Colorado State Soil and Crop Sciences Unit Honors Alumni

Three graduates of Colorado State University’s soil and crop sciences department were honored at a ceremony and luncheon early this month for their contributions to the field.

The three were Walt Federer, Charles "Bud" Rumburg and Glen Murray.

Federer is a Liberty Hyde Bailey Professor Emeritus of biological statistics at Cornell University. A 1933 graduate of Cheyenne High School, he earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Colorado State in 1939, a master’s from Kansas State University in 1941 and a doctorate in mathematical statistics from Iowa State University in 1948.

Federer’s textbook on experimental design, first published in 1955, has remained a basic text in the field. His honors and awards include Fellow, American Statistical Association; Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science; Fellow, Royal Statistical Society; Fellow, Institute of Mathematical Statistics; the Honor Alumnus Award from Colorado State in 1972; and the Distinguished Service in Agriculture Award from Kansas State in 1988.

Rumburg recently retired as executive vice president of the Society for Range Management, based in Denver. He graduated from Montezuma County High School in Cortez in 1950. After attending Fort Lewis College, Rumburg transferred to Colorado State and earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy in 1954. He earned a master’s degree in 1956 and a doctorate in 1958, both in plant science, from Rutgers University.

In 1970, he transferred to the Mountain Meadow Research Center in Gunnison and two years later was appointed superintendent. In 1977, he was named principal agronomist, Cooperative States Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture in Washington, D.C., where he was responsible for on-site reviews of research programs throughout the country. In 1985, Rumburg was appointed deputy administrator for natural resources, food and social sciences, where he oversaw leadership and support for research programs in soil, water, agricultural engineering, range, forestry, agricultural and natural resource economics, human nutrition, food science, rural sociology and home economics.

Murray, president of Murray Farms, Inc. and Murray Implement, Inc. in Brighton, graduated from Brighton High School in 1968. He earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Colorado State in 1972. In his senior year he won the Scotty Robertson Award for outstanding agronomy student. A life member of the Colorado State Alumni Association, he returned to the family farm near Brighton and is manager of retail sales, farm manager and a seed salesman.

He is past president, Adams County Farmers Union, and past board member, Colorado Corn Administrative Committee. In 1993, he was named Outstanding Contributor to Area Agriculture by the Adams County Agriculture Committee. Murray currently is chairman of the Colorado Agriculture Commission and has been one of nine members since being appointed by the governor in 1992. Murray also serves on the Colorado Insight Committee, which reports to the State Department of Agriculture and assists the agriculture commissioner in coordinating the various agricultural commodity groups. He serves on the Adams County Extension Advisory Committee, the Wellington Reservoir Board, the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union and the Colorado Farm Bureau.