K-State Research and Extension News
June 03, 2013
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Cutting Edge Opportunities Await New Kansas Leaders

12th KARL Class Announced

SALINA, Kan. – Thirty Kansans were named to the 12th Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership, Inc. (KARL) class at a celebration in Salina on Saturday, June 1.

“Big shoes will be needed to walk in the path of those that stepped up before us,” said Al Davis, president of KARL, in announcing the class roll. The program is a two-year educational experience offering intensive study, training and travel for emerging leaders in agriculture and rural communities.

Davis said the newest KARL class represents both the small Kansas community and urban viewpoints.

“The class members were incredibly excited to get the notice calls and humbled by the selection due to the competitiveness of the candidate pool,” Davis added.

The class average age has risen from 32 for Class XI to 35.3 for Class XII, and will include 12 women, and the most farmers and ranchers in years – with 20 full- and part-time producers. 

Jack Lindquist, KARL graduate program director, assisted in the announcement of the study tours.  Lindquist has served as president of KARL, Inc. and KARL program director for 23 years. 

The class will participate in nine in-state seminars, Lindquist said. Study tours over the two years include a national blue chip seminar, which is an executive review of a Fortune 500 corporation’s strategic management processes; a tour to Washington, D.C. to study decision making on the federal level; and an international study tour will be the capstone event in 2015. 

“The blue chip seminar will be hosted by Burlington Northern Santa Fe in Waco, Texas, while the international study tour will take the group to South Africa,” Davis said. “South Africa is rapidly growing into a major competitor and partner in feeding the world.”

The new KARL class members will soon begin attending seminars, with the first year focused on economic literacy instruction, communications training, conflict management exposure and the development of contacts at the local, state and national levels. The second year includes sessions on biosecurity, energy, water conservation, food safety, trade balance issues and ends with a study tour to experience the culture, political system and agriculture of a competitor and trading partner.

“By learning about the world, as well as local and national issues, KARL graduates are prepared to take on today’s critical challenges,” Davis said.

The new KARL class was introduced at the Rolling Hills Wildlife Adventure Conference Center west of Salina. The KARL board of directors, graduates and donors were on hand to celebrate the announcement of the 30 newest members of the statewide leadership training experience.

KARL’s mission is to provide leadership development for agricultural and rural stakeholders by designing and offering education and enrichment programs as well as a forum for continuous engagement.

KARL training carries a value of nearly $20,000 per person. Since tax revenues are not used for the program, funding is provided by contributions from the private sector. Donations from individuals, organizations, companies, corporations and foundations provide more than 80 percent of the program’s budget. The participants pay a tuition fee of $2,000 each of the two years for the remaining costs. 

People wishing to invest in their future by supporting the program can make tax deductible contributions directly to KARL at 101 Umberger Hall, Manhattan KS 66506. Call (785) 532-6300 or go to the program website for more information.

KARL Class XII members -

Atchison – Matthew Symns

Beloit – Tony King; Heather Hartman

Cedar Point – Sara Dawson

Chanute – Wade Collins

Colby – Tanner Brown

Danville – Riley James Ellerman

Dexter – Shannon Martin

Dodge City – Sarah Farlee

Garden City – Jonathan D. Lightner

Goodland – Timothy Franklin

Hepler – Kyra O’Brien

Horton – Gregory Paul Rodvelt

Ingalls – Ryan Jay Brady

Kansas City – Joseph Thomas

Kiowa – Miranda Walz-Allen

Lawrence – Wade Wilbur

Manhattan – Andrea Stroberg Kitch; Greg Legleiter; Brett Esau

Marysville – Travis Mason

McPherson – Shane Michael Eck

Moundridge – Grant Good

Natoma – Teresa Chrilser

Newton – Matthew Voth

Park City – Lesley Schmidt

Spring Hill – Susan Mackey

Topeka – Chelsea Kay Good

WaKeeney – Scott (Bronc) Barrows

Washington – Rebecca Frerking



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: Elaine Edwards
K-State Research & Extension News

Al Davis – 785-532-6300 or karl@ksu.edu