Dr. Jerry and Rita Lahmers of Newcomerstown are winners of the 2023 Yvonne Lesicko Perseverance Prize for their innovative work on farmer mental health initiatives.Read More
Union County Farm Bureau member Roger Nicol said he felt “humbled” when he was asked to consider joining the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation Board of Directors a few years ago. Now in his second year of service to the foundation, the former organization director and human resources employee for the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation speaks about intentionally “paying it forward” through the work of the foundation.
Q: What made you decide to make your first gift to this organization and to continue giving?
A: Going back into the ‘80s, I was chairman of the Ohio Human Resources Council and we always had an annual conference and a keynote speaker for that conference. That year when I was chair was Woody Hayes, and Woody made a statement that “You can never pay back, but you can always pay forward.” And that always kind of stuck in my heart. It makes a lot of sense. Every year, my wife and I sit down and make an annual budget as to what our philanthropic giving is going to be. And for a number of years, we’ve always given to the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation, because it’s an organization that has a lot of integrity, and integrity to me means an awful lot.
Q: What is your favorite program or service that the foundation supports?
A: The one that sticks out to me the most is ExploreAg. I think we had about 100 young people, not all affiliated with ag (attend the high school summer camps in 2023). Agriculture certainly needs new, fresh recruits with 2% of the population only being farmers. There are more kids now with no knowledge of agriculture than there are with (knowledge). So, that Explore Ag program has opened the door for lots of opportunities for kids to look at a future in agriculture, which is going to be very bright.
Q: What do you hope to accomplish through your philanthropy?
A: I’m a firm believer in strong agriculture. Without strong agriculture, we would not have a strong economy throughout the state and throughout the nation. Farm Bureau is unique in that it serves at the local level, it serves at the state level and also at the national level. Through giving, that money goes towards programs that will help build the ag economy and provide work for youngsters in the future.
Q: If you were talking to someone else about giving to the foundation, what would you tell them?
A: I’ve always tried to choose philanthropic giving that brings value. Everyone loves a winner. Everyone loves successful programs.
The Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation is a winner, and we provide excellent programing to enhance not only Ohio agriculture, but enhance employment throughout the agricultural industry.
So thank you for considering the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation as a giving opportunity. We certainly do appreciate that.
Join Roger by making a gift today. You can support the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation by visiting ofbf.org/donate.
Giving Tuesday is Nov. 28
On Tuesday, Nov. 28, the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation will celebrate Giving Tuesday, a national day of philanthropy. The Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation is committed to inspiring innovation and cultivating investment in Ohio’s farm and food community. We believe young people in Ohio have the potential to grow their career in agriculture – that is why we need your help to grow our potential.
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I appreciate the benefit of having a strong voice in my corner. The extras that are included in membership are wonderful, but I'm a member because of the positive impact to my local and state agricultural communities.Strong communities
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.Leadership development
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.Young Ag Professionals program
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.Growing our Generation
Knowing that horticulture is under the agriculture umbrella and having Farm Bureau supporting horticulture like it does the rest of ag is very important.Groovy Plants Ranch
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.Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
When Christopher and Courtney Anderson asked to get married on a neighbor’s idyllic farm in Portage County, they were overjoyed…Read More
Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation board member Roger Nicol speaks about ‘paying it forward’ through the work of the foundation.Read More
A total of four grants were awarded to county Farm Bureaus in the amount of $5,000 each.Read More
The Yvonne Lesicko Perseverance Prize recognizes groups or individuals working to find innovative solutions to farmer mental health difficulties. Nominations are due July 31, 2023.Read More