The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association (OCA) awarded C.J. Brown of Lindewood, Illinois with the Friend of the Expo Award at the Ohio Beef Expo, held March 14-17 at the Ohio Expo Center.
Each year, volunteers spend countless hours ensuring the success of the Ohio Beef Expo. In order to show OCA’s sincere appreciation for those who have dedicated themselves over the years, the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association and the Ohio Beef Expo planning committee developed the “Friends of the Expo” award. Each year, this award is presented to worthy recipients who have contributed to the success of the Expo for the past 32 years. Since its inception in 2002, 45 individuals or organizations have received this award. In 2019, this award was presented to two very deserving individuals, Joe Foster and C.J. Brown.
Foster has been heavily involved with the Ohio Beef Expo since close to the beginning of the event. Many years ago, Foster was encouraged by a past Friend of the Expo award winner to become more active with the Expo and with OCA. Foster took that advice and ran with it. He eventually found himself on the trade show committee, where he is now the assistant chair.
“Joe’s efforts to communicate with trade show exhibitors both during the Expo and year-round are a testimony to his investment in the success of the Ohio Beef Expo’s trade show. He goes above and beyond to accommodate exhibitors during the show. His personal investment in the industry, along with the Expo, are second-to-none,” said Stephanie Sindel, OCA Director of Member Services & Youth Programs and Ohio Beef Expo trade show coordinator.
Foster says the Expo has grown tremendously since he first attended, and notes it continues to get bigger and better every year because of the people involved. Every year he looks forward to seeing all the aspects of the cattle industry in one spot – live cattle, genetics, equipment, supplies and additives. Foster is thankful for all those who help put the time and effort into making the show happen. “Every year we panic on Tuesday, and every Sunday it seems like it went off without a hitch,” said Foster.
Foster began showing cattle at the Columbiana County Fair in the ‘70s and ‘80s and now raises a small herd near Plain City, Ohio alongside his wife, Debbie and their children Luke, Brooke and Morgan. Foster is a district sales manager with Quality Liquid Feeds, primarily overseeing sales in Ohio, southern Indiana, West Virginia and Virginia.