County 4-H Extension Educator Jen Matosky
is brand new in town – she just arrived
on Wednesday and on Friday morning, met
with 4-Hers bringing their lambs and dog to
the Sublette Center for a little pet parade.
Next is the 4-H Jackpot Livestock Show
at the Sublette County Fairgrounds and,
of course, the Sublette County Fair itself
– Matosky has already contacted fair organizer
Kailey Barlow. Her biggest concern
right now is how to get to know 4-H leaders,
members and livestock while dealing with
the COVID-19 restrictions in place at this
time. Statewide 4-H activities were locked
down from March 19 through May 15 and
planning programs and events will require
“It is different,” she said of possibly
planning a meet-and-greet via Zoom rather
than in person. “We have to tread lightly
with coronavirus; I want to call the leaders
and introduce myself. Maybe we’ll do it in
person later on.”
Matosky was an equine 4-H club member
growing up in Douglassville, Penn., not
that far from Philadelphia. But that does not
mean she isn’t prepared for this slightly remote
and western outpost of western Wyoming.
For starters, Matosky chose to attend the
University of Wyoming after her family visited
an uncle who lived nearby. She graduated
in 2017 with a degree in Agriculture
Business and Animal Science.
“I thought ‘no way,’” she said of UW.
“But loved it when I visited there. It was a
good fit for me. I got most of my experience
with livestock at UW. I absolutely loved it.”
The College of Ag offers a wealth of
hands-on experience and the tuition was
very affordable for an out-of-state student,
she added. “I learned a lot in a short amount
And she made a lot of friends – Matosky
has a close friend in Kemmerer who lives
on a ranch. Another works with the Uinta
County 4-H Extension Office, who grew
up in Jackson and attended UW with her.
That’s how she first learned about this position
in Sublette County.
After graduation, Matosky had moved
back to be near her family and her 4-H position
before this one likely prepared her for
just about anything.
“Most recently I was the 4-H and Agriculture
Program associate in the least populated
county in Virginia, Highland County,”
she said. “There are 2,000 people in the
whole county. I had to drive an hour and a
half to get to the grocery store.”
Matosky worked a lot in the Highland
County schools on anything with an agricultural
purpose. She helped local cattle association
members vaccinate for the state’s
One of her first official duties is to join 4-Hers Callie Windbigler, left, with her
lamb Brett Young and Cadin Windbigler, with her lamb Jake Owens at the
Sublette Center on Friday morning. In back, from left, are Sara Windbigler
with Buster Brown, Megan Smith and Jen Matosky.
Joy Ufford photos
UW graduate Jen Matosky, who arrived last week, is excited to be Sublette County’s new 4-H Extension educator.
Beef Quality Assurance program and with
the local sheep association’s “wool pull.”
She taught electrical projects and worked in
the school garden and with 4-H camps.
Although she was closer to her family,
her parents are traveling more and Matosky
grew a little homesick for wide-open
spaces. So she decided to apply for the Sublette
“I missed the West, I missed the people,”
she said. “I just enjoy it out here – I’ve met
some of my favorite people out here.”
Matosky said she can see how important
having an active, vibrant 4-H program is to
the people in and around Sublette County.
“You can tell the community really
backs this 4-H program; you could see that
throughout the interview process,” she said.
“There are a lot of good resources here. I’m
young, I’m pretty energetic and I am really
willing to work.””
She is determined to be “mindful” of
finding efficiencies, getting feedback and
focusing on leaders and members.
“You have to find what motivates each
person and hone in on that,” she said of
building the relationships needed to keep
the program growing. The range specialist
position might be opening soon so she
and office manager Megan Smith will have
company in the building south of town.
Matosky loves to fly-fish, so she looks
New 4-H educator finds ‘all the civilization’ she needs
By Joy Ufford, [email protected]
forward to seeing more country. She also is
an avid quilter and was excited to see Heritage
“It’s a good mix of everything and covers
a lot of my interests – and it’s pretty, of
course,” she said of the county. “And I love
the Pinedale slogan – ‘All the civilization
Asked if she was informed in the interview
process that the nearest Wal-Mart is
100 miles away, Matosky laughed. “I knew
that one coming in but I’m used to that now
so it doesn’t bother me.
“But – I can get my groceries here now!”