Dr. C. Eugene Allen

(KNFP-09 Advisor)

Focus Areas

Higher Education
Food Systems
Food Systems
Leadership Development


Dr. C. Eugene (Gene) Allen's contributions during a 43-year career in teaching, research, outreach and administration coupled with his visionary leadership served students and constituents, higher education, his professional organizations and the University of Minnesota in many ways. He received the UMn's highest teaching award and multiple national research and service awards. He has been an invited speaker for more than 200 programs outside the state of Minnesota and for many years gave 50-75 speeches annually within Minnesota. Examples Include a wide variety of science and technology topics, outreach, interdisciplinary, leadership and international programs, plus the evolution of higher education and the land grant university in addressing societal needs. In addition, he has served on 20 program review teams, 16 Boards of Directors/Advisors and 17 national or international award committees. He served for five years as an advisor to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation's National Fellowship Program on leadership where he worked directly with Class IX. His most extensive international experience has been in Australia, Morocco and China plus work in 14 other countries through research, lectures and program reviews. He served on the Board of Directors of MUCIA (Midwestern Universities Consortium for International Activities) for 17 years and as chair of the USAID Bean/Cowpea Cooperative Research Program (CRSP) in the early 1990's, which at the time had programs in about a dozen countries. He also served on the National Academy of Science's (NAS) Board on Agriculture and has been an invited speaker for numerous NAS symposias. Since 2002, he has been a regular lecturer in the Mingda (UMn) Leadership Workshop program for hundreds of Chinese professors and administrators, and has consulted in China on higher education topics. Gene is an honorary faculty member of Hassan II University in Rabat, Morocco, and in 2012 became an Honorary Professor of Beijing University of Technology. In 1989, he was honored as a Distinguished Centennial Alum of the University of Idaho, and in 2013 the University of Minnesota established the "C. Eugene Allen Award for Innovative International Initiatives" to recognize his special contributions and to encourage others to do the same. After serving the UMn as a professor, dean, vice president, provost and associate vice president, Gene retired in 2009 as Emeritus Dean & Distinguished Teaching Professor. He lives in St. Paul area and as of 2017 continues to consult in workshop programs, etc.