Three individuals were recognized for their lifetime achievements to agriculture during the 101st annual meeting of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation. Long-time Nationwide leader Steve Rasmussen received the Ezra C. Anstaett Heritage Award while farmer Tom Price of Delaware County was honored with the Distinguished Service Award. OFBF Sr. Director of Corporate Communications Joe Cornely received the Agricultural Communicator Award, the second time he has been honored with the award. Farm Bureau volunteers, county organizations and state leaders nominated candidates for the awards.

Rasmussen has been a long-time supporter of Ohio Farm Bureau and the agricultural community. He recently retired as CEO of Nationwide after being elected to the position in 2009. He also served on Nationwide’s board of trustees. Previously, he was president and chief operating officer of Nationwide’s property and casualty insurance operations, Allied Insurance and CalFarm Insurance, an affiliated company with Nationwide. Currently, Rasmussen serves on the boards of Nationwide Children’s Hospital, American Electric Power and Catalyst. He also is a member of the Columbus Partnership, an organization focused on economic development and downtown Columbus revitalization. Previously, he was a board member of OhioHealth, the National Urban League, the Insurance Information Institute, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the Columbus Metropolitan Library. He and his wife, Cindy, served as co-chairs of the 2012 United Way of Central Ohio campaign.

Price, a Delaware County Farm Bureau member, is a sixth-generation farmer who has a hog, cattle and compost business. He volunteers in many capacities statewide, including as a member of the Ohio Expositions Commission and the Ohio Soil and Water Conservation Commission. He also has served on the Delaware Area Chamber of Commerce, Delaware Community Foundation, Ohio Pork Industry Strategic Planning Committee, Ohio Beef Council, Ohio State University Extension Advisory Committee and Delaware County Farmland Preservation Task Force. He is a member of the Ohio Agricultural Hall of Fame and the Delaware County Agricultural Hall of Fame. He and his family have received numerous accolades, including the Ohio Conservation Farm Family Award, Ohio Cattlemen’s Environmental Stewardship Award and Ohio Pork Producers’ Service Award. 

Cornely first received the Agricultural Communicator Award for his work as a long-time farm broadcaster at WRFD where he produced Farm Bureau’s “As We See It” weekly radio program. In 1996 he was voted National Farm Broadcaster of the Year. He was very active in the National Association of Farm Broadcasting and was president in 1995. In 1998, Cornely joined Ohio Farm Bureau as director of media relations and is retiring at the end of the year as senior director of corporate communications. He has received national communications and service awards, including from the Soil and Water Conservation Society, American Soybean Association, National Association of Conservation Districts and National Corn Growers Association. He also has received numerous awards from Ohio farm organizations, including the Ohio Corn Growers, Ohio Soybean Association, Ohio Cattlemen’s Association, Ohio Pork Council, Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Ohio Agri-Women and Ohio Veterinary Medical Association.

This is a news release for use by journalists. Questions should be directed to Ty Higgins, 614-246-8231. 

Editors: High-resolution photos of Mr. Rassmusen, Mr. Price and Mr. Cornely are available to accompany this story.

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

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