Reiterman, Kirkpatrick inducted into Ag Hall Of Fame


WASHINGTON COURT HOUSE — On Tuesday, March 12, Fayette County came together to celebrate the induction of two great men into the Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame. The evening was filled with great conversations, wonderful displays of history from each candidate’s families and the Fayette County Museum, many jokes from the master of ceremonies, Ron Weade, and two heartfelt introductions of Gary Reiterman and Bill Kirkpatrick.

The presentations of the inductees began with Robin Beekman, longtime friend of Reiterman and his family. Beekman spoke about his involvement in the Farm Bureau and his natural ability to want to help people. She went on to talk about Reiterman, who was born on Sept. 18, 1941, and has been a resident of Fayette County for 63 years. Reiterman has dedicated his life to farming and community service. He graduated from Monroe High School in 1959 and the Ohio State University in 1965 with a degree in agronomy. Reiterman’s passion for agriculture has been unwavering.

Beekman explained that Reiterman is the owner/operator of Reiterman Seed Farms, LLC, a business started by his father over 75 years ago. Reiterman, along with his son Mike, continue the legacy. In addition to the seed company, Reiterman also established Reiterman Feed and Supply, LLC in 1999, where his son John and Mike’s wife Nicol are actively involved with Gary’s guidance.

Beekman went on to share Reiterman’s involvement in various agriculture organizations highlighting his commitment to the industry. He has served as president and vice president of the Fayette County Farm Bureau. Reiterman has been recognized by the Ohio Seed Improvement Association and Ohio Foundation Seed for his involvement with growing better wheat, barley, and soybeans.

Chet Murphy, director of the Fayette Soil & Water District, added to Reiterman’s presentation by discussing the more than 30 years of service Reiterman has provided to the Fayette Soil & Water District. He noted Reiterman has served in multiple officer capacities, but spent 23 of his 30 years as a board member serving as the fiscal officer for the district. Murphy went on to tell how Reiterman has always been involved with waterway projects and field days conducted by the Soil & Water District.

Beyond agriculture, Reiterman is deeply involved in his community, serving roles in Grace United Methodist Church, Fayette County Zoning and Appeals Board, Masonic Lodge #269, Scottish Rite, Aladdin Shriners, and the Ohio Early Ford V-8 Club. Reiterman’s character shines through his dedication to serving others, exemplified by his countless hours spent at church, involvement in community boards, and participation in various clubs. He is respected for his leadership, faith, and commitment to family, evident in his close relationship with his wife Sheila, sons Mike and John, and grandchildren. In his leisure time, Reiterman indulges in his passion for antique Ford cars, sharing this interest with his family and attending car shows.

In summary of Beekman’s and Murphy’s presentations, Reiterman’s ability to balance a successful farming operation, seed business, and community service exemplifies his remarkable leadership and dedication to Fayette County. He is esteemed as a farmer-friendly individual and a respected figure within his community, known for his integrity and kindness toward others.

Bill Kirkpatrick received the induction into the Ag. Hall of Fame posthumously due to his untimely death on Sept. 20, 2014. Kirkpatrick’s life accomplishments were presented by Tara Durbin, chief lending officer for Farm Credit Mid-America and Cody Kirkpatrick, Bill’s son.

Durbin began by talking about how Kirkpatrick was born on July 28, 1947, in New Holland, and deeply rooted in agriculture from a young age, spending much of his time on his grandfather’s farm. Kirkpatrick graduated from Miami Trace High School in 1965 and Morehead State University in 1969 with a double major in business and agriculture, and his passion for farming continued to grow.

Following college, Kirkpatrick was drafted into the United States Army during the Vietnam War era, where he served in missile electronics and played basketball for Army teams. Upon returning home, he married Diana Eckle and worked for local farmers, eventually joining Federal Land Bank as a loan officer. Durbin talked about the time when Kirkpatrick was a loan officer here in Fayette County, there was a basketball hoop in the parking lot so when employees needed a stress relief, they could go shoot some hoops. Kirkpatrick even had a weight bench in the back room to allow for a chance to “pump some iron” if stress relief was needed.

Durbin and Cody both shared about how throughout his career, Kirkpatrick supported local farmers through challenging times, assisting many through financial difficulties during the 1980s farm crisis. He received recognition for his exceptional performance and played a pivotal role in hiring and mentoring key employees within the Farm Credit network, which included Durbin herself.

Kirkpatrick’s dedication to agriculture extended beyond his professional life, actively participating in organizations such as SW Ohio Corn Growers, Fayette County Soil & Water Conservation, Fayette County Cattlefeeders, and Fayette County Farm Bureau. He was also deeply involved in his community, serving in various capacities at New Holland Methodist Church and as a member of the New Holland Masonic Lodge 392.

Cody talked about how his dad was immensely proud of his family, including his daughter Courtney, himself as his son, and grandchildren Lexi, Cole, and Emma. At the time of his passing, he left behind a legacy of love, dedication, and service. His ashes were spread on the family farm, ensuring his presence would forever watch over his land and loved ones.

The trophy case for the Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame is located at the Agricultural Center, which is located at 1415 US Hwy 22 SW, Washington Court House. The membership list of the entire list of Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame inductees and applications for the 2025 Fayette County Agricultural Hall of Fame are available online at 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.

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