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K-State Research and Extension News

Kansas Profile

Kansas Profile is a weekly radio feature hosted by Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development.  Each is approximately 4-minutes in length.

Send comments, questions or requests for copies of past programs to ksrenews@ksu.edu.

Program Date

Segment Title
and Description

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09-13-19MIKE AND AMY JENSENJENSEN FARMS– A central Kansas family operates a successful business built around a vegetable crop that most people would never associate with the Sunflower State. Learn about this old café that was given new life as a trendy spot for healthy eating. KAN 09-13
09-06-19BUDDY WILLIAMSCUSTOM ROPE– We all get stuck from time to time, and a good rope can help pull you out of any sticky situation. When giant trucks, tractors and boats need a tow, they’re probably using a heavy-duty tow rope created by a man from Kansas. KAN 09-06
08-30-19MIKE AND DONNA UHL– ALLEN MEAT PROCESSING– A cattleman and a chef – who just happen to be married – recently bought a meat processing business in rural Kansas. In addition to meat processing, the couple is expanding the business to meet the needs of the community. KAN 08-30
08-23-19VERL COUPTALMAGE MUSEUM– It’s rarely a welcome sight when a business or essential service shutters its doors in a small community — but sometimes, such closings can lead to new things that enrich the lives of citizens. Learn about a military veteran and mail carrier who seized an opportunity to turn two vacant buildings into cultural touchstones.KAN 08-23
08-16-19PATHWAYS TO HEALTH– When setting out towards a destination or goal, it’s important to have directions, a plan for getting there. A community organization in far west Kansas is helping its citizens take aim at a healthier way of life.KAN 08-16 
08-09-19JERAD GOOCH– LEOTI FOODS/SIMPLY PRODUCE– Last week, we heard about K-State Research and Extension’s Culture of Health initiative. Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, tells us about a local grocery store owner who made it his personal mission to offer his customers a greater quantity, quality, and variety of fresh fruits and vegetables.KAN 08-09
08-02-19PAULA PETERSCULTURE OF HEALTH (Part 1)– Rising health care costs have spurred individuals and health insurance providers to look for ways to promote better personal health. Learn about one woman’s mission to leverage an existing network to do for personal health and wellness, what it’s already done for agriculture.KAN 08-02
07-26-19DON WHITTEN– BEECHER BIBLE AND RIFLE CHURCH– Bibles and rifles are an unlikely combination, but the two came together during the free-state movement in a Kansas country church. Learn more about this church’s past and present.KAN 07-26
07-19-19LYNN SMITHPIONEER BLUFFS– A successful non-profit organization in the Flint Hills can trace its roots back to one man’s long, long walk across Tornado Alley. Learn about his tale of ranching heritage and history.  KAN 07-19
07-12-19JOHN & JINA KUGLERBUG HOUNDS– In addition to being “Man’s Best Friend,” dogs also assist people with various physical limitations, and are skilled members of search and rescue teams in the wake of a natural disaster. Learn more about some dogs in Kansas with amazing noses for a particular household insect pest. KAN 07-12
07-05-19PATTERSON HEALTH CENTER– Small town rivalries are nothing new -- they can be found all over America. In Kansas, one big rivalry has been between the towns of Anthony and Harper. Learn how these communities put aside the rivalry to cooperate on one of the best examples of rural health care in America.KAN 07-05
06-28-19MADONNA OF THE TRAIL– When thinking of pioneers traveling west, it’s easy to get lost in all the cowboys and “Indians” portrayed in so many Hollywood movies. However, there was an effort more than 100 years ago to honor an often overlooked pioneer.KAN 06-28
06-21-19CARL PARCHER AND RICHARD GOBLESOUTH HAVEN LP AND SERVICE– Sometimes, the cloud of economic disaster can have a silver lining. Learn about a pair of business partners that took a chance on expansion, while staying faithful to the location and the community that had first supported them.KAN 06-21 
06-14-19STEPHANIE AND DOUG DAVIDBOW CREEK RANCH– Kansas is known for being one of the leading beef cattle states, but one entrepreneur is looking to break into the market with a more exotic bovine. KAN 06-14 
06-07-19TOM CIRCLE– PECANS– Pecans are usually associated with the southern states, especially Texas. But, a family business in southeast Kansas has made the pecan nut its lifeblood for at least three generations.KAN 06-07
05-31-19HEATHER HORTONTOAST– Ron Wilson continues last week’s profile of Pittsburg entrepreneur Heather Horton, who will soon be opening a new business, named after an old childhood favorite. KAN 05-31
05-24-19HEATHER HORTONBLOCK 22– The founders of a southeast Kansas city originally divided up the area into sections they called “blocks.” Learn about an entrepreneur and small business owner who helped resurrect one of these blocks into a thriving artistic community to rejuvenate the downtown area. KAN 05-24
05-17-19ONE MILLION CUPS– It’s a ritual that’s been going on for decades – a sharing that can occur most any time of the day, or night. Find out how this ritual has become the centerpiece of a movement to help budding entrepreneurs realize their dreams. All for the price of…well…listen for yourself. KAN 05-17
05-10-19DARIN MILLERIRON CLAD COWORKING– Entrepreneurs come up with all kinds of innovative ideas that they bring to market. This is the story of one entrepreneur who didn’t develop a tangible product, but a business that helps other businesses find their own success. KAN 05-10
05-03-19POST ROCK 2– ROSSLYN SCHULTZ– A group of community advocates in the Post Rock region of Kansas is turning their passion for limestone architecture into an economic development opportunity. The Post Rock Limestone Coalition is working to get people off the interstate to see the historic limestone buildings found in many rural communities throughout the region. KAN 05-03
04-26-19POST ROCK 1ANGIE MULLER– In the Post Rock region of Kansas, things are on the grow because a community found a way to give economic development projects a little jolt to get going.KAN 04-26
04-19-19MARK NUTSCH– There probably aren’t many people that can say, “Hollywood made a movie about me!” Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, has the story of a native Kansan who is the subject of an action-adventure movie – a story he lived to tell.KAN 04-19 
04-12-19JAN LEONARD– HUGOTON– In far southwest Kansas, there’s a town with connections to gambling, patent medicine, and just maybe, infamous outlaws from the early years of the Great Depression. Find out what happened when one man went digging – literally – into his community’s history.KAN 04-12 
04-05-19ADAM & MAGGIE POUNDS– SIMPLE ABUNDANCE FARM– We’ve all heard the saying, “Big things come in small packages.” A Kansas couple in South Hutchinson is using small parcels of land to generate big harvests -- and their entire operation was founded on an even smaller space.KAN 04-05 
03-29-19JERRY RUMBAUGH/DAN O’NEALSTUDIO 57– A Kansas craftsman who works with fine wood once helped outfit one of the most famous passenger planes in the world. Learn more about this unique opportunity, and how he leveraged those skills for even more intricate works of art.KAN 03-29 
03-22-19RICHARD PITTS– LIVING HISTORY– If you’ve seen any of the “Night at the Museum” movies, you may have wondered what it might be like to talk with someone from hundreds of years ago. Well, you're in luck! An upcoming event is going to allow visitors to experience some very unique “living history.”KAN 03-22
03-15-19TODD STEINBACHAERO-MOD– Water is essential to the survival of all life on our planet, and the conservation and reclamation of water will be very important in the decades ahead. A Kansas entrepreneur has developed a waste water treatment system that can be found all over the world.KAN 03-15
03-08-19TIM PENNERHARPER INDUSTRIES– One of the most outrageous, unique videos on Facebook has more than three million views. Learn more about the Kansas company that put it there.KAN 03-08
03-01-19ALAN VANCEBROCE BROOM– There are many steps in the process of paving a new road. However, a Kansas company has revolutionized one of those steps.KAN 03-01 
02-22-19DUSTY TURNER PEACE PARTY– The town of Cedar Vale has been the site of annual motorcycle rallies, established by a local organizer. These motorcycle rallies also served as the blueprint for another kind of gathering—aimed at mending fences. KAN 02-22
02-15-19DUSTY TURNERMOTO GUZZI– A young man’s love of motorcycles and traveling turned into something of an economic boom for a small Kansas town. What started as a weekend camping trip has become an annual festival with participants from around the globe.KAN 02-15 
02-08-19TRENT BOALDINEPIC TOUCH– High-speed internet access is traditionally thought to be exclusive to large communities. However, thanks to a local entrepreneur with a background in local telephone service, high-speed internet is available in the southwest corner of Kansas.KAN 02-08 
02-01-19LAURA AND RONN MARTINSEW LOVED QUILT SHOP– Most of us probably save one or two treasured Christmas gifts from our childhood, and the rest we lose track of on our journey through life. However, a Kansas woman eventually turned one of her Christmas gifts into a passion, and a successful business.KAN 02-01 
01-25-19KANSAS FIRSTS January 29th is Kansas Day, commemorating the state’s 1861 admission into the Union. Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, offers a rundown of notable Kansas citizens, and their contributions to a better life for us all.KAN 01-25
01-18-19CLARA REYESDOS MUNDOS– For immigrants starting a new life in America, the language barrier can be a challenge. However, one entrepreneur found a way to help Kansas City’s Hispanic community bring two worlds together through communication.KAN 01-18 
01-11-19MIKE PRAY AND JAKE TRUMMERFRIENDSHIP HOUSE– If you’re already milling the flour, why not bake some bread? Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, says that was the philosophy that turned into one of the more successful businesses in northeast Kansas.KAN 01-11
01-04-19BLAKE LYNCH– College football players, especially linemen, often stand more than 6 feet tall and weigh over 300 pounds. This is the story of a Kansas State University player from a small Kansas town who is proving football is also a game for the little guy.KAN 01-04
12-28-18SOUTHEAST KANSAS CHICKEN– The sports rivalry between Kansas State University and the University of Kansas is legendary. However, the rivalry between the fans of two chicken restaurants in southeast Kansas might be just as intense.KAN 12-28
12-21-18RICHARD BAKER– On this special edition of the program, Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, profiles Richard Baker, one of the best-known radio voices in Kansas.KAN 12-21 
12-14-18JOE & CATHY BROECKELMAN– THE SATISFIERS– Farmers and ranchers have long realized the benefits of diversifying their operations. Learn about a family of pork producers who have ventured out of their hog barn and into a bakery.KAN 12-14
12-07-18LONA DUVALL– FINNEY COUNTY– Transloading is the process of transferring a shipment of good from one mode of transportation to another – from a train to a truck, for example. A small project in Garden City has grown to be the largest transloading facility in North America.KAN 12-07
11-30-18DFA MILK PROCESSING– In his ongoing series about the growth of the Kansas dairy industry, Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, explains how the growth of one segment of an industry can spur the growth of the next segment.KAN 11-30
11-23-18wKREDA– Could Kansas be the land of opportunity for a competitive industry? Maybe. A dairy coalition has brought growth to the western Kansas dairy industry by touting the area’s advantages to farmers in other states.KAN 11-23
11-16-18DONNA PEARSON McCLISHCOMMON GROUND– The ground beneath us: we walk on it, drive on it, build on it, and grow food on it. Learn about a teacher and a student who found a way to help the less fortunate in their community, by finding common ground. KAN 11-16
11-09-18ROY AND BOBBI REIMAN– NETAWAKA FITNESS CENTER– ”Kansas Profile” frequently chronicles entrepreneurs and business owners who create a business or product in Kansas. On this edition, Ron Wilson profiles a publishing magnate who came home to Kansas to do something special for his wife’s hometown. KAN 11-09
11-02-18GARDINER ANGUS RANCH (PART 3)– In this third and final program devoted to the history of the Gardiner Ranch, we learn about a recent event that changed the ranch in startling and traumatic fashion. KAN 11-02
10-26-18GARDINERSPREMIUM BEEF (Part 2)– Continuing his look at one of the leading beef cattle ranchers in Kansas, Ron Wilson has the tale of a plan to improve the quality of beef, by encouraging producers to raise their own standards before their cattle even left the ranch.KAN 10-26
10-19-18GARDINER ANGUS RANCH– In the first of a series of profiles, Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, introduces us to one of the premier ranching families in Kansas. They’ve gone from very humble beginnings, to using some of the most innovative technology available.KAN 10-19
10-12-18DAN SENESTRARO– KANSAS DAIRY (Part 4)– To hear Hollywood tell it, people come to California to make their dreams come true. However, one dairy farmer left his home in the “Golden State” to find his dreams among the sunflowers.KAN 10-12
10-05-18BYRON LEHMANKANSAS DAIRY (Part 3)– In the United States, the dairy industry is largely driven by local dairy cooperatives. Ron Wilson tells us about a Kansas dairy farmer who is passing along his passion to the next generation.KAN 10-05
09-28-18STEVE STRICKLER– KANSAS DAIRY (Part 2)– In the second part of his series on the Kansas dairy industry, Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, tells us about a dairy farmer who has always made it a point to be a good neighbor.KAN 09-28
09-21-18STEPHANIE ECKROATKANSAS DAIRY ASSOCIATION COMMISSION– In the first of a four-part series on the dairy industry in Kansas, we meet a woman who has become an industry leader for Kansas.KAN 09-21
09-14-18DENNIS WRIGHTSUNFLOWER OIL– You have probably seen celebrity chefs on TV reaching for E-V-O-O or extra virgin olive oil. Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, introduces us to a Kansas farmer who’s spreading the word about “E-V-S-O.”KAN 09-14 
09-07-18ANJAN GHOSH HAJRA– I3DP– Doctors and surgeons currently use radiographs and magnetic imaging to see inside the human body, but what if a single piece of imaging technology could provide a view from the inside? This is the story of an entrepreneur who has developed a new kind of 3-D technology.KAN 09-07
08-31-18JEAN HARRISON, KIM RINGWALD – Sometimes, your field of view is very important — when you need to get a “birds-eye view” of a large area, for example. Meet a pair of entrepreneurs who are using technology to offer people a bigger view when they need it most.KAN 08-31 
08-24-18MELVIN EPP– REMINGTON– A copy of a famous work of art created by an artist who once lived in Kansas can not only be found in the Oval Office of the White House, but also in the Kansas high school bearing his name. This is the story of the man behind the sculpture and the community’s efforts to honor the legacy of this famous artist.KAN 08-24
08-17-18CORNING COMMUNITY– Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, usually tells us about one specific person, landmark or business that stands out in their local community. This time we hear about a Kansas community where everything and everyone seems a bit above average.KAN 08-17
08-10-18JEFF HAKEJNT– Imagine experiencing the sensation of driving a car at 200 miles per hour, but without ever getting into an automobile. Meet a Kansas entrepreneur who is using virtual reality to help spread the word about his clients.KAN 08-10
08-03-18ROSANNA BAUMANCEDAR VALLEY FARMS– The biggest and best success stories often start off small, and with limited means. This is the story of a farm family who leveraged limited acreage into a fantastic farming success. KAN 08-03
07-27-18ROGER RINGERKANSAS ODDITIES– What do a Turkish princess, a Hollywood rooster and the first helicopter patent all have in common? This is some of the story; for the rest, you’ll have to read the book.KAN 07-27 
07-20-18ABRAM MERTZLIVESTOCK DIRECT– Sometimes you can accomplish more, with less – especially if you know when and where to place your “less.” A marketing specialist is spreading the word about his clients specifically to those who are interested. KAN 07-20
07-13-18JOE, KIM, BOB AND MARY MERTZ (Part 2)– Jeanne and Harold Mertz left a mark on Kansas highways that still stands today, all over the state. And, their sons have carried on the family business with surprising results.KAN 07-13
07-06-18HAROLD AND JEANNE MERTZ (Part 1)  – We encounter all kinds of signs in life: signs that alert us to something, signs that want to sell us something, and signs that try to inform us about something. A Kansas farm couple created signs to inform motorists on Kansas highways about the value of agriculture.KAN 07-06
06-29-18RANDALL TOSHPHOREUS BIOTECH– Sometimes big ideas come in very, very small packages. In fact, a Kansas company is delivering big advancements in packages so small, you can’t even see them.KAN 06-29 
06-22-18PAT HAPPERMERIDEN (PART 2)– We all need the occasional pick-me-up, and for many of us, a good cup of coffee is just the ticket. Learn more about a rural coffee shop that has a unique beginning.KAN 06-22
06-15-18JAKE FARRANTMERIDEN (PART 1)– Football has come a long way since the days of leather helmets, minimal padding, and games played on natural turf. A Kansas entrepreneur is helping football players from high school to the National Football League get a firm footing on the field.KAN 06-15 
06-08-18TED BENDER– BENDER STEEL– A businessman in rural Kansas who learned to weld by taking agricultural education classes in high school says that skill became the basis of his career. KAN 06-08
06-01-18TONY SALCIDOREV-E3– As we continue a slow conversion to a nearly-paperless society, the need to tackle waste paper has also changed. One Kansas entrepreneur is committed to dealing with that growing waste issue.KAN 06-01
05-25-18TIM BROWNNUTRITIONAL CONSULTANT– It’s one thing for a product or business to be known all across their home state – but how about a reputation that spans the globe? Meet a Kansas entrepreneur who had just enough time to tell his story before boarding another transcontinental flight. KAN 05-25
05-18-18TIYA TONNFARM TO FORK– Sometimes, a good meal can go a long way towards bringing people together. In fact, there's a community event that not only brings people together around a good meal, it shows a lot of them just where their food comes from.KAN 05-18 
05-11-18JOEL RUSSELLCODELL CYCLONE DAY (PART 2)– Whoever first uttered, “Lightning never strikes the same place twice,” probably never visited Codell, Kansas. Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development, continues his look at the amazing weather events that occurred there, and how the community is incorporating them into their local history and heritage.KAN 05-11
05-04-18JOEL RUSSELLCODELL CYCLONE DAY (PART 1)– Whoever first uttered, “Lightning never strikes the same place twice,” probably never visited Codell, Kansas. This is the story of the amazing weather events that occurred there and how the community is incorporating them into their local history and heritage. KAN 05-04
04-27-18RAY ESSINGTON– In helping students with their keyboard skills, a rural Kansas high school music teacher is also building on the tradition of one of the world’s most famous musical instructors. Ironically, these two musical people came from the very same hometown.KAN 04-27
04-20-18DOROTHY DeLAY– One of the most famous, sought-after teachers of professional violinists in the world grew up in Kansas. This is the story of a woman who taught the masters.KAN 04-20
04-13-18ZACK SCHAFFERSCHAFFER FURNITURE– One of best-known commentators and personalities from television and the internet recently posted rave reviews about a gift he received. This is the story of the Kansas craftsman behind that gift.KAN 04-13 
04-06-18MARCI PENNERBIG KANSAS ROAD TRIP– The author of what is perhaps the best-known guidebook for the state of Kansas has decided that telling people about things isn’t enough – so she’s going to show them.  KAN 04-06