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Quarterly Newsletter

Dear Friend,

Welcome to the new format for the quarterly e-newsletter for the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership program. We hope you enjoy learning about our most recent activities and achievements. Please feel free to share this newsletter with those you think might be interested. You can either forward this email or share the newsletter via the Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn buttons above. Also, there are several links within this newsletter connecting you to our website where you can learn more about the KARL Program.

KARL Class XI Year 1 Underway

Class XI at StatehouseClass XI members have attended four seminars so far. Their first was a team-building seminar held in August 2011 at Rock Springs Ranch. In November 2011, the class traveled to Garden City to learn about economic development for that area and the state. December found the class in Colby where they practiced their communication skills and in Atwood, learning about community development. In January 2012, the class visited the Capital, hearing from all three branches of the government about how policy decisions are made and upheld.

The Class has two more seminars in their first year of the program. In February, the class will travel to Leavenworth to learn about conflict management and in March the class will travel to Washington DC to meet with elected officials, government agencies, think tanks, and agriculture related organizations.

To learn more about what the class is learning, please visit our website at:

KARL President Honored by State Legislators

KS Legislature honor 3By Mary Lou Peter (Class VI) for K-State Research and Extension

Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership program president Jack Lindquist, received honors from the Kansas House of Representatives for his work in developing agricultural leadership across Kansas. The program was recognized in a ceremony Jan. 19 in the House Chamber. The recognition was submitted for the record by State Rep. Don Schroeder, R-Hesston. Schroeder is a graduate of KARL Class I.

Lindquist has served as president and program leader of KARL since 1990. Prior to joining the KARL staff, he worked as an agriculture extension agent in Douglas County, Kan., and as a 4-H agent in Dickinson County, Kan. He earned a bachelor’s degree in agricultural education at Kansas State University and is a graduate of the Indiana University Center of Philanthropy Fund Raising School and Essentials of Management Training Program, as well as the Kansas Health Foundation Master Facilitators Program.

KARL ( is a non-profit, educational organization focused on developing leaders for agriculture, business and rural communities. The program is a two-year course that offers study, training and travel for future leaders in Kansas agriculture and rural communities. Each class is composed of up to 30 individuals who participate in nine in-state seminars, one “Blue Chip” seminar, a national study tour to Washington, D.C., and an international study tour to one or more countries.

Since its inception and including the current class, 330 Kansans from 98 of Kansas’ 105 counties have participated in the program. Many have gone on to local, regional or national leadership roles, including Steve Baccus, the current president of Kansas Farm Bureau, who is also on the American Farm Bureau Board. Also with Kansas Farm Bureau leadership is Vice President s Rich Felts and state director Jerry McReynolds. KARL graduates John Thaemert and McReynolds have both served as president of the National Association of Wheat Growers; Bob Haselwood currently serves as treasurer of the American Soybean Association; Ron Suppes has been chairman of U.S. Wheat Associates; and three KARL graduates -- Larry Jones, Mark Smith and David Cross – have served as president of the Kansas Livestock Association. KARL alum Dana Peterson is now the chief executive officer of the National Association of Wheat Growers. Two chairman of No-Till on the Plains – Doug Palen and Josh Lloyd – are KARL alumni, as are three presidents of the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers -- Thaemert, McReynolds and Kendall Hodgson. KARL graduate Gary Harshberger has served as chair of the Kansas Water Authority and Dennis Metz is a past chair of the Kansas Dairy Commission. “There are many more KARL graduates who are in key leadership roles,” Lindquist said, “plus scores of commissioners on county and city governments, hospital board members, extension council members and others.”

Even as he guides future leaders, Lindquist is charting the KARL program’s course for the future. “One of my life mentors, the late John Baldwin, president of Dillon Stores once told me, ‘A true leader plans his own succession,’” Lindquist said. “We hired Marisa Larson last March to learn about the management of the program through the current class (XI). This transition will allow me to assume duties in 2013 as the new graduate program director. KARL's new advanced level of life-long leadership development will officially launch in May of 2013.”

“The program works well for Kansas commodity organizations, commissions and companies have been utilizing the program for executive level development.,” Lindquist said. “They endorse the KARL program through partnership investments because of its ability to supplement their leadership pool with graduates who have been trained to deal with issues from rural development through international trade. Virtually all of the organizations have had KARL graduates on their boards and in top leadership roles.”


Finnup Foundation Supports the KARL Program

FinnupFor more than 130 years, the Finnup family has been contributing to the betterment of southwest Kansas. And for many years the Finnup Foundation Trust, established in 1977 by siblings Frederick and Isabel Finnup, has been supporting the statewide efforts of the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program (KARL).

Frederick Finnup was born in Germany in 1840 and came to the United States with his parents where they settled in Ohio when he was 5 years old. As an adult, Fredrick moved to Indiana where he became a partner in a furniture factory. In 1879 he sold his share of the factory and moved his family to Garden City, Kansas and started a family business. His son, George, carried on the family business and became a prominent entrepreneur and businessman in Garden City. George and his wife, Alta May Smith, had two children—Frederick and Isabel.

George Finnup was proud to live in Garden City and he sought to make western Kansas a great place to live. As his business prospered, George looked for ways to contribute to Garden City and its residents. Believing education was important, George worked to ensure that every school in the county had a library. George also provided start-up money to many schools, churches and community projects in southwest Kansas.

George’s children, Frederick and Isabel, continued the family business and neither ever married. They never lost sight of the hopes and dreams their grandfather and father had for Garden City. On October 25, 1977, Frederick and Isabel established the Finnup Foundation Trust. Upon their deaths, each of their estates would transfer into the Foundation. Documents setting up the trust outline the Finnup philosophy in sharing the family’s prosperity: “There is an obligation to use any wealth for the preservation and extension of the religious, cultural, intellectual, moral and charitable aspects of our heritage, as well as the protection of our system of government, for the betterment and general welfare of our people, now and in the future….”

When asked why the Finnup Foundation, an organization that focuses mostly on southwest Kansas, would support KARL, Caverly Hart, Finnup Foundation Advisory Trustee, said “We knew it was a program the Finnup family would be interested in supporting. We have a direct investment in Kansas agriculture as we have many acres of land devoted to farming and ranching. The Finnups always looked beyond local industry information to have a full understanding of the scope of their business,” says Caverly. “Now that we live in a global economy, we commend KARL for having a local, state, national and international focus.”


KARL Alum Gives Back to Vietnam

Alisa with Vietnamese girl in fieldIn March 2011, KARL Class X spent two weeks traveling around Vietnam for their international study tour. This trip inspired class member Alisa Rath, of St. Francis, Kansas. “I was really moved during my experience in Vietnam,” says Alisa. “I was at a place in my life when I realized that I had too much of everything. So much stuff at home that I simply didn’t need. After visiting Vietnam and seeing firsthand the devastation of war and the abject poverty, I felt like I wanted to help somehow. ” And she has. Upon leaving Vietnam, Alisa gave their translator, Thanh, her extra shoes, jackets and an umbrella. “I promised him that when I got home I would send him more,” says Alisa. “When I got home I just started packing stuff up.”
Alisa wanted to share her experience in Vietnam with the community, so she put together a presentation and began giving it at various places. “I shared about the KARL program and my trip and talked about what I was doing in sending items to people in need,” says Alisa. “People just started writing checks and giving me money to help with the postage costs. So I set up the Vietnamese Relief Fund. From that I’ve gone to speak to high school students who want to collect and donate clothes, to other counties and organizations. The response has been truly amazing.”
Alisa with school kids in Vietnam
The Vietnamese Relief Fund (VRF) welcomes donated goods and monetary donations to help with the cost of sending the packages to Vietnam. The items are mailed to Thanh, the translator and guide who accompanied Class X for the two weeks they were in Vietnam. He lives in a small village outside Hanoi. Thanh shares the items with local villagers and gives the books and toys to the children. Alisa and Thanh stay in touch via Facebook and their children have become friends. Alisa’s son sends Thanh’s son small care packages and Thanh’s son wants to learn English so he can communicate with his American friend. If you’d like to learn more about VRF or contribute, please contact Alisa Rath at

KARL News and Updates

CHS Invests $10,000 in KARL Class XI

One of the 35 largest private companies in the United States has joined other contributors in supporting the current class of the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program.

CHS, Inc., a leading U.S. farmer-owned cooperative and diversified energy, grains and foods company, announced it is contributing $10,000 to the KARL program. KARL is a non-profit, educational organization dedicated to developing leaders for agriculture, business and rural communities.

“We are proud to support the efforts of Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership, Inc. and thank you for the opportunity to continue investing in the future of agriculture, rural America and cooperative business through education and leadership development,” said CHS Foundation president William Nelson in a statement. A contribution of $5,000 is for the general program operations during KARL Class XI and an additional $5,000 is for the KARL Program, Class XI- Cooperative Education 101 module.

Inver Grove Heights, Minn.-based CHS is a supplier of energy, fertilizer, grain marketing, livestock feed, food and food ingredients, along with business resources including insurance, financing, and other risk management services.

The CHS Foundation invests in the future of rural America, agriculture and cooperative business through education and leadership development.

Class Member/Alumni Updates and News

Amy Roeder (Class V), in her role at the USDA Risk Management Agency is invited to speak to groups across the country. Some recent notable speaking engagements include the Southern Plains Drought Assessment and Outlook Forum in November 2011. Also in November, Roeder spoke to a group of NOAA agency directors, Climate Prediction Center scientists and CoCoRAHs personnel.

Bob Haselwood (Class I) was elected to serve as Treasurer of the United Soybean Board.

Pam Davis (Class VII) retired in January 2012 from the Dept. of Anatomy & Physiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University.

Scott Hesse (Class IX) was accepted to the Kansas Association of Realtors "Right Track 2012 Leadership Training Program."

Jarrod (Class XI) and Sarah Bowser of Jackson County were named one of the 2011 Kansas Farm Bureau Farm Families of the Year.

The 2011 Young Farmers and Ranchers Achievement Award went to Chris (Class XI) and Tina Tanner of Norton County.

Randall (Class XI) and Erin Debler, Wabaunsee County, were awarded the Young Farmers and Ranchers Excellence in Agriculture award for 2011.

J.J Jones (Class X) and former KARL board member Steve Irsik were part of a Kansas trade mission to Russia and Kazakhstan in October 2011.

KARL Supporters

Numerous individuals, businesses and organizations give of their time and money to make KARL a success to all who participate. We’d like to thank those who’ve made contributions during the third quarter (Nov. 1, 2011-Jan. 31, 2012). If we’ve missed a contribution, please accept our apologies and notify us so we can acknowledge it in our next newsletter. Thank you.

Aaron Gerdes Farms, Inc—Aaron & Amy Gerdes, Dodge City
Abilene Animal Hospital, P.A.—Mike Whitehair, Abilene
Animal Health International—Shawn Carlson, Garden City
Ag Services, Inc.—Carolyn Kleiber, Hillsboro
Agri Beef/Supreme Cattle Feeders, LLC—Nancy Parsons, Kismet
Arganbright Farms, LLC—Francis & Carolyn Arganbright, Waterville
Arganbright Farms, LLC—Thad Arganbright, Waterville
Armstrong Farms—Jay Armstrong, Muscotah
Don Adams, Yates Center
Barton County Farm Bureau Association—Jerry Esfeld, Great Bend
Andrea Bauck, Leoti
Black Hills Energy—Gabe Schlickau, Danville
Clark & Carla Sue Boyer, Kingman
Brass Tax, Inc.—Rohn Shellenberge, Scott City
Brooks & Susan Brenn, Herndon
Mike & Jeanene Brown, Colby
Brown County Farm Bureau Association—Jenny Mueseler, Hiawatha
Daryl & Joyce Buchholz, Manhattan
Butler REC—Travis Griffin, El Dorado
P.C. Calderón, Arlington, TX
CHS Foundation—William Nelson, Inver Grove Heights, MN
Mark & Cheryl Coberly, Gove
Crawford County Farm Bureau—Mary Ann Shull, Girard
Denison State Bank—Dean Tuley, Holton
Dodge City Veterinary Clinic, Inc.—Brock & Chad Kerr, Dodge City
Pat & Linda Donovan, Norton
Aaron Dunbar, Princeton
J.L. Evins, Oakley
Farm and Ranch Realty, Inc.—Don Hazlett, Colby
Farmers State Bank—Mark Goehring, Oakley
Faurot Farms, Inc.—Terry & Judy Faurot, Scott City
Feed Mercantile, Inc.—E.C. Brookover, Jr., Garden City
Finney County Feedyard, Inc., Garden City
First National Bank—R.A. Edwards, Hutchinson
First National Bank—Steve Burns, Cimmaron
First National Bank—Jay Kennedy, Frankfort
First State Bank and Trust—Bill Grant, Tonganoxie
Ray & Susan Flickner, Wichita
Barry Flinchbaugh, Manhattan
Charles Frickey, Oberlin
Nelson & Marilyn Galle, Manhattan
Jay Garetson, Sublette
Gregg & Susan Gartrell, Stockton
Malcolm & Charlotte Gigstad, Everest
Gjerstad Cattle Company, Inc.—LaVada Gjerstad, Maple Hill
Julius Govert, Cunningham
Grower’s Edge, Inc.—Peg Nally, Garden City
George & Alice Ham, Manhattan
Haselwood Farms, Inc.—Robert Haselwood, Berryton
Martin Hawver, Topeka
Mike & Lucille Heller, Hunter
Steve & Lori Hennessey, Tecumseh
Gordon Hibbard, Manhattan
Hi Plains Feed, LLC—Stacy Bownes, Garden City
Wes & Jacque Hobbs, WaKeeney
Kendall & Melinda Hodgson, Little River
Ron & Nancy Honig, Hugoton
Christy Hopkins, Tribune
Innovative Livestock Services, Great Bend
· ILS Risk Management, Manhattan
· Great Bend Feeding, Great Bend
· Ward Feed Yard North, Larned
· Ward Feed Yard South, Larned
· Lewis Feed Lot, Kearney, NE
· McClymont Feed Yard, Holdrege, NE
· Windmill Feeders, Elba, NE
· Roberts Cattle Company, Lexington
· Alfalfa Pellets, Great Bend
· Agri-Fuels, Larned
· ILS Farm Partnership, Great Bend
Rodney Jones, Waukomis, OK
Larry & Becky Jones, Holcomb
Kevin Journagan, Topeka
KanEquip, Inc.—Jim & Barbara Meinhardt, Wamego
Kansas Bank Corporation—Melvin Winger, Johnson
Kansas Bankers Association-Kansas Ag Bankers Division—Doug Wareham, Topeka Kansas Corn Commission—Sue Hardman, Garnett
Kansas Grain and Feed Association—Tom Tunnell, Topeka
Kansas Grain Sorghum Commission—Jill Barnhardt, Lebo
Kansas Farmers Service Association—Mike Pesek, Hutchinson
Kansas Livestock Association—Dee Likes, Topeka
Fred & Nancy Kerr, Pratt
Kenneth Knight, Lyons
Jim & Jackie Koch, Clyde
Lane County Farm Bureau—Keith Shapland, Dighton
Lane-Scott Electric Cooperative—Earl Steffens, Dighton
Marisa Larson, Manhattan
Jennifer Latzke, Dodge City
John Lehman, Girard
Brian & Jana Lindley, Wamego
Jack & Lindy Lindquist, Manhattan
Jim & Sally Lindquist, Manhattan
Trent Loos, Litchfield, NE
Tim Lunginsland, Lenexa
Lee Masenthin, Lawrence
Dollie Mathes, Harper
Mike & Tammy McClellan, Palco
McClellan Farms—Robert & JoEva McClellan, Palco
Marvin McReynolds, Plainville
McVean Trading & Investments, LLC—Mike Wharton, Memphis, TN
Meadowmere Angus—Duane & Pam Davis, Westmoreland
Jim & Barbara Meinhardt, Wamego
Jim & Karma Michael, McCune
Midway Co-op, Inc., Osborne
MK Farms, Inc.—Gary Millershaski, Lakin
Gayla Moeckel, Sylvia
Jeffery Morgan, Concordia
Damon New, Tonganoxie
North Central Kansas Cooperative—Darel Anderson, Hope
Northwood Farms, Inc.—Frances Kelsey, Silver Lake
Brad Palen, Salina
Dana Peterson, Washington DC
Scott & Jennifer Pfortmiller, Stafford
Pioneer hi-Bred International, Inc.—Kerry Hoffschneider, Lincoln, NE
Poky Feeders, Inc.—Joe Morgan, Scott City
Pratt County Farm Bureau Association—Luke Hoeme, Pratt
Pratt Feeders, LLC—Jerry Bohn, Pratt
Ray & Dena Purdy, Garden City
Ken Rahjes, Elwood, NE
John Richardson, Topeka
Bill Riley, Manhattan
Roberds Farms, Inc.—Dale Roberds, Pittsburg
Shawn & Ryan Roberts, Scott City
Vernon Rosson, Welch
Rupert Land & Cattle Company—Stephen Rupert, Minneapolis
Derek Schrader, Alta Vista
Sedgwick County Farm Bureau Agricultural Association—Kent Winter, Wichita
Sink, Gillmore & Gordon, LLP—Jim Gordon, Manhattan
Skyland Grain LLC—David Cron, Johnson
Ab Smith, Sharon Springs
Mark & Cindy Smith, Sharon Springs
Bill & Julie Spiegel, Manhattan
Jason & Jennifer Stallman, Hutchinson
Stockgrowers State Bank—Kendal Kay, Ashland
Brock & Kelli Thurman, Kiowa
Fred & Jeannie Traskowsky, Woodbine
UCI, Wichita
Sandra Utter Levering, Pratt
Mary Vanier, Manhattan
Vulgamore Land & Cattle Co, Inc.—Larry, Judi, Brian & Myles Vulgamore, Scott City
Brian & Michele Waugh, Oakley
Tom Webb, Sublette
WindRiver Grain LLC—Bob Tempel, Garden City
Ken & Deb Wood, Chapman
Lance Woodbury, Garden City
Works Farm—Dick Works, Humboldt
Wyldewood Cellers, Inc.—John Brewer, Mulvane
John & Carol Yost, Moundridge
Graduate Winter Summit
The KARL Graduate Program Winter Summit is February 20 and 21 at the K-State Alumni Center. 

The Summit will be featuring new methods in communications. The KARL family members and their guests will be able to better utilize new tools in communication through topics that include social media as a tool for instant and inexpensive communication and education.  We’ll study consumer learning and marketplace decision making, expanded viewpoint consideration and Mind Bending – rewiring for tomorrows marketing techniques.  Sessions will include nationally recognized specialists in social media.  Practical sessions will include examples of application by regionally recognized marketers savy with Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.  The cap note will include creative marketing skills and aggressive image building in challenging and competitive environments. 

Contact us to complete registration by Tuesday, February 14 - $125 per person payable to KARL Graduate Program.  Email Jack at:
Graduate Tour to Sweden
Graduate Program Tour to SWEDEN July 22-August 2, 2012

The 2012 KARL Tour will include 12 full days, including 10 days in country, in beautiful Sweden during the height of Midsommer! The price is based on per person double occupancy. With 20 minimum participants per person cost is: $ 4,150.00. Single room rate is $ 4,750.00. Cost per person will be lower based on more registrants - minimum cost will be $3,725.00. Final price will decline for every 5 increments beyond 20 paid participants. Maximum group size is limited to 40 paid participants. Price INCLUDES Land costs, round trip air and airline taxes & airline fuel surcharges (estimated to be $300 per person).
KARL Graduates and their guest can register by providing each participants full name (as on passport) plus mailing address, email and phone (mobile) plus a check for $650 deposit per person made payable to KARL GRADUATE PROGRAM by February 15 for the early bird registration. Latest available registration is April 1 unless filled prior. Limited to first come, first served.
For events listed please send digital registration by email to and if using PayPal for fee payments use the website link at


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