Joe Maxwell grew up on a family farm in Missouri. Maxwell has served his state as a state representative, state senator, and Lt. Governor. Joe began his political career as a campaign staffer for several legislative and statewide races. He successfully defeated the so-called “Right to Farm” in Oklahoma, an effort by multi-national corporations to gain fundamental constitutional rights so they could exhibit their power over family farmers and destroy the rural way of life. As a legislator, he passed many bills that supported value-added agriculture projects and programs for family farmers and their traditional animal husbandry practices while working against large-scale, multi-national industrialized farms. He and his brother Steve raise humanely certified pigs under the Global Animal Partnership 5-step program.
Today, as the Executive Director of the Organization for Competitive Markets, Maxwell works every day to fight to keep markets open for family farmers and independent ranchers. His experience has set him on a course to break the lock industrial agriculture has on almost three quarters of a billion dollars of federal funds known as the checkoff programs. He knows for any person or organization to have any chance at legislatively advancing independent family farm agriculture, our opponents can’t be allowed to use our tax dollars to build their influence to work against these measures.