K-State Research and Extension News
December 13, 2012
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Applications Open Jan. 1 for Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program

Next Class to be KARL’s Twelfth

MANHATTAN, Kan. – The Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program, also known as KARL, is seeking applicants for its next class.

“As a graduate of the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership (KARL) program and current assistant director, I have personally benefitted from the program’s unique leadership curriculum and network of industry and community contacts,” said Al Davis, who recently became vice president of KARL, Inc. “I truly believe in the program and its impact: increasing the capacity and number of qualified agricultural and rural community leaders. KARL alumni play important roles at the community, state and national levels.”

Prior to taking on the KARL vice president position, Davis served as education director for the American Royal and knows the importance of a network of spokespersons and trained leaders in an urbanizing population.

“A typical class has an average age of 32 with a historic age range of 25-55 years of age, said Jack Lindquist, KARL, Inc. president and program director. “Ever since our first 30 adult leaders were accepted into Class I in 1991, we contend that the group is learning as much from their classmates as they do from the curriculum. It is a powerful dynamic when you bring positive minded, action oriented, servant leaders together and watch them debate issues and create solutions for our rural communities and their supporting industries.”

Applications will be available online through the KARL Program website beginning Jan. 1. Interested candidates and nominees will need to download.  Current leaders may nominate candidates and advise their nominee to go online to save the form filler documents and complete them. Forms must be submitted no later than the deadline of April 15.

Applicants who complete and submit the forms will undergo a screening process to determine up to 45 of the top candidates who will be invited for personal interviews in May, 2013.

Each class consists of 30 individuals. The program value is over $20,000 per person accepted, however the tuition fee is $2,000 per year for a total of $4,000. KARL donors contribute to the “fellowship fund” which pays for the remaining $16,000 cost per person.

The program operates without tax-derived funding support so the total pays for all office operations, staff salaries, speaker costs, class lodging, meals and transportation during seminars, including the national and international tours. The program is hosted at Kansas State University through an in-kind gift of office space and access to services.

The two-year program for KARL Class XII includes nine in-state seminars, two national study tours and a two-week international study tour. New class members will be announced on June 1 to the public and training begins in August, 2013. The series  runs through the spring of 2015.

“Five seminars have evolved to the point that the titles have changed,” Lindquist said. “All 12 seminars have been enhanced to include leadership training modules that give participants facilitation skills that help produce positive change in their communities, organizations and businesses.”

After the two-year experience, alumni become lifetime members of the KARL Graduate Program with life-long learning and travel opportunities. The KARL Graduate Program is self funded.


K-State Research and Extension is a short name for the Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service, a program designed to generate and distribute useful knowledge for the well-being of Kansans. Supported by county, state, federal and private funds, the program has county Extension offices, experiment fields, area Extension offices and regional research centers statewide. Its headquarters is on the K-State campus, Manhattan.

Story by: Jack Lindquist
K-State Research & Extension News

Jack W. Lindquist – 785-532-6300