Tensions of Farm Succession Webinar

Tensions of Farm Succession Webinar
Tuesday, February 22
3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET

For many farms, transferring the farm to a next generation is the ultimate legacy goal, especially when transferring within the family. But it’s not all rainbows and roses. Farmers focus on the technical details of transferring assets, much like machinery repair: if you put the right nut with the corresponding bolt … voila, you have a plan. But succession planning involves humans, with corresponding emotions. Research around farm succession has identified several “tensions” that can cause stress during the planning process. Those areas of tensions include:

  • Financial concerns
  • Control
  • Change
  • Inheritance distribution
  • Communication

If farm families/farm partners can identify their potential tensions and approach the plan with their tensions in mind, they can avoid some of the common “stalls” or pitfalls many farms face. This webinar will discuss these tensions and ideas on how to address them, including the value of a facilitator to help navigate potentially stressful but necessary conversations. Continue reading

Zoller Receives Top OSU Extension Ag Educator Award

Chris Zoller (l) is awarded the 2021 Steve D. Ruhl Outstanding ANR County Extension Educator Award by Sam Custer (r), Interim Director, OSU Extension ANR

Chris Zoller, Tuscarawas County Agricultural and Natural Resources Educator, has been awarded the Steve D. Ruhl Outstanding Agricultural and Natural Resources County Extension Educator for 2021. This honor is presented annually to the agricultural educator who shows exemplary leadership and dedication to his work on behalf of OSU Extension.

Nominated by his peers, Chris’ work on addressing farm stressors and mental health were often cited as examples of his leadership. He has presented at numerous in-services on the topic of farm stress and worked closely with the Rural and Farm Stress task force to break down the stigma of mental health issues on the farm. Continue reading

National Poll Shows COVID-19 Taking Heavy Toll on Farmers’ Mental Health

In a recent article from the American Farm Bureau, a strong majority of farmers/farmworkers say the pandemic has impacted their mental health. The article states that more than half say they are personally experiencing more mental health challenges than they were a year ago. This is all according to an American Farm Bureau poll.

The results of the new poll clearly demonstrate that the COVID-19 pandemic is having broad-ranging impacts among rural adults and farmers/farmworkers. Key findings include: Continue reading

Do You Get the Winter Blues?

By Bridget Britton Behavioral Health Field Specialist

Those that work in the agriculture industry know that it doesn’t matter the time of year, it is always busy. The Winter season is no different it just has its own unique demands. However, there may be other things going on in our bodies right now. During this time of year, many people often begin expressing a feeling of sadness or mild depression. Did you know that feeling sad during this time of year is very typical, and many people suffer from Seasonal Affect Disorder?

What is Seasonal Affect Disorder (SAD)?

  • A type of depression that typically lasts 4-5 months a year during the winter months
  • There are many different types of potential signs just to list a few:
    • Feeling sad, lonely, depressed for more than 2 weeks
    • Tired, sluggish, upset
    • Loss of appetite, having low energy, or thoughts of suicide.

Continue reading

Congratulations Jami Dellifield, ‘Y Prize’ Recipient!

Jami Dellifield, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator with OSU Extension in Hardin County, was honored and awarded at the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation Annual Banquet with the first ever Yvonne Lesicko Perseverance Prize, or Y Prize for short, for her innovative work on farmer mental health initiatives that brought together so many for the “Got Your Back” campaign.

“As the 2021 Y Prize award winner, Dellifield will be given a platform to share her work and the efforts of Ohio State University Extension for farm stress and mental health. Dellifield will be a presenter at the 2022 Young Ag Professionals Winter Leadership Experience. All of this is part of the award’s goal of lessening the stigma surrounding mental health issues.” Ohio Farm Bureau

See her interview here:

Observing An Attitude of Gratitude

By: Christine Gelley Originally written for Farm and Dairy’s All About Grazing Column.

November is upon us. The crispness of fall is in full glory. Hay season is subsiding. Grain harvest is moving along slowly. Even if the workload on the farm slows down after harvest, we still feel rushed as daylight fades earlier and earlier each day.


Everyone I talk to is waiting for a time when life will slow down, they can take a deep breath, and feel that feeling of accomplishment that the hard work has been worth the effort. That they’ve made it to where they want to be. If only we could feel a little of that feeling every day…


Come to think of it, what’s stopping us? Maybe observing a little more of an attitude of gratitude could help us through those days when the workload is too heavy, and the world is too hard. Taking a few minutes each day to appreciate the little things that blend into the canvas of the day may be just what we need. Continue reading

A Theme with YOU in Mind

The Collegiate Farm Bureau at The Ohio State University ( exists to support students engaged in agriculture and to develop future industry leaders. We are excited to share with you their apparel theme “The Farmer over the Farm.” This message emphasizes that “no matter what, the farmer and their well-being come first.” Show your support and help spread this message of positive mental health and wellness by purchasing a tee shirt, hoodie or sweatshirt today at: Shirts are available for kids too! Always remember, “a healthy farm or ranch is nothing without a healthy you” (Ohio Farm Bureau).

It’s Time to Break Down the Stigma

By: Bridget Britton, OSU Extension, Behavior Health Field Specialist

September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and with that comes the opportunity to raise awareness to help prevent even one more suicide from happening. When you live where you work the stress often never leaves a person’s mind. Unfortunately, people become overwhelmed to a point where they feel there is no other option besides suicide. For that exact reason it is important to talk about suicide, and how can we support those that are going through mental health challenges in order to prevent future suicide.

How is this affecting our community?

  • The agricultural community is 5 times more likely to die by suicide than any other population in the United States according to a CDC study published in 2017. Suicides are up by over 40% in the last 20 years according to this same study. Our farmers and foresters experience unique stressors that the average person can not even begin to understand. Whether it is related to health insurance, market prices, weather, or legal issues this all compounds into the daily lives of our ag community.
  • Farmers have easier access to lethal means in the way of guns and medication that has not been prescribed to them, allowing for suicide to be more obtainable.
  • We all struggle to talk about suicide and mental health. Though the conversations are happening they are still quiet. The stigma or fear of admitting a person needs support is still very real. Bringing this conversation out to the light allows for more open discussion.

Continue reading