-H educator always appealed to her.
“I was in 4-H in Geauga County, Ohio and from the outside looking in, I thought a 4-H educator’s job looked like a lot of fun.”
After nearly three decades in Erie County, Belczyk says she wanted to make a change.
“I went back to the two states I’d been interested in initially, Wisconsin and Ohio, because both have very strong extension programs and positive reputations in the extension community.”
She applied for and won a position in Wisconsin, but says the position was never a good fit for her.
“It was hard because my daughter was in Pittsburgh, my parents were in Chardon, Ohio where I grew up, and I was on the northwest side of Chicago in southern Wisconsin so I had to go through Chicago to get anywhere, it was like a barrier to my success and and I really hated the central time zone – I just never got used to it.
After four fairs she decided to make another move.
“I applied for a position in Ohio because it made sense at that point to move back closer to my parents in Chardon.”
She went to work in the Shelby County Extension Office, but budget crunches brought about by the 2008 recession forced reductions in the office staff, and suddenly her job was gone.
At that time Adams County’s commissioners were searching for someone to step into the county’s 4-H leadership role, a position that had been vacant for several years.
“For about two years before I came here there was no 4-H person at all,” says Belczyk. “The Ag Natural Resources Educator, who was also the County Extension director and the Family Consumer Sciences Educator each did a portion of 4-H, and then in the summer they hired someone to come in as a Summer Program Assistant.”
Belczyk says without a full time 4-H person the program had gone “off in its own direction”, and she now faced the task of bringing it back into compliance with state and federal policies.
“It’s not that anybody meant not to follow the regulations,” she says. “They just didn’t know what they were.”
Belczyk explains that every state’s 4-H program is different from others even though they share an emblem and a pledge in common.
“Fairs and camp are the two strong things 4-H offers in Ohio, or that people think of when they think of 4-H in Ohio, but 4-H is more than just the fair,” she says. “4-H is a leadership development program and a positive youth development program where kids work with a positive team and an adult role model to develop leadership skills and service learning skills. While 4-H is showcased at the fair and gives kids the opportunity to show off what they’ve accomplished, there are also a lot of other state and national activities for 4-H members, and those aren’t at our fair, they’re in Columbus or Washington DC, so I wanted to encourage kids and the entire program to think bigger than the fair.”
Belczyk says there several things she is proud of accomplishing during her years in Adams County. “Working and bonding with teenagers, and going to DC are very positive memories,” she says. “Our work with the Tech Wizards Program, and working with the Junior Fair Board for a common cause are very positive memories.”
After retiring, Belczyk plans to move to Pittsburgh to be near her daughter and grandchildren.
“She doesn’t have any family in the immediate area where she lives and neither does her husband, so they would appreciate it if I would retire and come live in the same community with them, and I’m looking forward to that move.”
She says she doesn’t know quite know whether retirement will be a good fit for her.
“Right now I get up in the morning with a sense of purpose, and when that suddenly stops on August 1 will I get out of bed and say ‘Now what?’. I’ve worked very hard for 41 years as an Extension Educator, and it’s more than a full time job, it is more than 40 hours a week,” she says. “I don’t know what it’s like to suddenly stop doing that, I mean no matter what I’m doing after that it has to leave kind of a void after 41 years. I like kids so I’m anticipating that when I go to Pittsburgh I will find either part-time work or volunteer work that has something to do with kids, I’m thinking there will be many opportunities.”
Without a doubt, the local 4-H youth will miss her leadership as evidenced by the numerous awards they have won during her time here in the county.
Commissioner Diane Ward said Belczyk’s work will have a lasting impact in Adams County.
“I commend Ms. Belczyk on her service and dedication to the 4-H program and OSU Extension in Adams County,” said Ward. “Her contributions have enabled our youth the opportunity to participate in a program that enriches their live, and I congratulate her on her many years of service and extend good wishes to her upon her retirement.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© The People's Defender - All rights reserved