Ohio Farm Bureau Federation has announced the impending retirement of Executive Vice President John C. (Jack) Fisher. The Ohio Farm Bureau board of trustees has begun its search for a successor, with the transition to new leadership expected in mid-2016.
Calling Fisher a “visionary leader,” OFBF President Steve Hirsch said the organization and Ohio agriculture have benefited greatly from Fisher’s management of the state’s largest and most influential food and farm organization.
“Ohio has become a national leader under Jack’s guidance. His insights into complex political, social and economic issues have allowed Ohio Farm Bureau to protect and advance the interests of our state’s largest and most important industry. We congratulate him on a stellar career and are deeply grateful for his service,” Hirsch said.
Hirsch announced that Ohio Farm Bureau First Vice President Frank Burkett III is chairing the search committee, which is composed of the board’s 10-member executive committee. The committee has retained an executive search firm to assist in the process. The board of trustees began its strategic planning for succession more than a year ago.
Fisher intends to remain active in other interests following his transition from Farm Bureau.
Fisher became Ohio Farm Bureau’s executive vice president in 1996. He previously served as deputy director and assistant director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture, director of the Illinois Corn Growers Association and Marketing Board, executive director of governmental affairs and commodities for Illinois Farm Bureau, and was plant manager for Wyandot, Inc.
He is a former member of the board of trustees at The Ohio State University. He now serves as a member of the Vice President’s Advisory Council for Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CFAES), participates in the Farm Foundation Round Table and Dialogue on Food and Agriculture in the 21st Century initiative, serves on the board of trustees for the Columbus 2020 Economic Development Board, and is co-chair of the CFAES Fundraising Campaign Planning and Fundraising Organization. He has served as a member of The Ohio State University Alumni Association board of directors, Ohio Farmland Preservation Task Force, Advisory Committee for the Swank Chair in Rural Urban Policy at The Ohio State University, the board of trustees for BioOhio and the board of directors for Children’s Hunger Alliance.
He has been inducted in the OSU Department of Animal Science Hall of Fame and was awarded the OSU College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Distinguished Service Award and Meritorious Service to Students award. He recently received the Dan L. Heinlen advocacy award from The Ohio State University Alumni Association. Fisher holds the FFA Honorary State Farmer Degree and was presented the national FFA Honorary American Farmer Degree.
Over the years, Fisher has participated in several international trade missions with both government and commodity interests. He grew up on a farm in Crawford County, Ohio. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agriculture from The Ohio State University and a master’s degree in counseling from Ball State University. He served in the United States Air Force.