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y e a r s

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O k l a h o m a

F a r m

B u r e a u

Building future OUR

by Clarissa Walton

Oklahoma Farm Bureau From the 1990s into the 21st century

On the heels of a decade filled with legislative wins, Oklahoma Farm Bureau began the 1990s with new vigor. Humbled by the dedication and support of its members for 50 years, the organization embraced the magnitude and importance of its presence both in the legislature and in the public view.

Members First

he early 1990s brought milestones for Oklahoma Farm Bureau as the organization focused on member T benefits and programs to enhance the value of becoming

an OKFB member, in an effort to encourage active participation at the county, state and national levels. In 1992, members received newly-designed FB membership cards that could be used for benefits through exclusive arrangements with a wide variety of businesses throughout Oklahoma, including restaurants, tire and service centers, pharmaceutical networks, entertainment, eyewear, motels, rental cars, parking, tax preparation, pest control and more. In addition to these member benefits, OKFB also focused on new programs and activities through its departments and organizations. The OKFB Young Farmers & Ranchers began regularly holding livestock judging and speech contests. Farm Bureau Safety Services added a fire safety trailer to their curriculum to show youth how to safely escape a burning building.

1991 | OKFB's 50th anniversary

In 1998, OKFB launched the “Members First” campaign designed to instill in the members confidence in the direction of the organization and to focus on providing the highest quality of programs and service to members. With the campaign came several efforts to provide better insurance products, open additional claim offices, increase advertising and public relations, and offer loans to help county Farm Bureaus improve their image with a face lift to facilities, new buildings, signage and parking. These efforts led to OKFB’s costshare satellite office program, which offered counties financial assistance to open new satellite offices to better reach their members. In September 1998, Adair County became the state’s first to use the program to build a new satellite office. Growth of the organization was evident with the first all-county membership gain recorded in 1992, and OKFB membership reached 100,000 for the first time in 1993. With 10 consecutive years of growth in 1999, OKFB won the first of many American Farm Bureau Federation President’s Awards with gold stars in all 12 program areas.

1992 | First all-county membership gain

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For the first time in OKFB history, each Farm Bureau county reports membership growth for the year.

1990

1992 1991 | State Fair LIvestock Judging Contest Begins

14 — Oklahoma Country

OKFB YF&R holds their first statewide livestock judging contest at the Oklahoma State Fair.

1994

1993 | Merklin elected pr

Merklin, a Woodward Coun farmer-rancher, is elected a fifth OKFB president.

Oklahoma Country - Fall 2017