Alumni Spotlight – Paul Hall
Posted: May 20, 2016
By: Paige Hart
Paul Hall is no stranger to the 4-H world, having been involved for over the past 50 years. He is currently an entrepreneur with businesses in insurance, financial services, and car rentals.
Paul first got his start in a Pendleton County community club. His mother was a homemaker, so naturally supported the first chance to get involved with 4-H. As a budding 4-H member, Paul loved doing projects that where hands on and quickly got involved with electric projects, talent shows, gardening and entomology. He has fond memories singing at the state fair, where he jokes, “This was long before Garth Brooks and we could have showed him up, we had it all: lights, costumes and backdrops.” Growing up in the 4-H program, Paul got involved with leadership and was later elected the 1975-1976 State 4-H President.
In 1976, State Teen Council (STC) was chartered. However, it was met with much debate and logistical problems to overcome. History was made by stepping out, supporting the chartering of STC, and having strong enough faith in youth to support the future of youth development. Paul saw the potential STC had and fought for its future. In September the first meeting was held in Falmouth, with the Pendleton County 4-H Council sponsoring the cost, Paul’s home county. Fayette County 4-H Council covered the November meeting, and set a precedent for other counties to help support the council in the founding years.
The main purpose of STC was to help plan and facilitate 4-H Week, by traveling to areas to promote and plan engaging opportunities that attracted teens. Today, STC still holds its values and main purpose of congregating youth to provide leadership, establish statewide connections and friendships, and foster a growing passion for 4-H. The biggest difference he sees in STC currently is the formation of new boards to accompany STC, which gives youth more opportunity to get involved at a higher level of leadership.
Paul believes in the importance of paying it forward, saying, “It’s important to give back, to give youth the advantage or even a better advantage than what was offered when you were involved.” The revamping of the current achievement program is one of his proudest accomplishments. Paul was instrumental in creating a program that had a competitive aspect that created healthy competition among participants, along with finding the funding associated with the scholarships for winners and finalizing the details to make it all possible.
Paul met his wife, Jill, in 4-H, who was the State Treasurer in 1978, so naturally their children were involved with 4-H. Both he and his wife were head advisers for a community club in Ohio 4-H. He also serves as a judge, Kentucky 4-H Foundation Board Member and in other ways when he is needed. The biggest thing Paul takes from 4-H are the lasting friendships. “When you look back on life, truly who are your friends? Well they would be the 40+ year friends that you made while on State Teen Council and from your 4-H years. Friendships go through everything, with time passing and yet reconnecting and being able to pick up exactly where you left years ago.”
Paul is excited to attend this year’s upcoming Homecoming to see past members and recognize the chartering of STC. Paul and the Kentucky 4-H Foundation Board hope that you will make plans to attend this year’s Homecoming on June 11th.