Jonathan and Alyssa Zucker

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With 2024 right around the corner, it is time to start thinking about how you will get involved and make a difference in the organizations you are passionate about. 

Jonathan and Alyssa Zucker from Marion County tell us how they worked to earn the opportunity to represent Ohio by serving on the American Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee.

How did you get your start in Farm Bureau? 

My, (Jonathan) grandma was involved in the county Farm Bureau and served as a trustee at the state level. It is in my blood. In 2016, I was asked to join the county board. Alyssa and I got married and she quickly became involved as well, and the rest is history. 

Describe your Farm Bureau involvement

Jonathan and Alyssa Zucker, American Farm BureauOur path started with the county board, and then we got invited to participate in the local Young Ag Professionals group. From the county board, I (Jonathan) became the policy chair and served as an annual meeting delegate, went through the AgriPOWER program and had the opportunity to advocate for Ohio farmers in Washington, D.C and Ag Day at the Capital. Through the networking and connections of those opportunities, we were able to serve on the State YAP Committee and which led us to our most recent accomplishment of serving on the AFBF Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee. 

What made you want to keep getting more involved? 

The community. We like to say that Ohio Farm Bureau is community. We have a passion to serve our community both locally and nationally.  As our professional careers began to develop, we realized the invaluable impact that Ohio Farm Bureau has on ag policy that directly affects our operation and we wanted to be part of it. 

What advice would you give someone looking to get involved?

Always say “yes” when you are able to say yes. Ohio Farm Bureau will always provide opportunities and we have been fortunate to be in a position to say yes. 

What has been your most rewarding experience within your Farm Bureau experience thus far?

Zuckers annual meeting delegates
We served as delegates at the 2023 Ohio Farm Bureau annual meeting.

We are very proud of how our State YAP Committee came together to execute the Winter Leadership Experience that was held at Kalahari in 2023. Planning a conference with Covid-19 still lingering presented its challenges, but the team came together and pulled off a very successful conference. One thing we were able to bring back from our time at the Young Farmers & Ranchers Fusion Conference was making the conference family friendly. Childcare is not always easy to come by and we were proud to be able to support our members while building leadership skills and networking with industry professionals. 

We prioritize our life by the four F’s: Faith, Family, Farming and Farm Bureau. Ohio Farm Bureau is a grassroots organization that exists to protect our family and farms but it all starts with us, the next generation of agriculturalists. We have to prioritize saying yes to those opportunities that give us a seat at the table for Ohio agriculture. In the new year, we invite you to say yes with us and find your place in Ohio Farm Bureau. A great way to begin is at the 2024 Winter Leadership Experience. See you there!  

Contact your local Farm Bureau to learn more about getting involved. 

Involvement opportunities
  • Local YAP groups 
  • County Farm Bureau boards 
  • Annual meeting policy delegate 
  • Ag Literacy Certification volunteer 
  • AgriPOWER 
  • Collegiate Farm Bureau 
  • State YAP Committee 
  • AFBF YF&R Conference 
  • Ag Day at the Capital 
  • Washington, D.C Leadership Experience 
  • Winter Leadership Experience 
  • YAP competitive events (Discussion Meet, Excellence in Agriculture, Outstanding Young Farmer) 
  • AFBF YF&R National Committee 
  • Ohio Farm Bureau Board of Trustees
Upcoming deadlines

Winter Leadership Experience (Jan. 26-27, Columbus). Register by Jan. 10.

American Farm Bureau YF&R Conference scholarship applications due Jan. 15, 2024 at midnight. Apply

Ag Literacy Volunteer Certification Training – Feb 9. Register

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

Farm Labor Resources
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.
Ernie Welch's avatar
Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

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.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

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.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

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.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

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.
Jared Hughes's avatar
Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

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.
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

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