Renowned food scientist and academic leader John Floros became dean of the College of Agriculture and director of K-State Research and Extension in July 2012. Since then, he has led the development of a College of Agriculture strategic plan for Vision 2025, guided the college to record student enrollments, retention and graduation, and nearly 100% placement. As director, he steered K-State Research and Extension – an entity with faculty and staff in five colleges: Agriculture, Arts & Sciences, Engineering, Human Ecology, and Veterinary Medicine – to record extramural funding, with research expenditures of more than $105 Million. Under his leadership the College of Agriculture established the first ever NSF supported Center on Wheat Genomics; and four new Feed-the-Future Labs from USAID on wheat, sorghum and millet, postharvest loss reduction, and sustainable intensification, for a total investment of more than $100M in five years. Niche ranked K-State’s College of Agriculture 4th in the nation in 2017.
Floros’ research work spans the application of chemical engineering science, applied mathematics and industrial statistics to the field of food science, food process engineering and food packaging. He has written more than 220 scientific articles, book chapters, abstracts and other publications, and delivered more than 350 invited presentations around the world.
His research has been funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, NASA, state agencies, and private industry. He has been a member of several professional organizations, including the Institute of Food Technologists, the leading professional organization in the food science discipline, the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, and the American Society for Quality Control. He is a Fellow and served as president of the Institute of Food Technologists, and a Fellow of the Food Systems Leadership Institute.
Recently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recognized him for his “distinguished service to the people of U.S.A.” as a member of the Science Board to the FDA. In 2017, he testified in front of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry on “Agricultural Research: Perspectives on Past and Future Successes for the 2018 Farm Bill,” and he is now co-chair of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, Executive Committee on Science Breakthroughs 2030: A Strategy for Food and Agricultural Research.
Before coming to K-State, Floros served as professor and head of the department of food science at Pennsylvania State University (2000-12). He also served as a professor at Purdue University (1988-2000) and worked as an international industry consultant for more than 30 years. He earned his PhD in food science and technology from the University of Georgia.