Dean and CEO Ralph Richardson to Retire from K-State Olathe

The next stage of life is beckoning for a lifelong Wildcat – Ralph Richardson, dean and CEO of Kansas State University’s Olathe campus announced this week that he will retire from the position that he has served in for nearly four years. His retirement will be effective some time before July 1, but the University did not specify a date. Additionally, a replacement has not been named, but a search will begin soon.

Although a new dean and CEO has not been chosen, Richardson outlined what he hopes to see in his successor. “It is imperative to focus on succession planning, especially with the new budget model and strategic enrollment management initiatives coming on board,” Richardson said in a statement. “I want the new leader of the Olathe campus to be well prepared to embrace the opportunities that are coming to K-State through engagement with Greater Kansas City.”

Before stepping into the role of dean and CEO, Richardson, who attended K-State himself, was the dean of Kansas State’s College of Veterinary Medicine for nearly 20 years. During these two decades Richardson saw the college enrollment increase, helped to raise more than $72 million for scholarships and professorships, introduced the Veterinary Training Program for Rural Kansas, among other achievements. And during his tenure as dean and CEO of the Olathe campus, Richardson was again not short of accomplishments. Below are highlights from his time with K-State Olathe.

  • The Olathe campus was used by K-State to expand its outreach to Greater Kansas City
  • Numerous partnerships were established to aid in recruiting undergraduates to K-State and working professionals to the Olathe campus
  • Outreach was extended to K-12 schools in Johnson and Wyandotte Counties in order to begin encouraging the students to pursue advanced education
  • Several academic programs were added to the Olathe campus’ class offerings to help address workforce demands in the region
  • The campus collaborated with industry partners in order to increase opportunity in research and education for working adults, graduate students and faculty

“Ralph leaves a distinguished footprint at K-State through his leadership not only as dean and CEO of the Olathe campus, but also in his previous role as dean of the university’s College of Veterinary Medicine,” Richard Myers, Kansas State University president, said in the statement “Ralph has played an active role in moving K-State forward in times of great change for both veterinary medicine and higher education.”