Ohio Farmer of the Year – John Motter
John Motter was honored with the Master Farmer award for his farming excellence. He is a champion of conservation, an innovator, and a leader in his industry.
John has been a farmer his entire life and is proud to serve on the board of United Way of Hancock County. Through this organization, John hopes to connect people with local farmers and showcase how they make a living from farming.
Early Life and Education
John Motter was a successful businessman renowned for his expertise in horse breeding. Additionally, he owned both a bank and hotel in St. Joseph, Missouri.
He earned his undergraduate degree from Denison University and then went on to attend law school at Ohio Northern University. For thirty years, he practiced law in Bucyrus, Ohio.
His family roots can be traced back to George and Anna Maria Eber Motter, who immigrated from Germany to Maryland in 1751. His great-grandfather Jacob Motter served in the Revolutionary War.
He is a strong and determined individual who has worked his way to the top through unyielding energy and ambition. As Associate Justice of the Sixth Circuit, he enjoys the confidence and respect of his fellow citizens while performing his duties with the highest honor and integrity.
Motter, a native of Pagosa Springs, was selected by the Rays in the first round of the June draft. He has played three minor league seasons for them and batted.346/.429/.428 over six games played with them.
In July, he tied the Biscuits franchise record for most home runs in a month with nine hits and drove in seven. Additionally, he has hit safely in each of his past six games and is hitting.321 with 11 RBIs over his last 23 games.
John was an enthusiastic historian who began writing a column for the Mountain Crier newspaper in Pagosa Springs. His research and creative writing skills earned him numerous awards for his work. Later, John relocated to Marble Falls, Texas, and worked as an editor at several newspapers there.
Achievements and Honors
John Motter’s agricultural accomplishments span from crop management and innovation, to conservation and leadership. He is a member of the Hancock County Agricultural Hall of Fame and recently received the Master Farmer award from Ohio Farmer magazine.
His record jackets and promotional graphics (for acts such as The Nylons, Triumph, Loverboy, Honeymoon Suite, The Diodes, Liona Boyd and Jane Siberry) have earned him several awards. He was nominated six times for a Juno Award and has won twice.
Motter is a recognized leader in agriculture science as well as a renowned expert on network science. He earned the Fellowship of the Network Science Society for his groundbreaking contributions to nonlinear dynamics on networks, including synchronization, cascading failures, synthetic rescues, control algorithms and symmetry phenomena – all applicable to biological networks, metamaterials, microfluidics and power grids alike.
John Motter is a Hancock County farmer who has had to learn some hard lessons along the way. These have enabled him to assume an unprecedented position: Chairman of the United Soybean Board, which administers the soybean checkoff on a national level.
He began his term last December and travels the globe on behalf of U.S. soybean growers to create “win-win situations.”
He had a passion for farming, writing and history as well as his family. Survived by his wife Vicki; children Steve Motter (Carla) and Neola Motter; stepchildren Scott Cunningham, Terri Everett, Holly Everett and Matthew Cunningham; siblings Georgia Marshall Thomas Adams Frances Lexutt; as well as many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.