Facebook tracking Pixel

facebooktwitter iconlinkedin iconmap icon

Alumni Achievement Award:
This award celebrates an individual who has achieved distinction in their professional field.

“Barry is among the 21st Century pioneers in the Upper Midwest who have established a burgeoning high tech sector which broadens our economic base and colors so favorably, the landscape for future generations. Barry has changed the landscape of North Dakota to benefit us all…A model of personal and professional integrity, industry, and high ideals; he is most worthy of this prestigious honor.”

– Philip Boudjouk, NDSU Vice President for Research, Creative Activities and Technology Transfer

Click to watch biography video

Barry D. Batcheller
B.S. 1977, electrical and electronic engineering
Honorary Doctorate 2010

When Barry graduated from high school in Freeport, New York in 1969, the Apollo space program was at its peak and men had just walked on the moon. His father was a WWII veteran and he had taken a keen interest in aerospace, but also in electronics engineering. He wanted to attend a university where he could take a double major in aerospace engineering and electronics engineering. NDSU would allow him to do this, and was at that time working on a research project relating to Skylab, so he was attracted to NDSU. While at NDSU, Barry was involved with the Lutheran Center, Debate Team, United Campus Ministry and Sigma Phi Delta Fraternity. Barry earned his degree in electrical and electronics engineering in 1978. In 2010, Barry was also awarded with an Honorary Doctorate degree from NDSU.

Barry is a brilliant entrepreneur and is the holder of 20+ United States Patents on controls, instrumentation and embedded mobile electronic devices and has authored numerous technical papers on the use of electronics in agriculture. Since graduating from NDSU, Barry has been involved in the founding of four startup companies.

His first venture, Phoenix International, was born in 1987. This upstart company pioneered the use of microcomputer controls, adaptive software algorithms and “fuzzy logic” for agricultural and off-highway control systems. Phoenix International was the first cornerstone tenant in the NDSU Research and Technology Park and quickly expanded operations in the United States and Europe. In 1999, with more than 1400 employees, Phoenix was acquired by Deere and Company. Phoenix International is now one of the largest employers in Fargo-Moorhead. In 2005, Barry was not ready to retire - instead he launched a new company, Appareo Systems, LLC. Appareo is an advanced technology business that designs and manufactures electronic, mechanical and software products for aerospace, defense and transportation applications worldwide. One area of Appareo’s expertise is in augmented reality. This technology combines real-world and computer-generated data in testing hypotheses, processes and equipment. Appareo was the NDSU Incubator program’s first graduate and currently employs 55 people. In 2011, Appareo was listed in the INC 500 as the fastest growing engineering company in the United States.

Barry also serves as president and CEO of two additional companies-- Intelligent Agriculture Solutions and AFS.

Barry has been named the North Dakota Business Innovator of the Year (1994), the Fargo Chamber of Commerce Small Business Person of the Year (1995) and the North Dakota Entrepreneur of the Year (2006).

Barry has served on the boards of Xata Corporation, MeritCare (now Sanford Health), Fargo-Cass County Economic Development Corporation and is a past president of the NDSU Alumni Association Board of Directors.

He is currently serving on the boards of NDSU Research and Technology Park, Amity Technology and Hemisphere GPS.

Barry and his wife Julien have been married for 38 years and reside in Fargo. They have two children, April and David; a grandchild, Felicity, and one more grandchild on the way.

“Barry is tireless in his efforts to promote NDSU and to “connect” with NDSU students through individual mentorship and sponsorship of student organizations. His service to NDSU has continued unabated since his term on the Alumni Association Board expired.”

– Mike Krueger, Fellow Board Member, NDSU Alumni Association


“I cannot think of an individual more worthy of receiving the NDSU Alumni Achievement Award than Barry Batcheller. His commitment and dedication to North Dakota State University and its future is exemplified in all that he does with his own business and involvement with the university.”

– Tony S. Grindberg, Executive Director, NDSU Research and Technology Park


NDSU Foundation - Facebook NDSU Foundation - Twitter NDSU Foundation - Instagram NDSU Foundation - Instagram

NDSU Foundation | 1241 North University Drive | PO Box 5144 | Fargo, ND 58102 | 800-279-8971 or 701-231-6800 | Fax: 701-231-6801 | office@ndsufoundation.com

The NDSU Foundation is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.
Federal Tax ID: 23-7120898