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Class of 2015

The Pest Management Professional Hall of Fame was established in 1997 to recognize and thank those who’ve led the pest management industry to new heights. This year, four industry icons — John R. Cook Sr., Noad Corley, Dr. Laurel Hansen and Dr. Phil Koehler — join the ranks of 79 other PMP Hall of Famers. Though they need no introduction, here’s the Class of 2015.

John R. Cook Sr.

John R. Cook Sr. took the reins of the North Alabama Termite Co. after the passing of his father, and sculpted it into Cook’s Pest Control, a full-service pest management company. He grew his company from one full-time employee and a handful of accounts into the seventh largest pest management company in the nation. In addition to being Chairman emeritus of Cook’s Pest Control, Cook Sr. served as president of the Alabama Pest Control Association and the National Pest Control Association. He also received the 2001 National Pest Management Association President’s Pinnacle Award and was recognized by the Better Business Bureau with a National Torch Award for Marketplace ethics. Cook was at the helm of the company from 1950 until 1995, and still came to work up until about a month before he died in February 2009 from pancreatic cancer.

Noad Corley

Noad Corley, president and founder of Corley Pest Control in Dallas, is remembered by the industry for his advocacy for industry training and education as well as his member-recruiting expertise. He was the creator and driving force behind the National Pest Management Association’s Bird Control Manual. He also served two terms each as president of the Texas Pest Control Association and the Greater Dallas Pest Control Association and displayed a natural ability to lead as a member of both the Texas Pest Control Board and the National Pest Control Association. Corley passed away in 2000 with more than 50 years of pest management industry experience behind him and a legacy found in the countless individuals who learned from him in those years.

Dr. Laurel Hansen

Dr. Laurel Hansen holds a Ph.D. in entomology from Eastern Washington University and is currently an instructor of biology for Spokane Falls Community College, where she is an adjunct faculty member. Known as one of the nation’s top ant researchers, Hansen has shared her wealth of knowledge concerning ants, urban pest management and chemical control fundamentals, in classrooms, labs and through her numerous industry speaking engagements. A highly regarded industry speaker, Hansen is continually submerged in research and teaching, and says that ants continue to fuel her passion for entomology. Hansen has been honored with a Life Achievement Award from the Washington State Pest Management Association and 2006 Crown Leadership Award. She continues to encourage and inspire future entomologists and pest management professionals.

Dr. Phil Koehler

Dr. Phil Koehler has played a key role in developing a professional pest industry in the Sunshine State. As professor of the department of entomology and nematology at University of Florida’s (UF’s) Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Koehler has affected and informed countless individuals in pest management through his various training programs and research. Koehler earned his degree in biology from North Carolina’s Catawba College and a doctorate in entomology from Cornell University. He’s also served as a Lieutenant medical entomologist in the U.S. Navy. In 1995, he helped raise more than $600,000 to build the Urban Entomology Building on the UF campus. He’s also the author of four books on pests, and is an endowed professor both in structural pest control and in urban pest management.

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PMP Hall of Fame Spotlight: Noad Corley

Noad Corley

Noad Corley

The Pest Management Professional (PMP) Hall of Fame Class of 2015 is comprised of Dr. Laurel Hansen, Dr. Phil Koehler, John R. Cook Sr. and Noad Corley. The magazine staff will induct these deserving candidates in an invitation-only black-tie dinner and ceremony in Nashville on Oct. 19, the night before the National Pest Management Association’s PestWorld 2015 event gets underway. Our formal coverage of the inductees will be in our September issue, but between now and then, we’ll provide you with some informal factoids about them so you can get to know them better.

For example, the late Noad Corley, founder of Corley Pest Control in Dallas, was known throughout the industry as a gentleman and a prankster. Fellow Hall of Famer Norm Cooper (Class of 1999) sent us a photo of one of his favorite gag gifts made by and given to him by Corley — the “Aggie Keys.” Based on where the key ring goes through, it’s a sly dig at Texas A&M.

On a more serious note, each of these candidates was nominated by members of the industry and voted in by the Hall of Fame committee, whose membership rotates each year. If you’d like to be part of the nomination process for the Hall of Fame Class of 2016, click here.

PMP would like to acknowledge the generous support of its Hall of Fame sponsors.

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PMP Hall of Fame Spotlight: Dr. Phil Koehler

Dr. Phil Koehler

Dr. Phil Koehler

The Pest Management Professional (PMP) Hall of Fame Class of 2015 is comprised of Dr. Laurel Hansen, Dr. Phil Koehler, John R. Cook Sr. and Noad Corley. The magazine staff will induct these deserving candidates in an invitation-only black-tie dinner and ceremony in Nashville on Oct. 19, the night before the National Pest Management Association’s PestWorld 2015 event gets underway. Our formal coverage of the inductees will be in our September issue, but between now and then, we’ll provide you with some informal factoids about them so you can get to know them better.

For years, the University of Florida’s Dr. Phil Koehler would humorously weave in his infamous hatred of cats during his industry presentations. But the reality is, he used to love them — until he didn’t.

“Years ago, when we were doing flea research, we had cats we maintained the fleas on,” Koehler says. “They were the best hosts for fleas. At the peak of our production, we were producing 60,000 fleas a week. We had 12 cats, but anytime you have that many cats, you don’t exactly like them.”

Some of those cats, such as one named Fang, had terrible personalities.

“We tried to be humane with our cats, and let them out of the cages,” Koehler says. “Fang would climb up on top of the cages and jump on anyone who came into the room. Two graduate students got cat scratch fever from Fang.”

Koehler teases that he shares his dislike with many pest management professionals (PMPs), especially those who have had customers’ felines run out the door unnoticed during a call. Still others have voiced irritation at the irrational blame they receive from cat owners if a pet gets ill after a (responsible and pet-friendly) pest treatment.

“You can’t win with cats,” Koehler says.

The real topper came when People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)wrote to the university’s president complaining about Koehler’s use of cats in research. Koehler’s department chairman wrote back to the president, saying that he didn’t realize you had to like cats to be employed by the university.

That finished that cat discussion.

Each Hall of Fame candidate was nominated by members of the pest management industry, and then voted in by the Hall of Fame committee, whose membership rotates each year. If you’d like to be part of the nomination process for the Hall of Fame Class of 2016, click here.

PMP would like to acknowledge the generous support of our sponsors:

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PMP Hall of Fame Spotlight: John R. Cook Sr.

The Pest Management Professional (PMP) Hall of Fame Class of 2015 is comprised of Dr. Laurel Hansen, Dr. Phil Koehler, John R. Cook Sr. and Noad Corley. The magazine staff will induct these deserving candidates in an invitation-only black-tie dinner and ceremony in Nashville on Oct. 19, the night before the National Pest Management Association’s PestWorld 2015 event gets underway. Our formal coverage of the inductees will be in our September issue, but between now and then, we’ll provide you with some informal factoids about them so you can get to know them better.

John R. Cook Sr.

John R. Cook Sr.

For example, according to the history page on CooksPest.com, “Cook’s Natural Science Museum began as an insect display for Cook’s Pest Control’s Decatur (Ala.) Office Open House in 1968. From 1969 to 1980, it was located in the back of the Cook’s warehouse and open by appointment only.”

The late John R. Cook Sr., who was at the helm of his family’s pest management company from 1950 until 1995, oversaw the 1980 construction of the current, 5,000-sq.-ft. facility, which houses a variety of natural science artifacts. At press time, construction is set to begin at the end of the month on a $15 million, 35,000-sq.-ft. facility. It is expected to be completed by 2017 (learn more at CookMuseum.org).

Each Hall of Fame candidate was nominated by members of the pest management industry, and then voted in by the Hall of Fame committee, whose membership rotates each year. If you’d like to be part of the nomination process for the Hall of Fame Class of 2016, click here.

PMP would like to acknowledge the generous support of our sponsors:

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2015 PMP Hall of Fame Spotlight: Dr. Laurel Hansen

The Pest Management Professional (PMP) Hall of Fame Class of 2015 is comprised of Dr. Laurel Hansen, Dr. Phil Koehler, John R. Cook Sr. and Noad Corley. The magazine staff will induct these deserving candidates in an invitation-only black-tie dinner and ceremony in Nashville on Oct. 19, the night before the National Pest Management Association’s PestWorld 2015 event gets underway. Our formal coverage of the inductees will be in our September issue, but between now and then, we’ll provide you with some informal factoids about them so you can get to know them better.

Dr. Laurel Hansen

Dr. Laurel Hansen

For example, Dr. Laurel Hansen, an entomology professor at Washington State’s Spokane Falls Community College, is passionate about ants. How ant-centric is she? Enough so that on more than one occasion, ants have instigated some minor brushes with authorities.

“I was doing Ph.D. work on ant trails,” Hansen recalls. “We were doing it at night because I was trying to illustrate ants are more active along their trails at night.”

Conducting this kind of night work required Hansen and her team to poke around in the dark with red lights. White lights would confuse or scare ants, while red lights don’t register with them, she explains. The homeowners of the property on which Hansen was conducting her research knew what the team was doing. But their vacation-time house sitter, not so much.

“We heard the sirens coming,” Hansen says. “Before we knew it, the driveway was blocked and we were surrounded. State troopers and everything.”

Hansen wasn’t rattled. She’d been down this road before, though in the past most run-ins had been with security guards or other lower-level authorities — or skunks and raccoons, which we imagine could be equally disconcerting.

Before the police arrived, Hansen suggested to her colleagues that she would simply go knock on the door and explain to the occupant inside — who had since shuttered the blinds — that important ant research was being conducted, which accounted for the red lights and the appearance of sinister nighttime creeping.

But colleagues quickly intervened.

“They were afraid whoever answered the door might have a gun,” she says. “We already heard the sirens though, so we just waited it out.”

Hansen was able to show the troopers her field notebook, which she explains “looks very official.” They wanted to flip through the notebook, which, in addition to proving her innocence, also provided them with a brief crash course on nighttime ant activity.

“The story actually made the local news,” Hansen says. “The headline was ‘Ants Up, Please!’”

Perhaps “Come Out with Your Ants Up” was already taken?

PMP would like to acknowledge the generous support of its Hall of Fame sponsors.

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