McClanahan Selected to Receive 4-H Emerald Clover Award

GRUNDY, VA (JANUARY 28, 2020) — Appalachian School of Law Dean, Justice (ret.) Elizabeth McClanahan, will be recognized with the Virginia 4-H Emerald Clover Award February 5 during the Virginia 4-H Foundation “An Evening with Virginia 4-H” event in Richmond at the Dominion Energy Center.

The Emerald Clover Award is presented annually to an individual for outstanding and sustained commitment to “Making the Best Better” for the youth of Virginia.

McClanahan is a 4-H alumni-member, who served in a variety of 4-H capacities from her time as a youth member when she participated in 4-H Camp; All-Star 4-H Congress and Share-the-Fun, to her leadership roles in the organization as an adult. She was a community club leader while at William & Mary; served as 4-H Foundation president; and SWVA 4-H Center board member and public relations chair; and as a member of the Virginia Tech Cooperative Extension/Agricultural Experiment Station Self-Study Advisory Group.

“The 4-H Motto ‘To Make the Best Better’ has inspired and motivated me since the day I first became a member,” McClanahan said. “For a young girl growing up in Buchanan County, the opportunities for camping, leadership and travel were solely in the 4-H club.

“My first exposure to students from other parts of the Commonwealth, a talent competition, extracurricular activities, speaking contests, a major university (Virginia Tech) — all came through 4-H,” she continued. “The experiences clearly showed me there was a community out there that included my country and my world and I could connect with and be a part of them.”

McClanahan recognized two of her youth leaders in Buchanan County for the impact they have had on her life — Brenda Ward, who was her counselor and cabin leader during 4-H summer camp in elementary school; and Louise Carmichael, who was the Buchanan County 4-H program director at the time she was involved in the program as a youth member.

“I am still inspired by Brenda Ward’s grace, kindness, thoughtfulness and willingness to always be a ‘worker-bee,’ as well as a community leader,” McClanahan said.

She credited Carmichael for keeping things moving and remembered her as “always energetic and constantly creating youth opportunities.”

“Both of those ladies were a force,” McClanahan said

In addition to the naming of McClanahan as the Emerald Clover Award recipient, the February 5 event will also celebrate the accomplishments of outstanding 4-H members in the areas of agriculture, health living, civic engagement and science, technology, engineering; and math. The contributions of 4-H supporters will also be recognized and those in attendance will also have an opportunity to learn about current innovative 4-H programs.


Media Contact: Cathy St. Clair – 276.202.0383 or

Posted February 13th 2021 Posted by Brian Presley