- About ESA
- Join / Renew
- Pay Invoices
- Member Log-In
Annapolis, MD; September 10, 2014 -- The Entomological Society of America (ESA) is pleased to announce the winners of its 2014 awards. The awards will be presented at Entomology 2014, ESA's 62nd Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon from November 16-19, 2014.
The following individuals are recipients of the 2014 ESA professional and student awards.
DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD IN EXTENSION—This annual award recognizes outstanding contributions to extension entomology. Dr. John C. Palumbo is a professor and extension specialist in the Department of Entomology at the University of Arizona. John is an Arizona native and received his BS in agricultural science (1982), and MS in entomology (1985) from the University of Arizona, and a PhD degree in entomology from Oklahoma State University (1989). He joined the department in 1990 as a faculty member at the Yuma Agricultural Center, where he has developed an internationally recognized extension and research program in IPM for desert vegetable crops. He has previously served as the state IPM coordinator, and is presently the Arizona state liaison to the USDA IR-4 Program.
Dr. Palumbo's translational research and outreach program provides the Arizona vegetable and melon industries with innovative insect management solutions designed to reduce their reliance on broadly-toxic insecticides without sacrificing yield and quality. Over the past 24 years, he and his colleagues have collaboratively developed pest management alternatives and educational programs for several invasive species in the western U.S., including Bemisia tabaci, Nasonovia ribisnigri, and most recently Bagrada hilaris. These efforts have resulted in numerous refereed publications, book chapters, and extension publications, including nearly 200 papers in the ESA's Arthropod Management Tests. He has delivered more than 500 presentations to growers and agricultural consultants on a wide range of topics on vegetable IPM and reduced-risk pesticides.
John's accomplishments in extension have been recognized by stakeholders in Arizona and California, where he has received the Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award (Arizona Farm Bureau), the Distinguished Service Award (Yuma Fresh Vegetables Association), and the Outstanding Contribution to Agriculture Award (California Association of Pest Control Advisors, Desert Chapter). He was recently recognized as the University of Arizona, CALS Faculty Member of the Year by the Arizona Agriculture 100 Council.
AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT—This award, which is sponsored by Syngenta Crop Protection, is based on outstanding contributions which have a direct relation to integrated pest management (IPM). Dr. Peter C. Ellsworth is an IPM specialist and professor at the University of Arizona Department of Entomology, and the director of the Arizona Pest Management Center. He received degrees in entomology from the University of New Hampshire (BS), the University of Missouri (MS), and North Carolina State University (PhD). He established the Arizona Pest Management Center (APMC) in 2003 as a multidisciplinary consortium of pest management scientists focused on research, outreach, and implementation of IPM in Arizona, which in 2012 was awarded the US-EPA's PESP Gold Tier Shining Star Award. He serves as director of the APMC, state IPM coordinator, state pesticide coordinator, and co-director of the Western IPM Center.
Dr. Ellsworth develops science-based solutions for IPM through applied ecological investigations and organized outreach programs of cooperative extension, with principal focus on the cotton agroecosystem. He has special interests in the integration of chemical and biological controls, and landscape processes that govern pest and beneficial insect distributions. He is located at the University of Arizona's largest experiment station, the Maricopa Agricultural Center in Maricopa, a 2,100-acre laboratory, research, and demonstration farm complex.
Dr. Ellsworth has studied cotton IPM for over 23 years and has authored the successful US-EPA Section 18 Emergency Exemption that made two strategic insect growth regulators, pyriproxyfen and buprofezin, available to Arizona cotton growers for the control of whiteflies in 1996. Together with many other cotton pest management advances, it is estimated that the Arizona cotton industry saved over $388,000,000 (1996-2011) by pracicing the IPM programs that Dr. Ellsworth helped to develop. In collaboration with many others, he has helped implement innovative, cross-commodity whitefly management programs that have helped producers of cotton, melons, and vegetables to stabilize their IPM systems in Arizona.
DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD IN HORTICULTURAL ENTOMOLOGY—This award honors any ESA member who has contributed to the American horticulture industry. Dr. Daniel A. Herms is professor, state extension specialist, and chair in the Department of Entomology at The Ohio State University (OSU), where he has been a member of the faculty since 1997. He received his BS in landscape horticulture from OSU in 1982, his MS in both horticulture and entomology from OSU in 1984, and a PhD from Michigan State University in entomology with a specialization in ecology and evolutionary biology in 1991. From 1984-1996, he was also employed by the Dow Gardens, a public horticultural display garden in Midland, Michigan, where he directed the pest management program.
His research and extension programs address the ecology and management of insect pests in forests, urban forests, ornamental landscapes, nurseries, and Christmas tree plantations, with foci on chemical ecology of plant-insect interactions, phenological modeling, ecological impacts of invasive insects, and biologically-based pest management. He has published more than 200 research and extension papers, including more than 70 peer-reviewed journal articles, and has been invited to present more than 450 research and extension presentations.
He teaches or co-teaches Forest and Shade Tree Entomology and Pathology, Insect Ecology and Evolutionary Processes, and the Nature and Practice of Science. He has served on the USDA Emerald Ash Borer Science Advisory Panel and the Asian Longhorned Beetle Technical Working Group, he chairs the International Union of Forest Research Organizations Working Group on Tree Resistance to Insects, and he is a subject editor for Environmental Entomology.
DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD IN TEACHING—This award is presented annually to the member of the Society deemed to be the most outstanding teacher of the year. Dr. Diane E. Ullman received a BS in horticulture from the University of Arizona (1976) and a PhD in entomology from the University of California (1985). She began her career at the University of Hawaii-Manoa (1987), relocating in 1995 to the University of California, Davis, where she is a faculty member in the Department of Entomology and Nematology, and the Department of Plant Pathology.
Dr. Ullman chaired the Department of Entomology at UC Davis (2004-2005), after which she was named associate dean for undergraduate academic programs in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (2005-2014). There she led curriculum and program development, student recruitment and outreach, and she administrated all undergraduate academic activities.
Dr. Ullman is known for innovative, multidisciplinary teaching strategies that connect science and art programs that mentor the next generation of scientists and help undergraduates succeed. Key examples are the Art/Science Fusion Program (using experiential learning to enhance scientific literacy), the Career Discovery Group Program (training mentors to help students explore careers and select majors), and the national Thrips-Tospovirus Educational Network (training graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to mentor new scientists).
Ullman's research revolves around insects that transmit plant pathogens, in particular plant viruses. She is best known for advancing international knowledge of interactions between thrips and tospoviruses and aphids and citrus tristeza virus. Her contributions have played a fundamental role in developing novel strategies for management of insects and plant viruses. She leads a $3.75 million Coordinated Agricultural Project, and has authored more than 100 refereed publications (cited 3,660 times, h-index of 32). Ullman is an ESA Fellow (2011) and the recipient of numerous awards, including the USDA Higher Education Western Regional Award for Excellence in College and University Teaching (1993), the UC Davis Chancellor's Achievement Award for Diversity and Community (2008), and the 2014 Distinguished Award in Teaching from ESA's Pacific Branch.
EARLY CAREER INNOVATION AWARD—This award, which is sponsored by BASF, honors young professionals working within the field of entomology who have demonstrated innovation through contributions within any area of specialization (research, teaching, extension, product development, public service, etc.). Dr. Mary Gardiner is an associate professor in the Department of Entomology at The Ohio State University. She received her MS from the University of Idaho in 2004 and her in PhD from Michigan State University in 2008.
She currently advises eight graduate students and two research scientists who work in a diversity of agricultural and urban ecosystems. Much of this research takes place within an urban ecosystem that encompasses 20,000 vacant lots in Cleveland, Ohio that were formerly residential and commercial space. Here, her laboratory is focused on how redesigning vacant land to restore native plant communities, improving storm-water infiltration, and providing access to locally-produced food can influence arthropod communities and their contributions to ecosystem functions and services.
To fund her research, Dr. Gardiner has generated over $4 million in grant dollars as a lead or co-principal investigator, including a prestigious NSF Faculty Early Career Award. She has published 22 peer-reviewed publications, two book chapters, and eight extension publications in her career. She also has a book due out in February, 2015 titled Good Garden Bugs: Everything You Need to Know About Beneficial Predatory Insects, published by Quarry Books. Mary is actively engaged in extension activities related to enhancing home landscapes, urban green spaces, and small-scale farms as habitats for beneficial arthropods. She co-teaches two graduate courses: Insect Ecology and Evolutionary Processes, and Presentation Skills for Scientists.
HENRY & SYLVIA RICHARDSON RESEARCH GRANT—This grant provides research funds to postdoctoral ESA members who have at least one year of promising work experience, are undertaking research in selected areas, and have demonstrated a high level of scholarship. Sarah Jandricic grew up thinking she was going to be a zoologist, a marine biologist, and an environmental lawyer. At age 22, she decided she should settle on just one profession. After falling in love with insects at the University of Guelph, she began studying entomology and toxicology. Under the guidance of Drs. Cynthia Scott-Dupree and Bruce Broadbent, she earned a joint MS in both fields in 2005.
After graduating, Sarah worked for two years as the director for research for Eco Habitat Agri-Services, a company offering pest management consulting for the greenhouse industry. Realizing she had so much more to learn about insects and their control, she returned to academia in 2007, receiving her PhD from Cornell University in 2013 with Dr. John Sanderson. Her project investigated oviposition decisions of an aphidophagous predator (Aphidoletes aphidimyza) in multi-prey environments, as well as the biology of a serious and emerging greenhouse pest, the foxglove aphid.
Sarah is now actively avoiding interacting with snow and cold by working as a postdoctoral researcher in the lab of Dr. Steven Frank at North Carolina State University, where she is investigating non-consumptive predator effects on the behavior and fitness of western flower thrips, as well as other avenues for improving integrated pest management of these pests. Over her career, Sarah has received several prestigious awards, including funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, a North East SARE grant, and the John Henry Comstock Award from ESA's Eastern Branch. She hopes to continue in a career studying predator-prey interactions and the optimization of IPM programs in agriculture.
NAN-YAO SU AWARD FOR INNOVATION AND CREATIVITY IN ENTOMOLOGY—Each year this award is given to an ESA member who is able to demonstrate through his/her projects or accomplishments an ability to identify problems and develop creative, alternative solutions that significantly impact entomology. Dr. Luke Alphey is a leader in the emerging field of genetic pest management, focusing particularly on mosquitoes. He is a non-executive director of Oxitec Ltd, a spin-out company from Oxford University that he co-founded in 2002 (he was the research director from 2002-2014).
Oxitec is developing innovative technology known as RIDL (Release of Insects carrying a Dominant Lethal) to control insect pests, based on the use of engineered sterile males of the pest insect species. These insects carry a simple genetic system imparting conditional (repressible) lethality. In the lab or factory, provision of tetracycline allows the insects to thrive. On release into the wild, the males mate with wild female insects, which lay eggs that are unable to develop into adults, due to inheritance of the control circuit and the absence of the repressor "antidote."
In 2006, Oxitec and the USDA led the first open field releases of a genetically-modified insect. In 2009 and 2010, in collaboration with government of the Cayman Islands, the first outdoor GM mosquito experiments were conducted, showing that RIDL male mosquitoes could indeed find, mate with, and suppress a wild mosquito population. Further open trials in Malaysia and Brazil have subsequently been successfully completed, indicating that the engineered mosquitoes can perform well across a broad range of ecological and social settings.
Prof Alphey's earlier career focused on basic science, using Drosophila as a model system. After 11 years at Oxitec, he moved to the Pirbright Institute in Feb, 2014. Dr. Alphey has published extensively on insect genetic engineering and contributed to regulatory frameworks. He and Oxitec have won several awards for this pioneering green technology.
RECOGNITION AWARD IN ENTOMOLOGY—This award, which is sponsored by Syngenta Crop Protection, recognizes entomologists who are making significant contributions to agriculture. Dr. James F. Campbell is a research entomologist with the USDA-ARS Center for Grain and Animal Health Research in Manhattan, Kansas. Dr. Campbell received a BS and an MS in entomology from Rutgers University, and a PhD in entomology from the University of California, Davis. He joined USDA-ARS in 1999 and has since then conducted research focused on the spatial distribution and movement patterns of stored-product insects in food facility landscapes, improving the implementation and interpretation of insect monitoring programs, and determining the impact of different management tactics on pest populations within commercial food facilities.
Dr. Campbell is an adjunct professor in the Department of Entomology at Kansas State University, where he has co-supervised eight graduate students and served on many other graduate student committees. He has written more than 110 peer-reviewed journal articles and more than 35 book chapters, proceedings papers, and technical articles. He has also given more than 150 invited presentations, and has been a part of collaborative research teams that have obtained more than $9 million in extramural funding.
Dr. Campbell serves as the secretary/treasurer for the Permanent Committee of the International Working Conference on Stored Product Protection and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Stored Products Research. He has served ESA as Secretary, Vice-Chair and Chair of the former Section Cd. Dr. Campbell has received the USDA-ARS-NPA Early Career Research Scientist of the Year Award and the ESA NCB Award for Excellence in Integrated Pest Management and the Recognition Award in Entomology.
RECOGNITION AWARD IN INSECT PHYSIOLOGY, BIOCHEMISTRY, & TOXICOLOGY—This award, which is sponsored by Apex Bait Technologies, Inc., recognizes and encourages outstanding extension, research, and teaching contributions in urban entomology. Dr. Sarjeet Gill is a professor of cell biology and neuroscience and an entomologist in the Agricultural Experiment Station at the University of California, Riverside. He received his doctorate in insecticide toxicology from UC Berkeley and joined the Department of Entomology at UC Riverside in 1983. He helped established the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience and the Graduate Program of Environmental Toxicology, and served as chair of the department and director of the program. Professor Gill is currently the editor of Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, a premier journal in entomology, and he co-edited the series Comprehensive Molecular Insect Science.
Professor Gill's laboratory has two principal research foci. The first area is to elucidate the mode of action of insecticidal toxins derived from the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis. These toxins are active against agricultural pests and vectors of human diseases. More recently, his work involves another Gram positive bacteria, Clostridium bifermantans, which is mosquitocidal. The aim of the research in Professor Gill's lab is to gain a molecular understanding of the toxins involved, and how these toxins interact with cellular targets, thereby causing a disruption of ion regulation and lethality. A second area of research focuses on understanding mosquito midgut and Malpighian tubules function, in particular ion and nutrient transport, and changes that occur following a blood meal and how toxins affect these functions. Prof. Gill is a fellow of the AAAS, and has served on numerous grant review panels at the NIH and USDA.
RECOGNITION AWARD IN URBAN ENTOMOLOGY—This award recognizes and encourages outstanding extension, research, and teaching contributions in urban entomology. Dr. Nancy Hinkle moves easily between agricultural and urban entomology, dealing with significant pests in both areas. Most of her research has involved flies—not just flies around the home, but their origins and their impact on animal agriculture, as well. Discoveries from field studies on avian mites inform her work with delusory parasitosis (and debunk many of the claims made on http://www.birdmites.org). Because fleas are both significant ectoparasites and household pests, she investigates on-host control as well as environmental suppression. She has studied the distribution of brown recluse spiders in Georgia, seasonality of tick activity in north Georgia, and the role darkling beetles play in Salmonella transmission in poultry.
After completing her bachelor's and master's degrees at Auburn University, Nancy worked in veterinary entomology at UGA's Coastal Plain Experiment Station in Tifton. She then went back to school and received a PhD in urban entomology (working on fleas) from the University of Florida. For nine years she taught at the University of California, Riverside before returning to the University of Georgia (Athens) in 2001. Nancy served ESA on the Governing Board (2010-13), as chair of the Medical, Urban, and Veterinary Entomology Section (2005), and she is currently President-Elect of ESA's Southeastern Branch. In 2009 she served as president of the Society for Vector Ecology. She coached the UCR Linnaean Games team to the 1998 national championship, and the UGA Linnaean Games team to the national championship in 2012. In 2012 she received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Veterinary Entomology, and she was awarded ESA's Distinguished Achievement Award in Extension in 2001.
THOMAS SAY AWARD—This ESA award acknowledges significant and outstanding work in the fields of insect systematics, morphology, or evolution. Dr. Bryan N. Danforth, a professor in the Department of Entomology at Cornell University, is internationally recognized for his research on the biodiversity, natural history, and evolution of bees and their closely-related wasp relatives.
Danforth, a native of Oyster Bay, NY, received his BS in zoology from Duke University, and his MS and PhD degrees in entomology from the University of Kansas. He was a postdoctoral associate with George Eickwort at Cornell before he joined the faculty in the Department of Entomology in 1996.
Danforth's work spans a range of topics, including the origins of bees, the higher-level phylogeny of bees, the evolutionary history of bee social behavior, the antiquity of bees based both on hard fossil evidence as well as fossil-calibrated molecular phylogenies, the historical biogeography of bees, the evolution of cleptoparasitism, and, most recently, the role of native bees in agricultural pollination. Danforth has conducted field work on bees in Australia, Africa, Madagascar, Europe, and North America. He has published nearly 80 peer-reviewed papers and has played a significant role in the careers of graduate students, postdocs, and visiting scholars.
Danforth teaches a number of courses at Cornell, including Alien Empire: Bizarre Biology of Bugs; Insect Diversity and Evolution; and Tropical Field Entomology. He is also a regular contributor to the Bee Course, an annual workshop on all aspects of bee biology and systematics that takes place at the Southwestern Research Station in Portal, AZ.
Danforth holds additional appointments at the American Museum of Natural History, the Cornell University Insect Collection, the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future, and the Cornell Center for Comparative and Population Genomics.
ESA STUDENT AWARDS
LARRY LARSON GRADUATE STUDENT AWARD FOR LEADERSHIP IN APPLIED ENTOMOLOGY—This award, which is sponsored by Dow AgroSciences, recognizes Dr. Larry Larson's role as a leader and pioneer in insect management and carries that legacy to the next generation of leaders in applied entomology. Zachary DeVries was born in Columbus, Ohio, but raised in Auburn, Alabama. As an undergraduate at Auburn University, Zach jumped right in to field work, exploring his interests in biology by working in both a fish ecology lab and a herpetology lab. Zach later began conducting research with Dr. Ray Henry (Dept. of Biological Sciences, Auburn University), studying the physiology and behavior of giant aquatic salamanders. Zach completed his BS degree in zoology with a minor in statistics in 2011. Upon completion of his BS, Zach began pursuing his master's degree in entomology at Auburn University, working with Dr. Art Appel. His research focused on the physiology of urban pests, such as silverfish, firebrats, and bed bugs. His work has led to some interesting discoveries about the metabolism of these species as well as numerous collaborations with other departments and universities. Zach completed his master's degree in 2013.
Zach is currently a PhD student at North Carolina State University, where he is studying the physiology, behavior, and management of urban pests under the direction of Dr. Coby Schal. Zach's dissertation research integrates two important areas of urban entomology: German cockroach allergen mitigation, and bed bug chemical ecology and behavior. Through his work, Zach hopes to improve the management of both of these pests by acquiring both basic and applied knowledge. Zach would like to thank both the Entomological Society of America and Dow AgroSciences. This opportunity will be invaluable to his career development.
LILLIAN & ALEX FEIR GRADUATE STUDENT TRAVEL AWARD IN INSECT PHYSIOLOGY, BIOCHEMISTRY, OR MOLECULAR BIOLOGY—This award aims to encourage graduate students working with insects or other arthropods in the broad areas of physiology, biochemistry, and molecular biology to affiliate with ESA's Physiology, Biochemistry, and Toxicology Section and to attend the ESA Annual Meeting or an International Congress of Entomology. Holly Holt is a graduate student in Dr. Christina Grozinger's laboratory at Penn State University. Her PhD research focuses on two fungal pathogens of honey bees, Nosema apis and Nosema ceranae. Infection with either pathogen species is energetically costly for honey bee workers and can lead to numerous aberrations in worker physiology and behavior, culminating in premature death. Using a whole-genome approach, Holly and collaborators (Drs. Kate Aronstein and Christina Grozinger) identified molecular factors with intersecting nutritional, hormonal, and metabolic roles that likely drive the physiological and behavioral symptoms of infection in worker honey bees. Holly is currently characterizing molecular, physiological, and behavioral symptoms of infection in male honey bees and directly comparing drone disease management strategies to worker responses. She hopes that by contributing to our basic understanding of Nosema pathology in honey bees, we can find effective, long-term treatments for these damaging pathogens. Holly also enjoys outreach, mentoring, and policy activities, and she appreciates opportunities to engage with the general public, beekeepers, and scientists.
STUDENT ACTIVITY AWARD—Sponsored by Monsanto Company, this award is presented annually to recognize a student for outstanding contributions to the Society, his/her academic department, and the community, while still achieving academic excellence. Rebecca Schmidt-Jeffris received her BS in biology from Washburn University in Topeka, KS. With her research advisor, Dr. Lee Boyd, she completed an independent research project investigating prey preferences and kin selection in praying mantids. She is currently in the final year of her doctoral studies in the Department of Entomology at Washington State University. Her dissertation research, under her major advisor Dr. Elizabeth H. Beers, focuses on the biological control of mite pests by phytoseiid mites in apple orchards. Aspects of this work include phytoseiid releases, diversity surveys, and behavioral and pesticide bioassays.
Rebecca enjoys actively participating in both ESA and her department. She has served in several offices for the WSU Entomology Graduate Student Association, including representative to the graduate senate, secretary, and two terms as president. In this capacity, she coordinated several department events, including visits by guest speakers and the annual Insect Expo. She also volunteers as a teaching assistant and guest lecturer for the department. At the Branch level, Rebecca has enjoyed chairing the Student Symposium and Text-Messaging Competition. She is currently the Vice Chair and Pacific Branch Representative of the ESA Student Affairs Committee and will begin her term as the Chair at the end of this year. One of her favorite activities to organize is the annual Student Debates. She was excited to be appointed as a Co-Chair of the Student Affairs Committee for the 2016 International Congress of Entomology and is currently working to plan student activities for this meeting. After completing her degree, Rebecca hopes to find a postdoctoral or professorship position working in integrated pest management, and would love to continue studying predatory mites.
JOHN HENRY COMSTOCK GRADUATE STUDENT AWARDS—These six awards are given to one graduate student from each ESA Branch to promote interest in entomology and to stimulate interest in attending the ESA Annual Meeting.
Eric Bohnenblust (Eastern Branch) graduated with a BS in biology from Gettysburg College. After graduation, Eric worked as a research technician at the Penn State Fruit Research and Extension Center for a year under the guidance of Drs. Larry Hull and Greg Krawczyk on the Area-Wide Sex Pheromone Mating Disruption Program for codling moth and oriental fruit moth in tree fruits. Eric then pursued a master’s degree in entomology at Penn State, continuing to work under Drs. Hull and Krawczyk. During his master’s, Eric’s work focused on mating disruption of codling moth and oriental fruit moth, including mating disruption efficacy trials, and effective monitoring of codling moth and oriental fruit moth. For his PhD, Eric worked with Dr. John Tooker at Penn State University. His doctoral work assessed the efficacy and value of transgenic insect-resistant Bt field corn hybrids for controlling European corn borer and corn earworm. Eric also received a US Environmental Protection Agency Science to Achieve Results Fellowship to pursue research investigating the effects of the herbicide dicamba on several non-target plant and insect species as part of his doctoral research.
Rebecca Dew (International Branch) is currently in her second year of her PhD at the Flinders University of South Australia. Rebecca's research is focused on the evolution of social behavior with climate in the allodapine bee tribe and, in particular, the arid adapted genus Exoneurella. Rebecca have always been interested with animal behavior, particularly social behavior, and this genus of bee is a fascinating group to study due to the presence of Exoneurella tridentata, which demonstrates eusociality, the most extreme form of social behavior. The occurrence of eusociality in this group is of particular interest as the three other members of this genus are only weakly social. Rebecca has been studying the Exoneurella since 2010 when she undertook a three-year undergraduate research project under her current supervisor, Associate Professor Michael Schwarz. After receiving her bachelor's degree, she took a year off to travel before deciding to return to Flinders to complete her Honors in 2012. This led straight into her PhD project, which expands on her previous work. She is employing behavioral studies, haplotype networks and phylogenetic reconstructions to explore changes in social behavior within and between species, and how these may have been influenced by climate. Outside of her PhD work, she is also the editor for the monthly email newsletter for the Society of Australian Systematic Biologists.
Michael McCarville (North Central Branch) will complete his PhD in entomology with a plant pathology minor this spring at Iowa State University (ISU). He completed his BS at Briar Cliff University in 2008 and his MS in 2011 at ISU. He is advised by Dr. Matthew O'Neal. Michael's research focuses on integrating soybean aphid and soybean cyst nematode management through host-plant resistance. Michael has always been intrigued by how insects, nematodes, and pathogens manipulate host-plant defenses and primary metabolism. He realizes that multiple herbivores and stressors attack plants simultaneously, and this can lead to plant-mediated interactions between herbivores and pathogens. Integrated pest management, therefore, should not be limited to using multiple tactics to manage a single pest, but should include combining tactics to efficiently manage multiple pests at once. Michael's dissertation is divided into two parts. The first evaluates the compatibility of a resistance pyramid with other tactics for managing both soybean aphid population densities and virulence allele frequencies. The second explores the ability of host-plant resistance to manipulate pest population densities and subsequently alter soybean aphid-soybean cyst nematode interactions. Michael has authored six peer-reviewed journal articles, nine extension publications, and has co-authored a grant to fund his all of his PhD research. He has given 16 scientific presentations, five extension talks, and eight posters. Michael has taught courses at ISU in insect biology and pest management, serving as a lab instructor for six semesters. He has been active in the ESA's North Central Branch, serving on the Student Affairs Committee for two years.
Dr. Kelly Hamby (Pacific Branch) received her PhD in entomology in March, 2014 under the direction of Professor Frank Zalom at the University of California, Davis with a focus on sustainable integrated pest management strategies for various insect pests. Her dissertation research, titled "Biology and pesticide resistance management of Drosophila suzukii in coastal California berries," covered monitoring, yeast associations, chronobiology, chronotoxicity of insecticides, and the implications of this work to managing a recent invader, the spotted wing drosophila. Kelly also received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship to study molecular mechanisms of target site resistance to insecticides in this system. In 2011, she was awarded the Lillian and Alex Feir Graduate Student Travel Award in Insect Physiology, Biochemistry, or Molecular Biology from the ESA Pacific Branch.
Amber Dawn Tripodi (Southeastern Branch) earned her BS in biology with a minor in entomology from the University of Arkansas, with undergraduate projects in termite phylogeography and sexual selection in cactophilic Drosophila. She obtained her MS in environmental sciences from the University of Colorado, studying the effect of nitrogen deposition on the growth of high-altitude trees, before returning to the University of Arkansas for a PhD while working on native bees. Her dissertation combined community ecology, population genetics, and phylogeography to provide insights into the distributions and conservation status of bumble bees and carpenter bees. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the USDA-Logan Bee Laboratory, where she investigates bumble bee pathogens.
Dr. Nathan Lord (Southwestern Branch) is an insect systematist specializing in the order Coleoptera. He is broadly interested in alpha- and beta- level taxonomy, reconstructing phylogenies utilizing both morphological and molecular data, and exploring interesting evolutionary scenarios within Coleoptera. Nathan received his BSES in entomology in 2006 and his MS in entomology in 2008 from the University of Georgia under the direction of Dr. Joseph McHugh. His MS thesis was a molecular phylogeny of the minute brown scavenger beetles (Coleoptera: Latridiidae), a description of a new beetle family (Akalyptoischiidae), and a taxonomic revision of the genus Deretaphrus Newman (Coleoptera: Bothrideridae). He received his PhD in biology in 2013 from the University of New Mexico under the direction of Dr. Kelly Miller, where his research focused on phylogenetic reconstruction and taxonomic revisionary work within the beetle family Zopheridae, with an emphasis on the biogeography of the southern hemisphere through the use of zopherids as a model taxon. In addition, he has conducted several descriptive and revisionary projects within Zopheridae and Bothrideridae, where numerous new taxa have been described. Nathan has also produced several interactive, digital tools (e.g. Lucid keys). He has authored a book chapter and nine peer-reviewed papers/taxonomic tools, and is the recipient of numerous academic awards. Nathan is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Brigham Young University under the advisement of Dr. Seth Bybee, where his research involves applying NGS methods to investigate the evolution of visual systems within the beetle family Buprestidae and across the order Odonata.
The Entomological Society of America is the largest organization in the world serving the professional and scientific needs of entomologists and people in related disciplines. Founded in 1889, ESA today has nearly 7,000 members affiliated with educational institutions, health agencies, private industry, and government. Members are researchers, teachers, extension service personnel, administrators, marketing representatives, research technicians, consultants, students, and hobbyists. For more information, visit http://www.entsoc.org.