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John P. Miller Receives 2015 Carolyn Blum Memorial Award

Posted: May 11, 2015

Miller was recognized with the PA Poultry Youth Service Award at the Youth Poultry 101 Conference on May 2.
John P. Miller, left, accepts the 2015 Carolyn Blum Memorial Poultry Youth Service Award from J. Phillip Clauer, Extension Specialist, 4-H Youth and Small Specialty Flock Poultry Programs.  Miller is from Bethlehem, Northampton County.

John P. Miller, left, accepts the 2015 Carolyn Blum Memorial Poultry Youth Service Award from J. Phillip Clauer, Extension Specialist, 4-H Youth and Small Specialty Flock Poultry Programs. Miller is from Bethlehem, Northampton County.

Northampton County's John P. Miller, Bethlehem, received the 2015 Carolyn Blum Memorial Pennsylvania Poultry Service Youth Award at the annual Youth Poultry 101 Conference held at the University Park Campus on May 2nd. He leads the County's embryology program and has been a leader of the 4-H Livestock Club since 1985.

In 1997 he began teaching the embryology program in Northampton County, now in 20 schools and reaching thousands of students over the years of the project. He contributed to writing the 4-H Embryology Member's Guide and is a certified poultry technician for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Miller also volunteers to 4-H youth to be sure they have appropriate blood work done to exhibit their poultry projects at fairs.

The award is presented annually by Penn State's Department of Animal Science to recognize adults who have given outstanding service to youth poultry programs in Pennsylvania. First awarded in 2009, the award is now named in memory of the first recipient, Carolyn Blum, Montgomery County, who died unexpectedly three years ago.

Miller was nominated by Sherry S. Roth-Eyre, whose letter read, in part, "As he stands in front of the children doing what he loves, you can see the love pour out of him as he teaches the children about the hatching of the chicks...he is never willing to leave a school until he has answered every question a student or teacher has...It has been such a privilege to learn from John."

Michelle Gifford, second grade teacher at Paxinosa Elementary School, Easton, wrote, "Mr. Miller is sure to explain things to my students in a way that they understand. He truly loves what he does with our students, and it shows. My students really enjoy seeing him and learning about the life cycle of the chicken. It is because of him that I have continued to do this amazing project with my class and hope to continue in the future."

Eleven-year-old Daniel Eyre wrote, "Mr. Miller taught me about embryology when I was in third grade. I still have my own chickens and I love them. Thank you Mr. Miller for teaching me and helping me."

Phillip Clauer, Penn State Extension Poultry Specialist, said, "John has demonstrated exceptional leadership with the poultry program in Northampton County. He generates enthusiasm for poultry with the hundreds of young people with whom he interacts each year. He is a shining example of the spirit of the Carolyn Blum Memorial Award."

Miller has also helped with other educational poultry programs including "High Feathered Flight" and "Talking to T.J." He has served on Northampton County's Program Development Board and on the Show and Sale Committee. He has been recognized by the Bethlehem Area School District for more than one million hours of community service from 1990 - 2008.