Early in the morning in the small village of Baltimore, Ohio, 4-year-old Reagan Farmer could be seen knocking on doors and passing out leaflets for different campaigns. Growing up as the daughter of a campaign worker, Ohio infielder Farmer loved the day-to-day work of hanging up yard signs or going door-to-door to support different candidates.
15 years later, Farmer has used her hard work and passion to become a Division I athlete, a member of Ohio University’s Student Senate and the student-athlete advisory committee, or SAAC. Now, she's also OU's student treasurer-elect.
Not long after the days of helping her dad as a campaigner, Farmer wanted to try politics herself.
"My whole life I've grown up around politics ," Farmer said. "From middle school and student council, it's something I've always been really interested in."
At Liberty Union High School, Farmer made a name for herself, becoming the National Honors Society president and even serving as the vice president of the Math Club. As Farmer's talent showed up as a leader and a politician, she showed just as much natural ability on the softball field.
In her freshman season, Farmer hit .357 with nine RBIs for the Lions, but she spent the majority of her career with the USSSA Pride, where she hit .493 and was named to the All-Mid State League Honorable Mention as a freshman and First Team All-Mid State League as a sophomore. Farmer's innate skills as a softball player earned her a scholarship to play for Ohio, but it didn't stop her ambition to work in politics.
As a freshman at OU, Farmer had no plans of easing into college life. In addition to being a student-athlete taking difficult classes as an Honors Tutorial College political science major, Farmer also joined the SAAC. As a sophomore, Farmer took on even more responsibility when she became the Student Senate representative for student-athletes. Farmer admitted that balancing her time through her different roles hasn't been easy.
"It's definitely a struggle," Farmer said. "I think managing my time, being where my feet are, and being fully focused on what I need to focus on in that given moment has helped me a lot."
On the field, Farmer didn't get much playing experience as a freshman but recorded her first hit in a game against Toledo in May of 2022. However, this season Farmer has provided the No. 1 Bobcats with some depth at first base, and her bat started to heat up midway through the conference slate. She hit her first career home run against Bowling Green and three days later had her first multi-hit game against Akron, which led Ohio to a 5-2 win.
Softball's true value to Farmer is how it's shaped her as a leader.
"I think softball is an excellent leadership skill," Farmer said. "So it's been an incredible opportunity to be with these 20 people so closely and learn their nice little hobbies and how best to communicate with them. And that relates entirely to working with the Student Senate. Learning people, learning how to communicate with them best and leading them best."
Farmer took on one of the biggest challenges of her political career when she launched her campaign to be the student treasurer-elect, one of three executive Senate positions. Farmer ran as an independent with Clay Lewis and Dan Gordillo, and although Gordillo and Lewis lost their respective races, Farmer managed to pull off the slimmest of victories to be the next treasurer. Farmer received 470 votes to Arthur Bargainer's 466 votes.
From handing out leaflets and hanging up yard signs as a toddler to being elected as OU's student treasurer, Farmer has come a long way. However, her passion and drive for change have been constant.
"I love how we have an ability to make direct change on campus," Farmer said. "And it's not just sitting around talking about ideas, we can actually do stuff."
Softball has allowed Farmer to develop her leadership skills and she has big plans for the future. After her time at OU, she plans to obtain a law degree and pursue campaign work. From pinch hits to policy, Farmer's the real deal.