Chief Executive Officer
Debbie Phillips returned to Rural Action in 2017. Phillips helped grow the organization as Development Director, and in 2018 was named as CEO. She served as the area’s representative to the Ohio House for 8 years immediately prior to returning to Rural Action. As a House member, she served on the House Finance Committee, House Education Committee, House Agriculture & Rural Development Committee, the Joint Legislative Ethics Commission and the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review. She also previously served as a member of Athens City Council. She was the founding Executive Director of the Ohio Fair Schools Campaign, which was hosted through Rural Action and worked to promote quality public education. Debbie is a graduate of Ohio University and lives near Albany with her husband and children. Debbie’s core purpose is to help connect people to a sense of agency and joy. She loves our region and its smart and resilient people.