K-State Alumni Association Awards 1981 Medallion

Posted July 01, 1981

Three individuals — Elizabeth M. Galloway, Walter S. Jones, and John A. Shellenberger — were named recipients of the Kansas State University Alumni Association's Alumni Medallion during commencement exercises in May.

The Medallion is the most prestigious of the alumni association's honors. Nine individuals have received the award since the program was initiated in 1969.

The awards are based on a criterion of humanitarian service to society. Service to Kansas State University is not a requirement. For the purposes of the award, an alumnus is any person who was regularly enrolled at the university and completed at least one semester of work.

The selections were made by a secret panel of prominent KSU alumni and faculty members.

Galloway, who now resides in Topeka, holds two home economics degrees from K-State, a B.S. obtained in 1919 and a masters earned in 1933. She joined the home economics faculty of what is now Prairie View (Texas) A&M in 1923 and retired 41 years later as Dean of the School of Home Economics.

In 1923 the department had only 12 students and the curriculum consisted of cooking and sewing courses. Galloway was instrumental in expanding the curriculum to include institutional management, foods and nutrition, clothing and textiles, art and design, child development and nursery, home management, and other related courses. The school now has an enrollment of more than 300 students.

Prairie View A&M recognized Galloway's contributions by dedicating its new home economics building in her name.

Larry Weigel, executive director of the alumni association, said, "The panel of judges was impressed by the fact that Mrs. Galloway, who is black, was able to achieve so much during a period when it was particularly difficult for blacks and women to progress."

Shellenberger, of Manhattan, is a distinguished professor emeritus of KSU and a world-renowned cereal scientist. He retired in 1970 after 21 years as head of the Department of Flour and Feed Milling (now the Department of Grain Science and Industry), and the building which houses that department now bears his name.

During his tenure the department's curriculum was expanded to include majors in feed and baking science as well as milling, and the department earned international recognition for its program excellence. 

Hi scientific work is documented in more than 200 publications which range across the entire field of cereal chemistry and cereal technology. He also co-authored the well-known textbook, Bread Science and Technology.

The contributions of his research and teaching have significantly influenced not only cereal chemistry, but such areas as flour quality and the protein content of U.S. wheat.

He has been sought for these assignments by the U.S. Departments of State and Agriculture, the United Nations, the Institute of Inter-American Affairs, and numerous private companies.

"Manhattan is recognized as one of the world's leading centers for cereal research because of the facilities located here," Weigel said. "That position is due, in large part, to the dedicated efforts of Dr. Shellenberger."

Jones and his wife, Catherine, of Shawnee, Okla., were among the first couples in Oklahoma City to sponsor foreign exchange students.

Said Weigel, "They brought many foreign students to America and paid for their college educations. They've also financed the educations of many students from the Shawnee-Oklahoma City area who might otherwise never have been able to attend college. A number of those students have earned degrees at Kansas State University."

Jones worked as a real estate developer, and he was instrumental in bringing Tinker Air Force Base to Oklahoma City. He traveled the country, buying the land to be occupied by the base for the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, which then made it available to the city. The base now employs 17,000 people and is one of the largest industries in Oklahoma. He is a major benefactor of KSU. His contributions finance the university’s annual "Classified Employee of the Year" award, and he has been a consistent supporter of athletics and music groups like the Concert Choir, the K-State Singers, and the Marching Band.

"In his quiet way, Walter has made significant contributions to his fellow man and the university," Weigel noted. "He particularly enjoys helping young people advance themselves. His nature is to do things quietly, and I think this award constitutes well-deserved public recognition of his good works."