WASHINGTON COURT HOUSE — On Thursday, March 9, Fayette County came together to celebrate the induction of two great livestock men into the Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame. The evening was filled with great conversations, a great meal prepared by the Farmer’s Pantry, jokes from the master of ceremonies, Ron Weade, and two heartfelt introductions of Jim McCoy and Bill Sexten.
The introduction and stories for Jim McCoy were presented by Kevin Wendt. Wendt spoke about his experiences with McCoy over the years with “show pig” sales, the Ohio State Fair swine shows and national-type conferences swine shows. Wendt discussed how McCoy was very influential in the transformation of “club pig sales” to “show pig sales.”
McCoy is a lifelong resident of Fayette County, serving the county and the field of agriculture (primarily the swine industry) his entire life. He is the father of four children. McCoy has owned and operated a breeding stock, showpig, and boar stud operation consisting of 100 sows and 40 boars. His business hosts multiple sales and open house events. McCoy currently owns a swine consulting business spanning nationwide that deals in all aspects of the showpig industry. He continues to live and work in Fayette County with his wife, Amanda.
Other accomplishments of McCoy include; the Fayette County Pork Producers – 35 years; board member, the president for six years, providing leadership in fundraising to organization/providing scholarships and repairs to facilities on the Fayette County fairgrounds. Real McCoy Genetics was a sponsor of the original campaign in the building of the new swine arena at the Fayette County Fairgrounds. Fayette County Farm Bureau; Board member for 2 years. Ohio Hampshire Association; Board member for 6 years, McCoy was president at the age of 19. McCoy has been a board member for three years for the OHPIGS Advisory Board. One of McCoy’s most treasured involvements includes the National Jr. Swine Association (NJSW) as a Youth Advisory Board member for 16 years and chairman for three years. He received the NJSA Distinguished Service Award in 2006. He has been involved with the National Swine Registry and served on the executive committee for three years. In 2019, McCoy was inducted into the Ohio State Fair Swine Exhibitors Hall of Fame, which was presented and introduced by Wendt. In addition to McCoy’s many accomplishments, he has raised, bred, and consulted on numerous swine show champions and Premier Sire Awards at the Ohio State Fair and national swine shows from 1975-present.
Fayette County is known nationwide for its rich heritage in quality, purebred livestock of multiple species. McCoy has run his operation since graduating high school selling breeding stock in 30 states and Canada, Mexico, Hungary, Panama, and the Dominican Republic. Semen has been sold in 44 states over the last 29 years since offering AI services. McCoy has received the Hampshire “Hog College” boar – three times; an honor that displays the breed standards and sold at the National Barrow show in Austin, MN. McCoy has been the featured speaker at multiple youth leadership conferences, livestock shows, conventions, and National Pork events. McCoy has been a member of the Bloomingburg United Methodist Church and Grace Community Church where he has served on various committees. McCoy has participated in the Wilmington Emmaus Walk where he was a table leader, team member, and presenter. Some closing thoughts, Jim McCoy would be known as a “people person.” With his knowledge and personality, he has had the opportunity to judge swine shows for 43 years, in 29 states. Some of the most noted shows judged include San Antonio Stock Shows, Fort Worth, Star of Texas, AKSASBEN, National Western San Angelo, Oklahoma Youth Expo, NJSA Jr. Nationals Summer Spectacular, and numerous state fairs from Maryland to Alaska. McCoy imported a Pietrain boar from the UK in 1995. “Pistol Pete” was an incredibly influential sire that revolutionized the showpig industry, with his genetics contained in nearly 100% of all crossbred showpigs currently in the USA.
The introduction and stories about Bill Sexten were presented by Nick Cummings. Cummings presented from his heart about his personal experiences as he has worked and grew up around Sexten. Since May 24, 1955, Sexten has been a lifelong resident of Fayette County, having served in the agriculture industry for 55 years, primarily in the beef industry. Bill and his wife, Nanci, have four grown children. Bill is a beef cattle producer with 40 brood cattle and has feeder’s calves. He also farms 800 acres of corn, soybeans, wheat, and hay. Sexten has been a 35-year 4-H advisor of the Fayette Land and Livestock 4-H Club, and a 4-H Tractor Club advisor. Sexten has served on the Fayette County Fair Board and was the Beef Superintendent and Ringman for the Jr. Beef cattle shows at the Fayette County Fair, 2002-2021. He is a member of the Fayette County Cattle Feeders Association and a past president. He is also a member of the Miami Trace FFA Alumni Association.
On the state level, Sexten has served on Ohio Cattlemen’s Association and is a past president, received the Top Land Award presented by the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association in 2008, the Beef Excellence Award for Leadership, Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Foundation, and a past president. Sexten has also been the chairman of the Ohio Beef Expo. Nationally Sexten has served and participated in the National Cattlemen’s Association, including the Region 1 nomination committee, and the vice president of the National Cattlemen’s Association Executive Committee. In addition to Sexten’s 35-year leadership involvement with Fayette County 4-H youth, he is a member of the Jeffersonville Masonic Lodge. Sexten referred to the numerous livestock judging teams that have stopped at their farm over the years to practice their judging skills. Sexten also mentioned how raising livestock is important but the relationships that are developed are the most important.
Some closing thoughts: Sexten is an outstanding representative of the beef cattle industry at the local, state, and national levels. He is recognized for his leadership of youth in the beef industry. Sexten is especially proud to have three of their four children following their father’s footsteps and are involved in the beef industry in some capacity.
The trophy case for the Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame is located at the Agricultural Center, which is located at 1415 Clinton Ave. in Washington Court House. The membership list of the entire list of Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame inductees, and applications for the 2020 Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame are available online at www.fayette.osu.edu. The application can either be completed online or a printed one can be picked up at the Ohio State University Extension Office in suite 100 in the Agricultural Center, Washington Court House. Any questions about the Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame can be directed to Ken Ford, Fayette County ANR Educator, at 740-335-1150.