Ohio Farm Bureau and Nationwide have a history built on cooperation. Nationwide was founded by Ohio farmers who believed in working together for their community. Today, we continue a strong partnership based on this belief.
Tell us about the place where you live. My family lives in Okeana, a small community located in Morgan Township in Butler County and our office is in Ross, which is only eight miles away. My farm background comes from working on my aunt and uncle’s dairy farm. Saturday was always my farm day. Even after I got married, I would continue to go to the farm on Saturdays to help out with whatever needed done.
Why are you a Nationwide agent? My uncle was a good mentor and a good sounding board. I could ask different business questions, and he would give guidance. I’m an insurance agent because of my uncle. We were milking cows one evening, and he told me to check out insurance.
Working with Farm Bureau: One of the primary ways I work with Farm Bureau is my support for Russ Beckner and his Southwestern Ohio Chapter of Farm Safety for Just Kids (FS4JK). Russ and his family are 18-year policyholders of mine and he has been with Nationwide Insurance for 57 years or more. Russ is a retired engineer from Procter & Gamble. He became aware of the Farm Safety for Just Kids program through a family friend. He has grandkids and has read about farm accidents involving children. Russ started the local chapter in 2010 and got it up and running. He has been a true success at it. He and I work together at the county Farm Bureau’s Stricker’s Grove event, a free evening for Farm Bureau members to enjoy having fun and fellowship, rides, putt putt golf and food. I am there promoting Nationwide and Russ is promoting Farm Safety for Just Kids. Russ sets up at open houses at local tractor dealerships and a number of programs to share the safety message, and I’m part of his financial backing. Other businesses support him, too: Watson Gravel, Koenig Equipment, Zimmer Tractor, Butler Rural Electric, and Jeff Hahn with a grain elevator association in northwest Ohio.
As a sponsor to FS4JK, we help provide information for Russ such as loss control material that includes Power Take Off safety brochures and farm safety brochures provided by Nationwide Agribusiness and our agency.
In the past, my agency also sponsored Butler and surrounding county Farm Bureaus’ workers’ compensation safety programs. My wife Becky prepared the food for some of these events. We also held a “Land as Your Legacy” estate planning program. And this August, along with the Hamilton County Farm Bureau, we’re having an Equine Seminar showcasing the potential liability exposures and the Nationwide insurance products available for equine owners.
How important is community involvement to your agency? I like doing business with farmers and other community members. My relationship with Farm Bureau is just part of my giving back. I believe in what they’re doing in preserving farms and promoting farms. There’s a lot of pressure on farmers today, and Farm Bureau is their buffer. Farm Bureau is a farmer’s safety net.
Besides Farm Bureau, I’ve served in the past on our church finance committee and parish council and many other local organizations in our community. I’m currently on the zoning commission for Morgan Township.
What does customer focused mean to you? I’ve always believed in taking care of customers. We are not a 1-800-Who-Cares insurance agency. We are a customer care agency that lives, works and worships in the area we do business in. When disaster has happened, I have been there to do what I can to help our customers. The biggest thing I love about what I do is meeting people, talking to and working with them. I still do business the old fashioned way by making house calls and evening appointments. One of the ways I can do this is doing “On Your Side reviews” with my clients and working with Farm Bureau and meeting new members.
To tell us about a Nationwide agent who contributes to your community, e-mail: [email protected]