On any given day, conversations with Greensburg , La. native Angela Myles can veer from excitement about the young 4-H club members she mentors to worry about the unkept community garden tucked away at St. Helena College and Career Academy and closed for the summer. If you stick around her for a while, the talk moves from one of her nine Godchildren and church VBS plans to a lively discussion on the extraordinary cattle and goats roaming small farms throughout St. Helena parish and the teenage farmers preparing to compete in the next statewide livestock show or cookery competition.
In fact, Myles’ conversations are much like her smile and personality: broad, bright, and full of energy. The 34-year-old extension parish chair supervisor for the LSU Ag Center is working passionately in agriculture–a career many people expected to be replaced by machines and technology. And she’s using the national 4-H model to teach it to a new generation along with lessons on nutrition, technology, rockets, and leadership.
A self-described farm girl, Myles said she wanted to go to the military but instead earned two degrees from Southern University in agriculture family consumer science and in education leadership. She now plans specialize in youth development and earn a doctorate in education leadership.
This summer she is teaching a STEM camp, taking a group of preteen 4-H’ers camping in Polluck, La., and traveling to Baton Rouge with high schoolers who will attend the 4-HU’s Clover College and compete in ATV, computer simulation, and forestry challenges.
“I love what I do,” said Myles who started her 10-year career at the Southern University Ag Center and the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service as a parent educator then as a youth specialist.
“My church is where I started being a leader for my community. I would like to thank the late Rev. Stanley J. Carter for his leadership and helping to mold me into the person I am today. I have to tell all of my parents in St. Helena Parish thank you for trusting me with your child and helping me to make this a great program a success for your child and their family,” she said. For that, she is a woman to watch.
Meet Angela Myles, 34
Professional title: Parish Chair and associate extension 4-H Agent St. Helena Parish with the LSU Ag Center
Hometown: Greensburg, LA
Moves made in 2014: Reached out to youth in areas of, 4-H youth development through livestock, club meetings, Jr. Leader Club, cookery contests, nutrition, gardening, camps, character development, reading literacy projects, STEM projects, and reaching youth through and in schools.
What to expect from you Expect for youth in St. Helena Parish to live by the 4-H slogan “To Make the Best Better”. We will attend 4-H camp, 4-H U at LSU, STEM Summer Camp, Louisiana Outdoor Skills and Technology (LOST) Camp, Challenge Camp, 4-H club meetings, robotics club meetings, livestock meetings, and character development.
Personal Resolution: To read a new book every other week with an emphasis on learning about different cultures, beliefs, histories and technologies. Develop and maintain website for different companies. Donate to a needy organization in the state of Louisiana whether if it’s items, money, or time.
Professional Resolution: Seek more professional development from the LSU Ag Center.
Life/business motto: LSU Ag Center Mission Statement: to innovate, to educated and to improve lives. My personal motto is to have a “The sky’s the Limit” approach to life. Never be afraid to dream big and do bigger, you know that you can do anything you set your mind to.
What music are you dancing to? Gospel, I love to give God praise through singing and dancing!
What are you reading? The Spirit of Leadership by Myles Munroe 7 Habits of Effective Leaders by Steven Coyey, and The Gift of Imperfection by Brene Brown.
Mentors or Role Models: My mother Mary E. Hickerson was my role model until her death in 1990. My other role model was my adoptive mother Margaret P. Overton until her death in 2013. At this point in life, I look up to my oldest sister, Cynthia, for support and advice. I have developed to become my own role model and I consider myself to be a role model to many youth in my community and across the state of Louisiana.