June 1, 2001

The agricultural engineering building on the University of Kentucky campus has been officially named in honor of one its most distinguished College of Agriculture administrators.

A plaque bearing the name of Charles E. Barnhart now provides the building with a name that is synonymous with a period of unprecedented growth and accomplishment for the college.

"To recognize Dr. Barnhart in this way is most appropriate," said Dr. Charles T. Wethington, Jr., President of the University of Kentucky. "Because he helped set the gold standard for agricultural research and service to Kentucky's farmers."

The engineering facility was the last in a long list of building projects that Barnhart provided administrative guidance in funding and construction.

During his 19-year tenure as Dean of the College and Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service, all the buildings that comprise the college's presence on the south end the UK campus and key research and education facilities located at both ends of the state were built.

"Dr. Barnhart served the college in various capacities for over 40 years, " noted Wethington. "He firmly believed in the land-grant university philosophy that defined the university as a place of knowledge and opportunity for all citizens of the Commonwealth. He often emphasized that the College of Agriculture belongs to the farmers and people of this state and is operated for them and their benefit."

During his tenure as dean of the college, significant breakthroughs in the containment of equine diseases, forage research for the beef industry and no-tillage cropping systems have generated hundreds of millions of dollars in healthier livestock and more efficient farming practices. The Charles E. Barnhart building currently houses faculty and staff from the departments of Agricultural Economics, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering and the computing section of Ag Communications Services.

"It is very appropriate that this building should be named in Dr. Barnhart's honor," said Larry Turner, Chairman of the Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering department. "The work carried out by the faculty and staff housed here, from the development of satellite based- farming techniques to the latest new crops marketing strategies, is having the kind of impact that Dr. Barnhart emphasized throughout his administration." Barnhart served much of his tenure as Dean of the College under Dr. Otis Singletary, past president of the University of Kentucky.

"I found Dr. Barnhart to be a man of uncommon common sense who sought fair and sensible solutions to real problems," noted Singletary. "Under his leadership, the already solid reputation of the College was strengthened and enhanced."

Dr. Barnhart and his family were on hand for the unveiling ceremonies which included over 200 friends, co-workers and dignitaries representing the university and key farm organizations.