Military service, an active trial practice, and political office preceded Richard Rogers' appointment to the federal bench in Kansas. He was a bombardier in Europe during World War II where he earned the Distinguished Flying Cross. Back home, he earned a juris doctor degree from the University of Kansas, joined a law firm and ran for political office. Citizens elected him Mayor of Manhattan, Kansas, and County Attorney for Riley County, and they sent him to the Kansas Legislature for four years as a Representative and eight years as a senator. He was President of the Kansas Senate when President Ford appointed him to the U.S. District Court for Kansas in 1975. Accomplishments on and off the bench secured him the Distinguished Alumnus Citation by the University Of Kansas Law Society, an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Kansas State University and Distinguished Kansan of the Year by the Native Sons and Daughters of Kansas. Judge Rogers took senior status in 1989 and has since maintained a full caseload.