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K-State announces new Barry Flinchbaugh Center for Ag PolicyK-State announces new Barry Flinchbaugh Center for Ag Policy

Center will focus on student engagement, policy research and more.

Jennifer M. Latzke

August 28, 2023

2 Min Read
3 men, 1 woman standing in front of photo backdrop of cattle
FLINCHBAUGH LEGACY: Kansas State University announced Aug. 17 the creation of the Barry Flinchbaugh Center for Ag Policy. The center will focus on student engagement through lectures, research opportunities, internships and more. From left are Richard Linton, K-State president; Cathy and James Flinchbaugh; and Marshall Stewart, K-State senior vice president and chief of staff. Courtesy of K-State Communications and Marketing

During the Aug. 17 Kansas Governor’s Summit on Agricultural Growth, hosted by the Kansas Department of Agriculture, Kansas State University announced the creation of the new Barry Flinchbaugh Center for Ag Policy.

The center honors and continues the work of Barry Flinchbaugh, who served Kansas State University, the state of Kansas and the nation as a policy educator for nearly half a century. Flinchbaugh, who died in 2020, was known for his teaching and practice of the Alternatives and Consequences policy education model to help policymakers address opportunities and challenges facing agricultural producers.

“As a former ag dean, I have been a longtime admirer of Barry Flinchbaugh — his legacy in the ag world is amazing,” said Richard Linton, K-State president. “The Barry Flinchbaugh Center for Ag Policy will allow K-State to showcase our continued commitment to farmers and ranchers across the state who are searching for effective solutions to agricultural challenges through respectful compromise.”

The center, a freestanding organization that works in partnership with the K-State Office of Engagement, will focus on student engagement through lectures, research opportunities, internships and more. Also core to the center’s mission is working with stakeholders in agriculture and their supply chains to identify innovative solutions to current and future challenges facing agriculture and rural communities.

“By nurturing leaders to understand the role of agriculture in national security and providing vital information to agriculture's stakeholders, the center will effectively carry on Barry's legacy and advance our agricultural communities and industries,” Linton added.

The creation of the center has been led by several of Flinchbaugh’s former students, a group known as the Flinchbaugh Legacy Keepers.

“Barry Flinchbaugh’s former students are one of his greatest legacies, and as such, we felt it critical to find multiple ways to keep his legacy active at Kansas State University and beyond,” said Jay Armstrong, Flinchbaugh Legacy Keepers’ liaison to the university. “We are thrilled to see this center come to fruition and are excited to see how it advances our industry.”

The Barry Flinchbaugh Center for Ag Policy is just one example of K-State’s path forward as a next-generation land-grant university. Additionally, the center aligns with K-State 105, the university’s answer to the call for a comprehensive economic growth and advancement solution for Kansas, leveraging the statewide K-State Research and Extension network to deliver the full breadth of the university’s collective knowledge and solution-driven innovation to every Kansan, right where they live and work.

Source: Kansas State University Communications and Marketing.

About the Author(s)

Jennifer M. Latzke

Editor, Kansas Farmer

Through all her travels, Jennifer M. Latzke knows that there is no place like Kansas.

Jennifer grew up on her family’s multigenerational registered Angus seedstock ranch and diversified farm just north of Woodbine, Kan., about 30 minutes south of Junction City on the edge of the Kansas Flint Hills. Rock Springs Ranch State 4-H Center was in her family’s backyard.

While at Kansas State University, Jennifer was a member of the Sigma Kappa Sorority and a national officer for the Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. She graduated in May 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural communications and a minor in animal science. In August 2000 Jennifer started her 20-year agricultural writing career in Dodge City, Kan., on the far southwest corner of the state.

She’s traveled across the U.S. writing on wheat, sorghum, corn, cotton, dairy and beef stories as well as breaking news and policy at the local, state and national levels. Latzke has traveled across Mexico and South America with the U.S. Wheat Associates and toured Vietnam as a member of KARL Class X. She’s traveled to Argentina as one of 10 IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism. And she was part of a delegation of AAEA: The Ag Communicators Network members invited to Cuba.

Jennifer’s an award-winning writer, columnist, and podcaster, recognized by the Kansas Professional Communicators, Kansas Press Association, the National Federation of Presswomen, Livestock Publications Council, and AAEA. In 2019, Jennifer reached the pinnacle of achievements, earning the title of “Writer of Merit” from AAEA.

Trips and accolades are lovely, but Jennifer says she is happiest on the road talking to farmers and ranchers and gathering stories and photos to share with readers.

“It’s an honor and a great responsibility to be able to tell someone’s story and bring them recognition for their work on the land,” Jennifer says. “But my role is also evolving to help our more urban neighbors understand the issues our Kansas farmers face in bringing the food and fiber to their store shelves.”

She spends her time gardening, crafting, watching K-State football, and cheering on her nephews and niece in their 4-H projects. She can be found on Twitter at @Latzke.

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