Ohio Farm Bureau President Frank Burkett III welcomed delegates to the 99th annual meeting with an opening address that both inspired and challenged the members gathered in Columbus in December.

One of the biggest changes facing the organization involves the sale of memberships. Burkett encouraged members attending the meeting to think beyond memberships for other sources of income.

“We own membership,” Burkett said, noting that Nationwide is no longer selling Farm Bureau memberships. “‘We’ means you and I as members, and our amazing staff. These changes allow us to concentrate on our core while retaining and engaging supporting members in our surrounding communities.”

Nationwide remains Farm Bureau’s most important partner, Burkett said. Nationwide will continue to offer numerous benefits to Farm Bureau’s active members.

Burkett highlighted several accomplishments of Farm Bureau over the past year, including policy wins such as legislative reform to the Current Agricultural Use Value formula which saves landowners 30 percent more on average, and American Farm Bureau’s seven Counties of Excellence Award winners from Ohio.

He also touched on Farm Bureau’s strategic plan, which will guide the organization through 2020 and beyond.

“I am confident as we approach the celebration of our centennial next year, our strategic plan will position your Farm Bureau to serve generations to come and the communities you surround.”

Having opportunities to attend leadership institutes, advocate for rural Ohioans on the state and national level, facilitate young ag professionals events, and serve in a variety of leadership positions have helped my skills grow exponentially.
Sara Tallmadge's avatar
Sara Tallmadge

Ashland County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Business Solutions
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
I was gifted the great opportunity through an Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation Youth Pathways grant to run a series of summer camps here. That really expanded my vision of what ‘grow, maintain, sustain and explain’ could actually be.
Jim Bruner's avatar
Jim Bruner

Mezzacello Urban Farms

Farming for Good
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

Advocacy
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