K-State President Duane Acker

Duane Acker1975-1986

President emeritus Duane Acker recently said, “Though most credit should go to others, there are many accomplishments of which I’m considerably proud that happened during my years in the presidency at Kansas State University.”

During Acker’s tenure, the Chester E. Peters Recreation Complex was dedicated and the university joined the National Merit Scholarship Program.

Acker also recalls two instances in which the university successfully tested the right of controversial speakers to be heard, including former Rhodesian President Ian Smith and Saudi Arabian Oil Minister Sheik Yamani. He fondly remembers Red Skelton’s performance at Ahearn Field House and watching the legendary comedian individually engage students, faculty and alumni at the President’s Residence.

In his memoir, Two at a Time, Acker wrote, “I think of a university’s leadership as a continuum: successive leaders advancing their university toward its purpose and goals in accord with the circumstances of the time.”