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K-State Research and Extension
123 Umberger Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-3401

August 18, 2020

K-State Names Ransom Agronomy Head

Submitted by Susan Schiff

Michel 'Mickey' Ransom

Michel (Mickey) Ransom, who has served as interim head of Kansas State University’s Department of Agronomy since 2018, will transition to department head, according to Ernie Minton, dean of the College of Agriculture.

Recently, Raj Khosla was hired to lead the department and will succeed Ransom in January.

“For more than 35 years, Mickey has been instrumental in making this department a leader in the field of agronomy. The department is among K-State’s top units in terms of annual research expenditures and success in securing extramural funding,” said Minton, who is also director for K-State Research and Extension.

“Mickey has a tremendous commitment to students and talent for teaching. He has already demonstrated the ability to work through complex challenges. This administrative change acknowledges the responsibility and accountability he has already demonstrated and solidifies the full authority he will need to continue to lead the department until Raj Khosla assumes the post.”

Since 2000, he has served as professor and assistant head for teaching responsible for coordinating teaching and advising students. Before being named interim head, Ransom coached the K-State soil judging team for 35 years, winning the national championship twice.

He has received numerous awards for teaching and advising, including the Soil Science Society of America Soil Science Education Award. Ransom is a fellow of the American Society of Agronomy and the Soil Science Society of America and served on the Board of Directors for the Soil Science Society of America. He was an associate editor for the Soil Science Society of America Journal and served as president of K-State’s faculty senate.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in agronomy and master’s degree in soil genesis and classification from the University of Arkansas, Ransom earned a doctorate in soil genesis, classification and mineralogy from The Ohio State University. He is a Registered Professional Soil Classifier (Arkansas) and a Certified Professional Soil Classifier.

“Since the summer of 2018, it has been my privilege to lead the department to continued success working with our world-class faculty, staff and students,” Ransom said. “It is indeed an honor to now be named head of the department as we prepare for the transition to the new head, Raj Khosla.”