A native of Oklahoma, Mannering earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy at Oklahoma State University, and both master’s and doctoral degrees in soil science at Purdue, and then joined the Department of Agronomy faculty in 1967 as an assistant professor. He retired in 1990. Mannering has been cited for his significant research contributions in soil erosion control, and the effect of conservation tillage on soil properties. He is a developer of the Universal Soil Loss Prediction Equation. He also developed and presented educational programs on soil erosion, conservation tillage, irrigation and drainage, human, animal and industrial waste management, and water quality. Mannering has authored over 70 scientific publications, more than 35 Extension bulletins, and numerous magazine articles and news stories on soil and water conservation. Prior to doctoral studies at Purdue, Mannering worked as a researcher for the University of Idaho Branch Experiment Station, and as a U.S.D.A. soil scientist based at Purdue where he was in charge of simulated rainfall research designed to refine factors used in the universal soil loss equation. More recently he has cooperated in a multi-dimensional Purdue corn-soybean tillage-planting systems research project. At Purdue, Mannering has been responsible for educational programs in soil erosion, tillage, soil compaction, irrigation, animal waste management, strip mine reclamation, and water pollution from agricultural lands. In 1967 he served as state chairman of a joint Purdue-U.S.D.A.-state government Nonpoint-Source Pollution Committee to inform Indiana people of the national water quality law, especially its impact on agriculture. For many years, Mannering taught an undergraduate course in soil conservation and water management for 30-50 students per semester. He served on the graduate committees of 32 master’s and doctoral students from agronomy, agricultural engineering and agricultural education. Mannering received the Fredrick L. Hovde Award of Excellence in Educational Service to Rural People of Indiana in 1982. He is a fellow of the American Society of Agronomy, the Soil Science Society of America, and the Soil Conservation Society of America. He is also a member of the American Society Science, Sigma Xi, Alpha Zeta, Phi Kappa Phi, Gamma Sigma Delta and Epsilon Sigma Phi professional and honorary societies.