Cooperative Hall of Fame inducts Ohioan Henry Schriver

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WASHINGTON – The National Cooperative Business Association inducted Ohio farmer Henry Schriver into the Cooperative Hall of Fame earlier this year, in honor of his contributions to cooperative business.

Schriver lives in Grafton, Ohio.

A true believer in the cooperative model, Schriver’s involvement in cooperatives spans 61 years.

He is nationally recognized as an educator, co-op advocate and organizer whose belief in the power of people working together is unparalleled.

After graduation from Ohio State University, where he played the tuba in the school band, Schriver followed in his father’s footsteps to become a full-time farmer.

Experience. When he was young, Schriver’s mother encouraged him to memorize poems and recite them on Sunday afternoons for relatives.

That experience came in handy later, when Schriver reluctantly spoke for the Cleveland Farmers Club for June dairy month.

He went on to become a professional public speaker and international educator

He was on the program of the National Institute of Cooperative Education for 37 years, sponsored by the American Institute of Cooperation and later by the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives.

The number of young farmers he has motivated to get involved in cooperatives is legendary. He has made more than 3,000 speeches and participated in a multitude of co-op workshops.

He further expanded his outreach by making an educational film titled Cows, Kids and Co-ops that was used in U.S. classrooms and throughout the world to help teach cooperation, and by visiting both Taiwan and Russia to share his cooperative and agricultural expertise.

Schriver did all of this as a volunteer, as he was never an employee of a cooperative.

Family, details. Schriver had 11 biological children – eight boys, three girls – and one adopted son. Today, he has 39 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.

Schriver served in the Ohio House of Representatives from 1967 to 1968.

He has a long list of national and international awards and honors including the National FFA Service to Youth award in 1964 and the American Institute of Cooperation Award for Educational Programs in Farm Business in 1967.

That same year, he was given a 50th Anniversary Medal authorized by Congress and presented by the Federal Land Bank of Louisville for contributions to American agriculture.

‘Grassroots.’ “The National Cooperative Business Association established the Cooperative Hall of Fame to honor individuals whose contributions to cooperative business have been heroic,” said Liz Bailey of the Cooperative Development Foundation.

“What made Henry Schriver rise to the top was not only the sheer number of people he helped over the years, but that he himself was a co-op member,” Bailey said.

“He didn’t have a string of titles behind his name; it was an awful lot of just grassroots involvement.”

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