Chris Stelzig Named Next Executive Director of Entomological Society of America

With ESA since 2000, Stelzig to begin new role December 1

Christopher J. Stelzig, CAEAnnapolis, MD; September 24, 2019—Christopher J. Stelzig, CAE, has been selected to be the next executive director of the Entomological Society of America. Stelzig, currently ESA director of strategic initiatives, will begin the new role December 1.

The ESA Governing Board last week elected to promote Stelzig, adding to his accomplished tenure with ESA that began in 2000. He will replace outgoing executive director C. David Gammel, FASAE, CAE, who announced this month that he will resign from his position November 30.

"Chris Stelzig has been an all-star on the ESA staff for many years now, and the Society owes a great deal of its growth and success over the past decade to his leadership and work ethic," says Robert K. D. Peterson, Ph.D., ESA president and professor of entomology at Montana State University. "ESA and the entomological community are fortunate to have someone as experienced as Chris ready to step into this role, and my colleagues and I on the ESA Governing Board are excited to continue working with him as we take the Society to new heights."

Stelzig has played a leading role in the development and growth of several key initiatives at ESA in recent years. Under his direction, the Society has launched a burgeoning government relations program that has increased the influence of ESA and entomologists on Capitol Hill and within the scientific community, including the formation this year of the Vector-Borne Disease Network, a coalition of more than 20 like-minded organizations working to reduce the impact of vector-borne diseases.

Stelzig has also guided the efforts of ESA's Grand Challenges Agenda for Entomology, including a summit on Zika virus and mosquitoes in Brazil in 2016, a global leadership summit later that year in Orlando, and a third on invasive arthropod species in Vancouver in 2018. In 2004, Stelzig oversaw the launch of ESA's Associate Certified Entomologist program, which has steadily grown under his watch to now more than 1,200 certified pest management professionals.

"I am very honored to be selected to continue to serve ESA in this expanded role," Stelzig says.  "Under the Governing Board and David Gammel's leadership, the Society has done great things, and I'm committed to helping our leadership to ensure that these successes continue. Our strategic principles of social responsibility, global impact, and increasing influence are critical to our long-term success."

Stelzig was first hired at ESA as a marketing and public affairs manager in 2000, and he became director of membership and marketing in 2002. Between 2008 and 2012 he managed ESA's member services and data operations in an independent contractor role before returning to a staff position as director of strategic initiatives in April 2012. Prior to ESA, Stelzig served as an advertising manager for Maryland Media in College Park, Maryland, and a business development specialist for the North Hills News Record in Cranberry, Pennsylvania. He earned his bachelor's degree in business administration from West Virginia University in 1992, and he received the Certified Association Executive designation from the American Society of Association Executives in January 2019.

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ABOUT: ESA 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 more than 7,000 members affiliated with educational institutions, health agencies, private industry, and government. Headquartered in Annapolis, Maryland, the Society stands ready as a non-partisan scientific and educational resource for all insect-related topics. For more information, visit