Two Business and Community Leaders Appointed to State Board of Agriculture

Two corporate leaders and advocates of higher education recently were named to the State Board of Agriculture, the governing body of the Colorado State University System.

A. Fred Kerst, former president and chief executive officer of Calgon Corp., a global specialty chemical company; and Charles W. Smith, president and CEO of Parkview Health System in Pueblo, Colo., will be appointed to the board pending confirmation by the state’s Senate.

"The outstanding leadership and business acumen shown throughout the careers of Fred Kerst and Charles Smith will be a welcome addition to the State Board of Agriculture," said Reginald Washington, president of the SBA. "We’re looking forward to tapping into the expertise and enthusiasm of the two new members."

Kerst, who is a Colorado State alumnus, began his 29-year career in industry as a research chemist, followed by progression to positions of increasing responsibility. His 18 years at Calgon included seven years as vice president of Research and Development and five years as vice president of Marketing and Sales. He became president of the corporation in 1989 and retired in 1996.

Kerst received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Colorado State in 1962 and 1963, respectively, and holds a doctorate in chemistry from Harvard.

Smith heads an organization that employs 1,600 employees and exceeds $265 million in gross revenues. Parkview Health System, composed of not-for-profit and for-profit subsidiaries, includes as its main asset the 305-bed Parkview Medical Center in Pueblo.

He served as senior vice president of finance, senior vice president of operations and chief operating officer from 1985-1995, and became president in 1995.

The State Board of Agriculture is the governing board of Colorado State University System, which is comprised of Colorado State University, the University of Southern Colorado in Pueblo and Fort Lewis College in Durango. The board consists of nine voting members appointed by the governor of Colorado and confirmed by the Colorado State Senate, and six elected advisory members.

Kerst and Smith will serve four-year terms.