I’m sure that many readers know Fred Kirschenmann and/or the work being done by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University.
I received the following email late today.
Last week, Fred Kirschenmann was given 48 hours to resign as director of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and to accept a position as the “Distinguished Fellow” of the center. A new director was appointed before Fred was given notice. Over the past five years, Fred has worked tirelessly and with great dedication to the vision and work of the center. He has been highly respected by the Center’s staff.
The reason for Fred’s removal from the directorship of the Center seems clear. Fred had not placated agribusiness. They’ve been ferociously lobbying the dean’s office for the past year and a half to get him to stop his work on Ag in the Middle and other projects that benefit farmers and the land.
The acting dean (Wendy Wintersteen) has caved in to the demands of powerful corporate interests instead of standing for a clear vision for the future and the best interests of Iowa.
Some think that Ms. Wintersteen fired Fred in exchange for the Farm Bureau et. al.’s support for her becoming the next Dean.
Letters can be sent to:
Benjamin J. Allen
Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost
Iowa State University
Office of the Provost, 1550 Beardshear Hall, Ames,
Phone 515-294-9591, firstname.lastname@example.org
Gregory L. Geoffroy
President, Iowa State University
1750 Beardshear Hall
I have corroborated the information as “accurate” with someone close to the Leopold Center. I am working to obtain more information.