CHEVY CHASE, Md. — Dr. Eddie L. Locklear of Lumberton was inducted into the National 4-H Hall of Fame on Friday for his lifetime achievements and contributions to the organization.
Honored by the National 4-H Council, Locklear is among 16 people inducted during the ceremony at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase.
The National 4-H Hall of Fame honorees are nominated by their home states, National 4-H Council, the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents or 4-H National Headquarters, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture based upon their leadership and commitment to 4-H, according to a statement announcing the inductees.
Honorees received a National 4-H Hall of Fame medallion, plaque and memory book during the ceremony.
“We are proud to acknowledge the outstanding 2016 National 4-H Hall of Fame honorees for the passion, dedication, vision and leadership they’ve shown toward our young people during their many years of service to 4-H,” said Jeannette Rea Keywood, National 4-H Hall of Fame committee chair.
In his 24 year career in Extension and 4-H Youth Development at North Carolina State University and then as National 4-H Council’s Director of Mission to Market for nine years, Locklear had a vision for 4-H that included reaching new audiences and positioning 4-H as the premier positive youth development organization and solution for pressing issues, such as science literacy and career readiness.
Throughout his career, Locklear worked to make his vision for 4-H a reality by pioneering, resourcing and scaling program models in areas where 4-H is now recognized as a leader, the statement said. As the director of the National 4-H After-school Program, Locklear led the initiative’s national launch, opening the door for after-school programs nationally to use 4-H program materials.
Locklear focused on science with a goal of inspiring one million new scientists. Locklear partnered with 4-H National Headquarters, USDA and NIFA, as well as with state and county 4-H programs nationwide to launch 4-H Science.
The initiative included state-specific science plans of action with growth targets for the number of youth reached, a nationwide network of 4-H professionals who would serve as 4-H science liaisons in every state and an annual Science Academy. Under Locklear’s leadership, 4-H Science received $40 million in support from donors such as the Noyce Foundation, Toyota, Cargill and others. More than one million youth were engaged in 4-H science programming.
Locklear developed a national model for mentoring that was then funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, resulting in more $41 million in support for 4-H to date. The 4-H National Mentoring Program brought 4-H to some of America’s most economically disadvantaged communities and thousands of young people.
As part of this effort, Locklear also developed a Tribal 4-H Advisory Council, resulting in funding specifically for tribal communities.
“Dr. Eddie Locklear’s forward-thinking approach to program development, quality and evaluation led national movements in after-school, STEM and mentoring for the 4-H organization,” said Jill Bramble, National 4-H Council’s senior vice president for Resource Development. “Known as an authentic collaborator and partner, Eddie is highly respected by his peers in youth development, national leaders in out-of-school time and corporate donors. Most importantly, he is champion for youth and was a mentor to all of us who were fortunate enough to work with him.”