Department News | Entomology@Purdue | Spring 2011

Staff Promotions

Official announcements of the 2011-2012 Administrative/Professional Staff promotions were presented in April to four members of the Entomology A/P Staff. Lori Edwards, Business Office Assistant Manager, Patrick Jones, Forensic Lab Director, David McClure, Programmer/Analyst (CERIS), and Conni Vianco, Information Analyst (CERIS), were all advanced to the next designated level of ranking for A/P staff in the College of Agriculture.


Awards & Recognition

Distinguished Ag Alumni Award

John MumfordJohn Mumford

John Mumford (BS '74) was one of ten alumni honored with a Distinguished Ag Alumni Award at a special convocation on April 1, 2011. During his visit to Purdue, Dr. Mumford gave a seminar presentation titled "The Reform of the European Plant Health Regime."

2011 College of Agriculture TEAM Award

Rick Foster is a member of the Purdue Afghanistan Team that won the 2011 Dean's Agriculture TEAM Award in April. The team is helping to rebuild the agricultural universities in Afghanistan by giving master level instruction to junior faculty to help them develop their teaching and research skills. The team also educates the Indiana National Guard Agribusiness Development Team members deploying to Afghanistan.

2011 College of Agriculture Spring Awards

The College of Agriculture honored its top faculty and staff at the 2011 COA Spring Awards Program in April. Receiving recognition from the department were Doug Richmond, Entomology Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award, Jeff Holland, Entomology Early Career Award, Jon Neal, Entomology Outstanding Undergraduate Counselor Award, and Amanda Pendleton, Entomology Outstanding Service to Students Award.


New Staff

Mike ScharfMike Scharf

Michael Scharf (BS '91, MS '93, PhD '97) was appointed as the first O. Wayne Rollins/Orkin Endowed Chair in Urban Entomology. Mike has developed a nationally recognized program in molecular insect physiology that features toxicology, gene identification and cloning, development and metamorphosis, and cellulosics. His research in pest management has involved a wide range of insect species, including termites, cockroaches, corn rootworms, borers, houseflies, mosquitoes, mole crickets, chinch bugs, midges and honeybees. Mike is married to Dancia Wu (MS '97).

New Post Doctoral Research Associates are Insu Koh, Rhitoban Ray Choudhury, Ruchira Sen, Amit Sethi, and Marissa McDonough (MS '07, PhD '10). Insu is from Korea and working on spatial modeling with Jeff Holland. Rhitoban and Ruchira, who are married, are from India and working on microarray experiments on the termite gut in Mike Scharf's lab. Amit, also from India and working in Scharf's lab, is focusing on identifying and mapping genes in the termite gut. Marissa will be working with Larry Murdock on the PICS2 (Purdue Improved Cowpea Storage) project assessing the effectiveness of triple bag storage on infested commodities other than cowpea (corn, wheat, sorghum, common bean).


Jesse Hoteling (BS '03, MS '06) returned to the department to work as a lab technician in Mike Scharf's lab. Jesse and his wife, Gladys Andino (Entomology PhD candidate) reside in Lafayette.

Departing Staff

Thiago Benatti (PhD '10) began a new post doctoral position in March at Texas A&M University in Weslaco, Texas, where he will be working on a sugarcane molecular breeding project for the purpose of bioenergy production. Thiago worked as a post doc with Jeff Stuart for the past year.​

Department of Entomology, 901 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907 USA, (765) 494-4554

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