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Buckeye Farm News
Gene Phillips, Knox County
For more than 50 years, Gene Phillips has been a Knox County Farm Bureau member and remains an active volunteer today.
“I made up my mind that when I graduated from college that I was going to join and I did,” said Phillips, who lives in Mount Vernon.
Phillips took over the family dairy business until he sold it in 1994. He is now retired but busy as ever with 11 grandchildren. He and his wife, Diana, have been married 48 years and have five adult children.
He has been chairman of membership for Knox County Farm Bureau for the past six years and is currently a Clinton Township trustee. He also was county commissioner from 1963 to 1970. Phillips is a graduate of Cornell University with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture with an emphasis on dairy.
“I have enjoyed it,” Phillips said of being a Farm Bureau volunteer. “It’s not as hard as I thought it would be. Farm Bureau is sort of a protection institution that has helped us do many things. Farm Bureau supports a lot of things and that shows with its Outstanding Young Farmer being a mushroom farmer. Farm Bureau supports all types of agriculture.”
Amy Hurst, Public Policy Department executive assistant
Amy Hurst is starting her eighth year with Ohio Farm Bureau and is presently the Public Policy Department’s executive assistant. She provides administrative support not only for the department but for the Ohio Livestock Coalition. She started in 2001 as executive assistant for the Ag Ecology Department.
Previously Hurst was an administrative assistant for the College of Food, Ag and Environmental Services Office of Recruitment at Ohio State University and administrative assistant for the Champaign County Farm Bureau office and Champaign Landmark. She also worked as an elementary aide for Mechanicsburg Exempted Village Schools and as assistant farm manager with the family farming operation. She graduated from Sinclair Community College with an associate’s degree in applied science with a major in legal assisting.
Hurst grew up on a farm and when she got married, she helped her husband with their grain crop and livestock production operation. She lives in Mechanicsburg and has a daughter, son, daughter-in-law and grandson. She has been involved in Champaign County 4-H where she was an adviser for 13 years and served on its executive committee for three years. She is also an active Champaign County Farm Bureau volunteer and Faith Mission volunteer.
“Farm Bureau members are great volunteers who are always there to help promote agriculture in a minute’s notice, giving up a part of their lives to help accomplish a goal,” she said. “I work for Farm Bureau because it is fulfilling to help other people and who better to help than the agriculture producers who provide us with so much for so little.”