American Humanic History


historic humanics group

One Man’s Vision…

Who would have thought that one man’s vision for a small private college in Missouri would one day become a nation wide philanthropic organization.  H. Roe Bartle was a very large man who led a very active lifestyle which brought him to Missouri Valley College.  Among Bartle’s many accomplishments at Missouri Valley College his most lasting legacy is the American Humanics Program.  Today the American Humanics program has grown to 75 colleges and universities across the nation.

Prior to H. Roe Bartle’s time at Missouri Valley College he led the Kansas City Area Boy Scouts Council for nearly thirty years.  Bartle’s time as Council Executive left him responsible for hiring qualified staff members.  His problem wasn’t finding good people but rather those who were qualified to run an organization.  Bartle’s work with the Boy Scouts led him all over America and influenced him to become involved in many other nonprofit organizations.  Bartle later became recognized as one of the best authorities in the field of youth services.

H. Roe Bartle with the help of longtime civic leader Jerry Cohen and other prominent business leaders across the nation founded the American Humanics Program in 1948.  Bartle’s vision was to teach college undergraduates how to run the business side of a nonprofit organization.  Courses were designed to be conducted on campus with experienced agency executives to present classroom lectures and workshops.  Along with class work students would be responsible for volunteering in the community and learn valuable on the job experience.  Upon graduation the students would have acquired the management skills necessary to run a nonprofit organization.