U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs (OH-7) has been presented with the American Soybean Association's (ASA) "Soy Champion Award.' The Award, which is given biannually, is presented to Members of Congress who demonstrate outstanding advocacy for soybean farmers and soybean-related issues on Capitol Hill.
Mr. Danny Murphy, ASA President, said, "ASA is proud to recognize Congressman Gibbs as a Soy Champion for his outstanding advocacy on behalf of soybean farmers. His work on waterways and regulatory issues, as well as on the farm bill, has proven critical not only to my fellow soybean farmers and I, but to the agriculture community as a whole."
ASA Today, the monthly publication of the American Soybean Association, released the following article in recognition of Rep. Gibbs:
Soy Champion: Rep. Bob Gibbs
As an aggie, Congressman Bob Gibbs is part of an ever-shrinking caucus on Capitol Hill.
The number of farmers and ranchers in Washington--22 in the 113th Congress--provides for a much smaller subset of lawmakers with experience in an agricultural setting. This makes Rep. Gibbs' considerable agricultural background a unique asset to the two-term Republican, and the American Soybean Association is proud to honor Congressman Gibbs as a Soy Champion.
A hog farmer and owner/operator of Hidden Hollow Farms in Lakeville, Ohio, Rep. Gibbs has been a staunch advocate for agriculture and rural America both on the Hill and as past President of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, and through leadership roles with the Farm Bureau Bank, the Ohio Livestock Coalition, Ohio Cooperative Council, the Ohio Farm Bureau Alliance Group, Loudonville Farmers Equity, Holmes County Extension Advisory Committee, Holmes County Farm Bureau, and Holmes County Soil and Water Conservation Service.
"My background as a farmer has provided me with invaluable experience when working on Capitol Hill," said the Congressman. "Like most farmers, I believe in common sense solutions, which can be lacking in Washington. I have learned that weighing all the options before making a determination is the best way to move forward."
Rep. Gibbs represents the 7th Congressional District of Ohio, which comprises rural portions of 10 counties south of Cleveland. Prior to redistricting in 2012, Rep. Gibbs represented the state's 18th Congressional District. Rep. Gibbs sits on the House Agriculture Committee, as well as the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, where he chairs the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment.
In a relatively short time on Capitol Hill, Rep. Gibbs has proven himself to be a champion not only of larger agricultural issues, but of those issues critical to soybean farmers. In the 112th Congress, Rep. Gibbs drove House progress on the 2012 Farm Bill, even when prospects for the legislation were at their bleakest. Now in the 113th, the Congressman is back at work, looking to ensure that a final farm bill includes the kind of risk management programs that work for farmers. Another key area in which Rep. Gibbs helps soybean farmers is in his role as Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment.
"My subcommittee has jurisdiction over all the inland waterways and ports of the United States, and it is our goal to ensure that our maritime transportation is working efficiently and reliably. I know how important it is to our soybean farmers to be able to move their exports overseas and maintain our global competitiveness," said Rep. Gibbs "Waterway infrastructure is an imperative part of both our global and interstate economy. Our investment in ports, locks, and dams is critical to moving commerce efficiently and keeping our farming community competitive."
Moving forward, Rep. Gibbs points to the113th Congress' address of the farm bill as an area to move the needle more for farmers. "We need to pass a long-term Farm Bill to provide certainty to our farmers," he said "The most important goal of any farm bill is to give farmers the tools to protect themselves from uncontrollable risks, like weather and international trade repercussions. Ultimately, the Farm Bill policies not only protect our producers, but also American consumers. Americans do not want to be dependent on foreign sources for our food supply where we would have very limited control over what products are used in production and how those food products are produced. We have some of the safest, most affordable food in the world and we need to keep it that way."