Ag Policy “Kingmaker” Flinchbaugh Remembered at K-State

Not quite a year after his passing, a crowd gathered at the Kansas State University Alumni Assocation Friday to celebrate the life of agricultural economics professor Dr. Barry Flinchbaugh.
The farm policy heavyweight who harbored a love of cigars passed away November 2nd of last year.
Former Senator Pat Roberts first met Flinchbaugh when working for then-Congressman Keith Sebelius. That first meeting came as they shared the backseat of a car on a trip to Oklahoma.
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The two worked on agricultural policy issues over nearly five decades and Roberts said that while the issues may have been serious, the conversations were fun.
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Senator Jerry Moran told those gathered on the Alumni Assocation’s Johnson Terrace that being present at the celebration prompted him to miss a pair of votes the night before.

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Senior in Agricultural Economics and Global Food Systems Leadership Reed Middleton relayed how Flinchbaugh’s influence played a role in her becoming a K-Stater instead of staying in-state in Oregon.

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Middleton then recalled the first time she saw Flinchbaugh lead a class.

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She brought up that Flinchbaugh created and nurtured a community.

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Moran noted that when students struggled with Flinchbaugh’s courses, he looked to himself rather than criticize them.

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Roberts offered this thanks.

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Kansas State University President Richard Meyers also spoke, including talking of when he learned about Flinchbaugh being hung in effigy by members of the American Agriculture Movement during a famous 1986 incident on campus.

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Meyers stated that the professor had passion and integrity.

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Governor Laura Kelly provided a statement to be read at the celebration.

Flinchbaugh taught more than four-thousand undergraduate students during his time at Kansas State, while also having helped influence every farm bill written in the U.S. dating back to 1968.

His policy work had resulted in meetings with every president from Harry Truman to George W. Bush and also included his landing seven different Secretaries of Agriculture for speeches as part of the Landon Lecture series.



About Author

Troy returns to Manhattan after spending the last 20 years in Greeley, CO. He served as the "Voice of the UNC Bears" while serving as the news & sports director for a local station. Troy is a ' 93 K-State grad and grew up near Circleville.

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