Prepared. Passionate. Proud. Any of these words could be used to describe Dick Barnes, associate professor of management and economics.
Flipping through a stack of papers and news clippings he has collected over the course of 40-plus years, Barnes said, “My career has been really interesting because I’ve been able to work in sales and marketing all over the world.”
Barnes first came to Southwestern in 1969. He left the college in 1977 and returned to teach again in 1986.
“I’ve been here and been away. I missed being around college students. They’re so creative and innovative. They have such great curiosity,” he said.
Arden Moon, business junior, said, “He has had professional experiences outside of the classroom. He knows what he is talking about and is not afraid to tell his students about the real world and the challenges we might have.”
Challenges are something that Barnes understands. During the course of his career, Barnes has worked for several top Fortune 500 companies including, Xerox Corporation, Dresser Industries, and GTE Corporation training sales representatives and managers in the United States, South Africa, Brazil, Canada and numerous other places.
Barnes said, “I am able to use a lot of experience that I’ve had working for Fortune 500 companies explaining the importance of international marketing and sales. I’ve worked all over the world and in 40 cities in the U.S. It made me aware how important it is for students to understand domestic and international business.”
Barnes has helped students start their careers by organizing internships for his students with a long list of businesses and companies in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.
“The first job you have is critically important to your career,” said Barnes. “I was a sales rep for IBM when I was 22 years old. That built a foundation for me. I always had that to look back to. If you can do that, you’re going to be successful.”
Moon knows that Barnes really cares about his students. “He always supported and encouraged me inside and outside of the class room,” she said. “He comes to most of the theatre performances and I like that he supports his students outside of the business world.”
Students know Barnes for his extensive experience in the marketing world but also for something else. Amy Buxman, business junior, said, “I’ll always remember sitting in the classroom before he got there and waiting to see what tie-and suit-jacket combination he would walk in wearing that day. It was always an interesting sight to see.”
Outside of his career, Barnes is also proud of his family. He said, “I have two absolutely beautiful grandchildren and a son and a daughter in Winfield. I’ve been married for decades and decades to the same beautiful woman.”
Barnes’ family also includes a red, thoroughbred Siberian Tabby, Putnick.
He said, “My family provides me with a lot of personal satisfaction.”
Lea Shores is a senior majoring in English. You may e-mail her at email@example.com.
Edited by Paige Carswell.