Austin Roper (second from right, surrounded by local 4-H equestrian riders) recently received the Frank Graham 4-H service award along with a certificate for over 40 years of service.  

With over 50 years of experience in the equine industry, it is no wonder Austin Roper has found himself as a vital part of the Lincoln County 4-H Equine Project.

From providing a place to practice to hauling kids to local and state shows, Roper has touched the lives of many 4-H kids over two-plus decades.

Whether a child has shown up his or her entire career, or just getting started, Roper has always welcomed them as a part of his barn. He has been a constant staple at the horse show arena at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds, either at the gate reminding kids to have fun or at the trailer to help with a tack change.

He has selflessly provided an area, horses and tack to anyone who needs or wants to use them.

As long as kids keep providing Dr. Pepper and chocolate chip cookies, Roper will likely be found helping with the Lincoln County Equine Program.