KWO Logo 

KWO Home

Office (785) 296-3185
Toll-Free (888) 526-9283

Visit us on TwitterLike us on Facebook

Title Graphic

Hosted By: kwo Logo KSU Logo

& Kansas Water Resources Institute

On October 30-31, 2012, the Kansas Water Office, K-State Research and Extension and the Kansas Water Resources Institute hosted the first Governor's Conference on the Future of Water in Kansas. The event was held at the Hilton Garden Inn and Conference Center in Manhattan, Kansas and drew in more than 500 attendees.  Conference speakers and discussion focused on our state's highest priority water resource challenges including conserving and extending the Ogallala Aquifer and securing and restoring storage in our water supply reservoirs.

Please take a moment to fill out the Governor's Conference Survey.  We look forward to your feedback.

Attendance List

Presentations pdf graphic

Presentations from the Topical Sessions Day 2

Algal Blooms & Reservoirs:

Irrigation, Crops & Water Resources:

Impact of Extreme Events & Climate Change on Kansas Water:

WRAPS Projects & Effectiveness:

Sediment Transport & Control:

Ogallala Aquifer: Conditions, Trends & Policies:

Water Infrastructure Development & Sustainability:

WRAPS Projects:

Reservoir Sedimentation:

New Approaches with GIS & Other Technology:

Municipal Water Management:

Hydraulic Fracturing & Emerging Issues:

Conference Sponsors
Reception Level $5,000 Black and Veatch
Burns and McDonnell
Select Energy
Platinum Level $2,500 Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism
Kansas Rural Water Association
Regional Economic Area Partnership - Water Resources Committee
Gold Level $1,500 Kansas Biological Survey
Kansas Department of Agriculture
Kansas Geological Survey
Water District No. 1, Johnson County
SIlver Level $500 BG Consultants
Kansas Bankers Association
Kansas Farm Bureau
State Association of Kansas Watersheds
Tallgrass Brewing Company
Bronze Level $250 Kansas Association of Ethanol Processors
Kansas Chamber of Commerce
Kansas Corporation Commission
Kansas Water Congress
Northwest Kansas Groundwater Management District No. 4
Supporter Kansas Livestock Association

Conference Speakers
Photo Blomquist Dr. William Blomquist is Dean of the School of Liberal Arts, Professor of Political Science, and Adjunct Professor of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI).  He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Indiana University-Bloomington in 1987.  His research interests concern governmental organization and public policies, with a specialization in the field of water institutions and water management.  His publications include Embracing Watershed Politics (2008) with Edella Schlager, Integrated River Basin Management through Decentralization (2006) with Karin Kamper and Ariel Dinar, Common Waters, Common Streams (2004) with Edella Schlager and Tanya Heikkila, and Dividing the Waters (1992)
Photo Lietenant General Thomas P. Bostick USACE

Lieutenant General Thomas P. Bostick, U.S. Army Chief of Engineers and Commanding General of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Lieutenant General Bostick serves as the senior military officer overseeing most of the Nation’s civil works infrastructure and military construction.

As the USACE Commanding General, he is responsible for more than 37,000 Civilian employees and 600 Military personnel who provide project management and construction support to 250 Army and Air Force installations in more than 100 countries around the world. USACE has a key role in support to Overseas Contingency Operations, with thousands of Civilians and Soldiers having deployed to support reconstruction in Iraq and Afghanistan. Lieutenant General Bostick is also responsible for USACE's diverse missions such as hundreds of environmental protection projects; regulatory permit program to protect, restore and enhance thousands of acres of wetlands; and emergency response mission to support the Federal Emergency Management Agency in restoration and repair after a disaster, whether natural or manmade. As the Chief of Engineers, Army Staff Principal, the Chief advises the Army on engineering matters and serves as the Army's topographer and the proponent for real estate and other related engineering programs.

Photo Rex Buchanan KGS Rex Buchanan grew up near Little River, in Rice County, Kansas, on the edge of the Smoky Hills.  He has an undergraduate degree from Kansas Wesleyan University and graduate degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has been at the Kansas Geological Survey, based at the University of Kansas, since 1978, and is currently the Interim Director. He is the co-author of Roadside Kansas: A Guide to its Geology and Landmarks  (rev. edition, 2010) and editor of Kansas Geology: An Introduction to Landscapes, Rocks, Minerals, and Fossils  (rev. edition, 2010), both published by the University Press of Kansas; co-author of The Canyon Revisited: A Rephotography of the Grand Canyon, 1923-1991, published by the University of Utah Press (1994); co-editor of Geowriting, published by the American Geological Institute (1995); and co-compiler of Kansas Groundwater, published by the Kansas Geological Survey (1993).  He has been president of the Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education (KACEE), the Kansas Academy of Science, and the Association of Earth Science Editors.  In 2008 he was named a Fellow of the Geological Society of America, and in 2009 was given the John Strickler award for environmental education from KACEE.
Photo Scott Foote Scott Foote,works with his family’s business as manager of Hoxie Feedyard in Hoxie, KS.  Scott attended Kansas State University and graduated with a degree in Agricultural Economics in 1997 and moved to Hoxie that year.  Scott has four kids with his wife, Michelle.  Scott and Michelle and their family are active in several community organizations and businesses.

Wayne Gieselman, Deputy Director, Water, Wetlands and Pesticides Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Wayne has served as Deputy Director of EPA Region 7’s Water Division since January, 2012.  Prior to joining the Water Division, Wayne served for 9 years as the Administrator of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources from 2002-2011 and was the CAFO Coordinator at IDNR prior to that from 1999-2002.  Wayne was a farm owner and operator from 1982-1999 and is still actively involved in the farming operation with his son. He served as Chief Engineer for the Iowa Natural Resources Council from 1978-1982.  Wayne received a BS degree in agricultural engineering from Iowa State University.

Photo Dr. Bill Golden KSU Bill Golden assists farmers, policy makers, and other stakeholders throughout Kansas in developing and implementing policies associated with the State’s natural resources. He also works extensively with land-water-related issues such as valuing irrigation water rights. Current research and extension efforts are evaluating producer and community impacts associated with alternative water conservation policies and the impacts of climate change on our water resources.
Photo Greg Graff KWA Greg Graff is a lifetime resident of Leoti, Kansas and Wichita County.  He attended Wichita County High School and graduated from Kansas State University in 1973 with a B.S. in Agricultural Mechanization.Following graduation at K-State, he returned to Leoti to farm and feed cattle with his father Vic and brother Gary. Graff has served on and been chairman of several boards including the Scott Coop Association, SW KS Experiment State Advisroy Board, Groundwater Management District No. 1 and the Western Kansas Modification Board.

He currently serves on the Kansas Grain Sorghum Commission which helps to fund sorghum research at K-State. Graff is also the Kansas sorghum representation to the U.S. Grains Council doing foreign market development for grain sorghum. He has also been involved with ethanol as well as food grade grain sorghum.
Photo Gary Harshberger KWA Gary Harshberger, Chairman Kansas Water Authority, is a lifetime resident of Ford County, graduated from Minneola High School attended Dodge City Community College and Kansas State University. He earned his Computer and Electrical Engineering Degree from KSU in 1987. He returned to Ford County and started Double H Farms in 1988, which now has farm interest in Ford, Clark and Meade Counties. He also serves on the board of directors for Farm Credit of Southwest Kansas Bonanza BioEnergy and Arkalon Energy.
Photo Mike Hightower Mike Hightower is a Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff in the Energy Surety Engineering and Analysis Department at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  He is a civil and environmental engineer and has over 35 years of experience in research and development projects.  His current efforts include research and evaluation of innovative environmental and energy technologies and security and protection of critical water and energy infrastructures.  From 2003 through 2007 with the Bureau of Reclamation and the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute, he co-led a team of federal and municipal water officials and researchers in developing the U.S. Brackish Groundwater National Desalination Research Facility in Alamogordo, NM.  In 2006, with scientists from Sandia, Los Alamos National Laboratory, the National Energy Technology Laboratory, and the Electric Power Research Institute, he helped write a Report to Congress on the emerging issue of energy and water interdependencies and challenges.  This report has become a major resource in quantifying growing global concerns over climate impacts on water, energy, and food development and sustainability.  He is currently conducting research on the use of distributed and renewable energy technologies and distributed water and waste water systems to enhance sustainable economic development and global public health and security.

Mike holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in civil engineering from New Mexico State University.  He serves on the Board of Directors for Citizens for Responsible Energy, is past-chair of the American Society of Mechanical Engineer’s Environmental Engineering Division and co-chair of ASME’s Energy Water Interdisciplinary Council.  Mike has published over 100 technical papers including articles in NATURE, three Reports to Congress, and authored chapters in two books, one on advanced desalination and the other on energy and water challenges.
Photo Colonel Hofmann

Colonel Anthony J. "Tony" Hofmann enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1984 and graduated from the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School in 1986. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers after graduating from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1990. Colonel Hofmann holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from the U.S. Military Academy, a Master of Science Degree in Construction Management from Colorado State University and a Master of Science Degree in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. He is a certified Project Management Professional.

Colonel Hofmann has held a variety of troop assignments, primarily in divisional mechanized combat engineer battalions. He served as a lieutenant in the 10th Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division in Kitzingen, Germany as well as the 40th Engineer Battalion, 1st Armored Division, in Baumholder, Germany; commanded Alpha Company as well as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 4th Engineer Battalion, Fort Carson, Colorado; and was the operations officer in both the 937th Engineer Group and 70th Engineer Battalion, 1st Armored Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. He also served in the Army’s Senior Leader Development Office in Rosslyn, Virginia as the assignment officer for Chemical, Engineer and Military Police colonels.

His combat and operational experience includes Operation Iraqi Freedom supporting the 3rd Infantry and 1st Armored Divisions; Intrinsic Action in Kuwait with 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division; and deployment to Kuwait in support of Task Force 3-77 Armor, 3rd Infantry Division.

This is Colonel Hofmann’s third tour with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. From 2006 to 2008 he commanded the Walla Walla District, responsible for the execution of a diverse civil works program over 107,000 square mile area encompassing parts of six states. Earlier he served in the New Orleans District as a project engineer, project manager and Chief of Safety, Security and Occupational Health.

Colonel Hofmann’s military education includes the Engineer Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, and the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal (two awards), the Army Meritorious Service Medal (five awards), the Army Commendation Medal (four awards, including Valor Device), the Army Achievement Medal (four awards), the Army Good Conduct Medal, the Southwest Asia Service Medal with service star, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Medal for the Liberation of Kuwait, the Bronze Order of the DeFleury Medal, the German Armed Forces Efficiency Badge (Silver), Parachutist Badge, Army Staff Identification Badge, Ranger Tab and the Combat Action Badge.

Photo Steve Irsik Steve Irsik is general partner of Irsik Equities, LP, a family owned agricultural business headquartered near Garden City, Kans. He holds a bachelor's degree in agricultural economics and is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force. Steve was nominated to the Beef Board by the Kansas Livestock Association (KLA), the Kansas Cattlemen's Association, the Kansas Dairy Association, and the Kansas Farm Bureau, and is active in KLA, as well as the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and Dairy Farmers of America. Irsik Equities involves significant irrigated and dryland farming interests, a native grass ranch, commercial cows, dairy, commercial cattle feeding, feed milling, interests in wheat and oats milling, plus further processing and commercial banking.
Photo Steven Iverson  Steven K. Iverson is Deputy District Engineer for Project Management and, concurrently, Chief, Programs, Planning and Project Management Division of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District.

Iverson came to the Kansas City District in 1990 from the New York District, where he served as the Project Management Section Chief in the Construction Division.

Iverson holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the South Dakota State University, and has completed course work towards a master’s degree in business administration under the Defense Leadership and Management Program. He is a registered professional engineer in the state of New Jersey, a Certified Project Management Professional and a member of the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME).

Over the course of a 28 year career with the Corps of Engineers, Iverson has held positions in several districts. Early in his career, Iverson executed designs for military and civil works projects in the northeast. His past assignments include Chief, EPA Management Section, New York District; Chief, Civil HTRW Section, Baltimore District; Civil Design Engineer; Special Assistant to the New Jersey Area Engineer; Program Manager for the Formerly Used Defense Sites Program, Program Manager for the Total Environmental Restoration Contract; and Chairman of the Kansas City District Leadership Development Program. His last position was the Chief, Civil Works Branch, Kansas City District.

Mr. Iverson was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, is married to the former Patty Sheehan of Long Island, New York, and has three daughters, ages 15, 17 and 19. 
Photo Robin Jennison

Robin Jennison brings more than 22 years of experience; serving in the Kansas Legislature, influencing state policy on behalf of Kansas interests, and promoting the state’s natural assets to expand outdoor recreations. 

Elected to represent the 117th House District, Robin quickly rose through the ranks, serving as Assistant Majority leader in his second term, Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee in his third term, House Majority Leader in his fourth term and finally, Speaker of the House. 

As president of Jennison Government Services, Robin represented businesses, associations, groups and other entities before the state legislature and regulatory agencies of Kansas.  Robin is a well-respected and knowledgeable hunter who anchored the Kansas Outdoors Radio Show for four years. 

Robin was selected by Governor Sam Brownback to serve as the Secretary of Wildlife and Parks, which became the Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism on July 1, 2011.  He has been a partner in the Jennison Ranch located near Healy for more than 33 years. Robin is married to Coleen Jennison, Director of Government Affairs for Cox Communications, and has two grown children and one granddaughter. 

Photo Brigadier Gen. Kula Brigadier General Thomas W. Kula became the Commander and Division Engineer, U.S. Army Engineer Division, Southwestern, July 2, 2010. The Southwestern Division is a 3,200-person engineering and construction organization,
including four district offices located in Little Rock, Ark., Tulsa, Okla., and Fort Worth and Galveston, Texas. The division area covers all or part of seven states, with annual programs totaling $5.4 billion.

Kula was born in North Chicago, Ill. He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Corps of Engineers and awarded a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering upon graduation from the United States Military Academy in 1982. He holds a Master's Degree in Military Arts and Science from the School of Advanced Military Studies, Command and General Staff College. His previous assignments include: Platoon Leader, Battalion S-1, and Company Commander, 78th Engineer Battalion (Corps)(Combat), Ettlingen, Germany; Senior Engineer Observer Controller, Joint Readiness Training Center, Fort Chaffee, Arkansas; Doctrine Writer and Tactics Instructor, US Army Engineer School and Aide de Camp to the Commanding General, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri; Chief of G-3 Plans, 82d Airborne Division and Executive Officer, 307th Engineer Battalion (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Military Assistant to the Undersecretary of the Army and Program Analyst for Force Structure, Program Analysis and Evaluation Directorate, the Pentagon, Washington DC; Commander, 307th Engineer Battalion (Airborne), 82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Engineer Plans Officer, United States Southern Command, Miami, Florida; Commander, 130th Engineer Brigade, V Corps, Hanau, Germany (OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM 05-07, IRAQ, September 2005- September 2006); Co-Chair of the TRADOC Improvised Explosive Device (IED) Defeat, Integrated Capabilities Development Team and Chief of Staff, Maneuver Support Center of Excellence, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.

Kula's military education includes the Engineer Officer Basic Course, Infantry Officer Advanced Course, Combined Arms Service and Staff School (CAS3), Command and General Staff College (CGSC), School of Advanced Military Studies (SAMS), and U.S. Army War College Fellowship at University of Texas.

His awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit (with two oak leaf clusters), the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (with five oak leaf clusters), the Army Commendation Medal (with one oak leaf cluster), the Army Achievement Medal (with one oak leaf cluster), the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Combat Action Badge, the Ranger Tab, the Sapper Tab, the Master Parachutist Badge, the Pathfinder Badge, the German Parachutist Badge, and the Army Staff Badge.
Photo Brad Loveless

Brad Loveless was raised in Ohio and received a B.S. from The Ohio State University in Zoology and a M.S. from Kansas University in Biology. I’ve worked for Westar Energy for 25 years, the first 12 being at Wolf Creek Nuclear Station. Since then, I’ve worked from Topeka and been focused on avoidance of environmental impacts through proper design and siting of electrical generation and distribution facilities, and mitigation of those impacts, when they occur. I help plan company actions to address climate change and to lead the Green Team, a volunteer group of employees and retirees that have been helping with habitat improvement, environmental access and education, and enhancement of sensitive species for over 20 years.

I am married to Mindy, who teaches school, have 3 boys, and enjoy working on church initiatives, fishing, hunting, and gardening.

Photo Tim Lust

Tim Lust is the CEO of the National Sorghum Producers (NSP) and the United Sorghum Checkoff Program (USCP), two organizations dedicated to increasing profitability for more than 30,000 sorghum growers in the United States. For NSP, he works directly on legislative and regulatory issues that impact the sorghum industry and represents the industry at events throughout the United States and worldwide. For the Sorghum Checkoff, Tim works directly with producers, researchers and marketing specialists to increase producer profitability and keep the sorghum industry competitive among the world marketplace.

Tim grew up on a diversified farming and cattle operation in Lazbuddie, Texas. He received a B.S. in Animal Science in 1992 from Angelo State University and an MBA in 1993 from Texas Tech University. He is a past member of the United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Advisory Committee for Trade to the Secretary of Agriculture and a former board member for the USDA Sorghum Crop Germplasm Committee. He has also served on the Texas Tech Center for Industry Research and Education board of directors and the Sorghum Improvement Conference of North America board of directors. Today, Tim serves on numerous industry and regional committees and advisory councils.

Throughout his career, Tim has been instrumental in helping to advance the U.S. sorghum industry. His work in the legislative arena has resulted in increased sorghum price elections for farmers, equalized loan rates for sorghum, and the inclusion of sorghum as an advanced biofuel in the 2007 U.S. Energy Bill. Tim was extremely involved with the startup of the national checkoff program to increase sorghum research and market development. Tim has also been a strong supporter of the Great Plains Sorghum Initiative, a program that supports research in the agricultural economics, communications and agronomy departments annually.

 Tim and his wife of 22 years, Lea Ann, have two sons, Ty and Dru, and reside in Abernathy, Texas.

Steve McNinch, CEO, Western Plains Energy has over 20 years of manufacturing and management experience in fields ranging from home products, automotive, defense supplier, and most recently ethanol. Mr. McNinch is Past-Chairman of the Kansas Association of Ethanol Processors. As an officer on the Board of Directors of Growth Energy, he has been active in the continued promotion of ethanol. Mr. McNinch holds degrees in Chemistry and Physics and an M.B.A. from Southwestern College in Winfield, Kan.

Photo John Mitchell John Mitchell  joined Burns & McDonnell in 1988. Since then, he has served in varying capacities including Project Engineer, Project Manager, and Wastewater Department Manager. Mr. Mitchell became a Principal of the firm in 2004. He currently serves as the Director of Burns & McDonnell’s National Water Process and Technology Group.   Over the past 24 years, Mr. Mitchell has been involved in nearly every wastewater project undertaken by Burns & McDonnell in the Kansas City area and most wet weather programs in EPA Region 7.  John has served on the Board of Directors and as a Vice President of ACEC of Kansas; he also served as President of the KC Metropolitan Chapter of WEA. He received his BSCE from University of Missouri at Rolla and is licensed in both Kansas and Missouri.
Photo Bill Murphy USDA William J. Murphy, Administrator, Risk Management Agency, United States Department of Agriculture. William J. Murphy is Administrator of the Risk Management Agency (RMA), U.S. Department of Agriculture, which provides economic protection and risk management tools to America’s farmers and ranchers primarily through federally sponsored crop insurance delivered and serviced by private insurance companies. In this capacity, he is also Manager of the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC), and a non-voting member of the FCIC Board of Directors.

Murphy has spent over 30 years in the Federal crop insurance community and he brings hands-on expertise and executive management to RMA’s lead position. He most recently served as RMA Acting Administrator during the transition to the Obama Administration. Before that, he served RMA as the Deputy Administrator for Insurance Services; Director of the Regional Office in Davis, Calif., overseeing crop insurance operations in California, Utah, Nevada, Arizona and Hawaii; and Director of the Western Region Compliance Office.

A native of Pennsylvania, Mr. Murphy holds a Bachelor of Science degree with an emphasis in Agronomy and Farm Management from Pennsylvania State University.
Photo Sarah Hill_Nelson Sarah Hill-Nelson is the Owner/Operator of The Bowersock Mills and Power Company, a run of river, certified low-impact hydroelectric plant located on the Kansas River in Lawrence, Kansas. Ms. Hill-Nelson is the fifth generation of the Hill family to own and operate The Bowersock Mills and Power Company. She is the President and CEO of the company, and manages the company operations along with her father, Stephen Hill. In 2010, Bowersock received a FERC license to expand the Kansas River Project through the construction of a new powerhouse, expanding site operations from 2.35 MW to 7MW. Ms. Hill-Nelson managed the BMPC FERC license effort, coordinating with federal, state, and local agencies and NGOs to ensure an efficient licensing process. On an ongoing basis, Ms. Hill-Nelson acts as the primary manager of BMPC operations, including all business relationships and FERC compliance. Ms. Hill-Nelson was one of the first Kansas energy business leaders to leverage renewable attributes through Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs or Green Tags). She has also been actively involved in legislative issues relating to renewable energy. Prior to her current position, Sarah worked as a research analyst, and, early in her career, as a history teacher. She graduated magna cum laude from Bowdoin College in 1992, was a Kansas Truman Scholar, is fluent in Spanish, and earned a master’s degree in history from the University of Washington in 1995, and a Master’s in Teaching from Seattle University in 1997. Ms. Hill-Nelson is active in the Lawrence community. She is a member of the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, is active in her children's school communities and has served in leadership positions on several boards, including as President of the Douglas County CASA Board, and Vice President of the City of Lawrence Sustainability Advisory Board. Ms. Hill-Nelson is married to Eric Nelson, and they have two children, ages eight and ten.
Photo John O'Neil

John O’Neil has been with Johnson County Wastewater since 1989, first as the Director Operations and Maintenance and in February 2006 as Wastewater General Manager.

As Wastewater General Manager, Mr. O’Neil oversees all aspects of the wastewater utility, including the Operations and Maintenance, Business Operations and Planning, and Customer Relations Divisions. Engineering functions are divided between the Operations and Maintenance and Customer Relations Divisions.

Johnson County Wastewater has 218 employees, an annual operating budget for 2011 of $37 million and an annual capital program of $70 million. Johnson County is on the southwest part of the metropolitan Kansas City area and has a growing population of approximately 550,000.

As Operations and Maintenance Director, Mr. O’Neil emphasized cross training and removing barriers between the operations functions and the maintenance functions. As General Manager, following recommendations of a recently completed Strategic Business Plan, he is coordinating the building of strong bridges between the three department divisions to provide a unified level and quality of service to all customers.

Mr. O’Neil has a Master of Education Degree from Kansas State University and a Masters of Environmental Health Science from the University of Kansas. He holds the highest level of certification for both Collections System and Wastewater Treatment Operation in the state of Kansas. 

Photo Rorik Peterson EDP

Rorik Peterson is a Project Developer with EDP Renewables North America in Overland Park, Kansas.  Since joining EDPR in 2008, Rorik has managed multiple wind projects under development across Kansas and the central United States.  His responsibilities include negotiating wind energy leases with landowners, working with local, state, and federal regulatory entities on permitting matters, meeting with elected officials and policymakers, and maintaining relationships with potential power customers.  He received a BA in Geography from Kansas State University in 2005 and a MA in Geography from Kansas State University in 2008.  Rorik grew up in Wamego, Kansas, and now resides in Overland Park. 

Photo Senator Pat Roberts

U.S. Senator Pat Roberts is a Kansan through and through. He was born in Topeka, graduated from Holton High School and went on to earn his journalism degree from K-State – and proudly wears the purple to this day. He always puts Kansas’ needs and concerns front and center in his public service career. For 16 years, he represented the Big First District, including his home of Dodge City, in the U.S. House of Representatives. In 1996, he was elected to the U.S. Senate. He is currently serving his third term.

Roberts has built a reputation as a national leader in agriculture, health care and defense. He is an advocate of a strong education system, free and fair trade policies, increased investment in science and technology, a focused foreign policy and a strong military — all of which are necessary to keep Kansas competitive in today's rapidly evolving global marketplace.

Senator Roberts serves as the ranking member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, becoming the first in history to hold the post in both the House and the Senate.

Photo Dale Rodman

Dale A. Rodman was appointed secretary of the Kansas Department of Agriculture by Governor Sam Brownback in January 2011.

A native Kansan, Rodman was born in Eureka and grew up on a diversified farm and ranch near Toronto. His family raised cattle, wheat, soybeans, hay, and sorghum. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture in feed milling from Kansas State University in 1963. He later graduated from the Minnesota Management Institute at the University of Minnesota.

Rodman served as an agribusiness executive in national and international agriculture development and management for the majority of his career. He worked for 37 years at Cargill, Inc. and gained experience in a number of agribusiness industries including milling, grain product processing, and meat slaughter and processing. Rodman spent 4 years as president of Tramco, Inc. a manufacturer of heavy duty dry bulk conveying systems located in Wichita. During his career, he lived in Europe and Asia and worked in over thirty countries.

In the 1990s, he worked with then-Secretary of Agriculture Sam Brownback as a member of an agricultural advisory board.

Rodman left retirement at the request of Governor Brownback to serve the Kansas agricultural industry. He is personally committed to building Kansas agriculture and developing opportunities to grow the state's agricultural economy. In addition, he is focused on strengthening the Department of Agriculture and revitalizing the Department's focus on serving Kansas' producers and consumers.

Photo Dennis Schwartz Dennis Schwartz has been the General Manager for Shawnee County Rural Water District No. 8 for 36 years.  He has served for 21 years on the Kansas Water Authority and is currently the Chair of the Public Water Supply Committee.  Dennis has served in various capacities for the Kansas Rural Water Association for 35 years. He currently serves as the Vice President. He has served as the Director of the National Rural Water Association for more than 20 years including 2 years as President.  He is  also an active member of the American Water Works Association and Water Industry Coordinating Council, and served on the U.S. EPA's National Drinking Water Advisory Council. He is the recipient of numerous state and national water industry awards including the Kansas Water Authority Fox Award.  Dennis and his wife Sharon reside in Tecumseh, Kansas.
Photo Robert Stanbery

Robert (Bob) Stanbery is the Production Technology Team Lead for Shell Exploration and Production Company – Onshore Asset Arrowhead Project in Kansas. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University and his Masters of Business Administration from the University of Houston. Bob has sixteen years experience in the oil industry with various assignments including tertiary oil recovery projects, offshore and onshore completions, production surveillance, operations and engineering management.

Photo Tracy Streeter KWO

Tracy Streeter has served as the Director of the Kansas Water Office, the state’s water planning and coordination agency since 2004.  Tracy was re-appointed by Governor Sam Brownback on December 31, 2010.  Before joining KWO, he served as Executive Director of the State Conservation Commission. Tracy has 26 years of experience in Kansas water resources management. 

Tracy serves as Chair of the Governor’s Drought Response Team and the Kansas GIS policy Board.  In addition, Tracy represents the State of Kansas on the Missouri River Association of States and Tribes (MoRAST) and Western States Water Council. 

A native Kansan, Tracy grew up as part of a family farming operation in Brown County.  He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture and Agriculture Economics from Missouri Western State University and a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Kansas.

Photo Steve Swaffer KFB

Steve Swaffar has worked for Kansas Farm Bureau since November of 2000 as Natural Resources Director. Steve and his staff address natural resource policy and technical issues for their farmer and rancher members. Steve assists agricultural producers to assess and find solutions to environmental and conservation issues on their farms and ranches; works with state and federal agency staff on regulatory actions; provides advice to farmers about wildlife management; and provides assistance with various permits required by regulatory agencies. He also is works with the Kansas legislature and lobbies on natural resources and environmental bills.

Prior to joining Farm Bureau worked four years with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. Steve holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in biology from the University of Kansas.  Steve also serves on the board of several non-profit natural resources and environmental education organizations.

Steve and his family live in Rossville, Kansas.

Photo Colonel Teague

Colonel Michael J. Teague received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from Norwich University and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Corps of Engineers in 1985.

Upon completion of the Officer Basic Course, he served in Bravo Company, 10th Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division, in Bad Kissingen, Germany, as a Line Platoon Leader, Assault and Barrier Platoon Leader, and Executive Officer (XO). After attending the Officer Advanced Course, he served with the 19th Engineer Battalion, 194th Separate Armor Brigade at Fort Knox, Kentucky, before assuming command of the 13th Engineer Company (Construction Support) in 1990. During the two years he commanded the 13th Engineer Company, they deployed to construction missions in Honduras and Saudi Arabia, as well as forest firefighting in Tennessee.

From 1992 to 1994, Colonel Teague attended the Naval Postgraduate and received a Master of Science Degree in Operations Analysis. He completed assignments as a Combat Analyst with the TRADOC Analysis Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and as a Personnel Analyst with the OPMS XXI Task Force at PERSCOM. After serving as the Executive Officer, Directorate of Civil Works for Headquarters, US Army Corps of Engineers, he attended Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth.

Following Staff College, he was assigned to Fort Carson, Colorado, where he served as the S3 and XO of the 4th Engineer Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division. After assignments as the Force Engineer (South), Multinational Forces and Observers, Sinai, Egypt, and as the Chief of Current Operations, US Army Space Command at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, he returned to Fort Carson.

On July 8, 2003, Colonel Teague assumed command of the 52nd Engineer Battalion (Combat Heavy) in Mosul, Iraq. The Battalion conducted construction, civil-military, and combat operations in support of the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Battalion redeployed in February 2004. After command, he served as the Army Engineer for North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and US Northern Command and as the Deputy Executive Officer to the Combatant Commander. After this joint assignment, he attended the Naval War College where he earned a Master of Science degree in National Security and Strategic Studies. Before taking command of the Tulsa District, he was the Third Army/US Army Central Engineer responsible for Army construction throughout the Middle East and central Asian states.

His awards and decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Global War on Terrorism and the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medals, the Iraqi Campaign Medal, the Southwest Asia Service Medal, the Kuwaiti Liberation Medal and the Combat Action and Parachutist Badges.

Photo Frank Ward NMSU

Frank Ward is a Professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Agricultural Business at New Mexico State University and the Departmental Coordinator for MS and PhD in Water Science and Management Programs. He holds a BS, MS, and PhD in Economics from Colorado State University.

Ward's expertise is water policy. He is the author of numerous journal articles, research reports, and book chapters. Ward has written two books: Valuing Nature with Travel Cost Models. 2000 with D.J. Beal published by Edward Elgar (UK) and Environmental and Natural Resource Economics by Prentice-Hall, scheduled for 2005.

Ward teaches Water Resource Economics and Natural Resource Economics.



Current News

2013 - Govenor's Annual Conference on the Future of Water in Kansas will be held:
 October 24-25, 2013
at the
Hilton Garden Inn &
Conference Center
Manhattan, KS

Conference Survey

Attendance List


Conference Map