August 8, 2019
Buddy and Lisa Edenburn were honored as the 2019 Advisors of the Year, July 11, during the 2019 VitaFerm® Junior National Hereford Expo (JNHE) in Denver.
They have advised the Illinois Junior Hereford Association (IJHA) for more than a decade and have been involved in the IJHA for a number of years, having raised their daughters, Bailey and Miranda, in the program.
Current IJHA president and recently elected National Junior Hereford Association (NJHA) director Noah Benedict, Dewey, Ill., has been mentored by the Edenburns and speaks highly of their devotion to Illinois juniors and their families. He highlights the couple’s tireless efforts to ensure youth have the best experience possible while exhibiting their Hereford cattle.
“They not only do this as individuals, but as a team,” Benedict says. “They provide one of the best examples of what a couple should look like. Their willingness to cooperate with each other and how they handle tough situations is textbook.”
Traditionally one of the largest state junior associations, these Illinois advisors arrive to JNHE a day earlier than most families in order to mark stalls and prepare for the week.
“Buddy organizes the entire stalling chart each year. Last year, he went through 14 different stalling maps in order to make sure each junior’s family had their requests met,” Benedict says.
Over the years, the couple has developed 10 new scholarships, contests and programs within the IJHA program, and take these competitions just as seriously at JNHE.
“Lisa runs and organizes most of the contests at the Illinois Preview Show,” Benedict shares. “She spends her entire week at junior nationals making sure she is present at every contest an Illinois junior competes in and she makes sure she watches each of our juniors go through the show ring at least once.”
Benedict adds that Buddy and Lisa are positive role models to everyone they come in contact with and always handle themselves with grace, dignity and respect.
To the Edenburns, working together just comes naturally.
“We’ve been married for 30 years,” Buddy says. “It’s just natural to work together. We both have our duties and know how to take care of them.”
With a humble attitude and kind hearts, both Buddy and Lisa exemplify what it means to be advisors, made all the more evident by their appreciation for the award.
“Lisa and I have been blessed to serve such a great group of kids and we love them all,” Buddy says. “The kids are why we do what we do, and we just hope to provide them a helping hand along the way.”