Kris Weiser

We started session four with Stephan Shehy and Evan Callicoat, learning about their roles in the policy process with the Ohio Farm Bureau. They took us through the process of how policies are developed and introduced and how they go about lobbying for the policy. Next we met with the OFBF policy team to learn about current issues in the Statehouse, and there are lots of interesting policies going on.

Then we were off to the Statehouse to meet with a panel of government leaders including Sen. Tim Schaffer, Sen. Paula Hicks-Hudson and Rep. Mary Lightbody. We had an opportunity to speak with each, learn a little about their backgrounds, and why they take such an interest in farming. Several sit on committees that have a vested interest in agriculture and they are proud to be working toward a better future for all. As we took a small break, I had a little time to explore and let me say that if you ever have a chance to make it to the Statehouse, go. The architecture is something to behold. After a nice lunch in the State Room, it was time for me to introduce Attorney General David Yost and what an honor. After learning of his journey that led him to become attorney general, we had the chance to ask questions and learn about what it is to be in that seat.

After our visit to the Statehouse, we walked to the Ohio Supreme Court building and let me just say this is another building one should see if given the chance. We took a lovely tour that ended in the Library. Back downstairs, we had the pleasure of meeting with Justice Sharon Kennedy. She has an outstanding story of her beginnings in the justice system from police officer to Ohio Supreme Court Justice. It is fascinating to learn the workings of the court and the history of the court.

Day two of the session proved to be just as informative as the first. We enjoyed the first part of the morning learning about local government positions from Leah Curtis with Ohio Farm Bureau, then we had the pleasure of meeting the mayor of Plain City, Ohio Jody Carney. Mayor Carney explained the complexities of being the mayor for a small village just on the cusp of a major city while still being a farming community. To end the session we were able to tour the Ohio Department of Agriculture which I didn’t realize had a hand in everything from the foods we eat, to helping fight animal diseases, to weights and measures. I had an amazing time with some amazing and accomplished people that I would not have had the pleasure of meeting if not for AgriPOWER and the Ohio Farm Bureau.

I'm eternally grateful for the support Ohio Farm Bureau scholarships provided in helping me turn my dreams into reality.
Bethany Starlin's avatar
Bethany Starlin

Hocking County Farm Bureau

Available scholarships
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
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton 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
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
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
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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