- Department: Entomology/Plant Path
- University: University of Florida
- Location: Gainesville, Florida
I am from the bayou state of Louisiana. I grew up playing outdoors, going on great adventures, and yes, eating some of what was caught on some of those adventures. I was in 4-H as a child, and was introduced to the wonderful world of insects. I was amazed at learning more about God's creation and all the diverse small animals that are part of our world. In fact, it was at a summer camp when I came to the realization that I was a sinner and needed to ask Jesus to forgive me so I could have a relationship with God. I considered this for a while, thought through what I had learned in Bible study, and when I arrived home, I knelt by my bed and asked Jesus into my heart. I then went boldly to my parents and let them know I was ready to be baptized. They asked me some questions, and when I was 10, I met with the pastor, and scheduled my baptism. I was enrolled in a scuba class, and had to miss the lesson that night. They laughed at me, and said they could have baptized me in the swimming pool. Little did I know, that that was God showing me that I could use life situations like that as a tool to share my faith with others. God has been a constant guide to me as I grew in my faith and in my college life and career. God has shown his love to me in so many ways. God provided for me to move from Louisiana to Florida for graduate school, and I have been blessed to remain, and now serve as an Associate Professor and Undergraduate Coordinator. Most recently, God has seen me through a very tough time. I traveled to a conference, and evidently was exposed to a mosquito borne virus that lead to permanent brain damage that resulted in epilepsy. It took nearly three years for doctors to diagnose the illness and for me to begin treatment. Through that journey, God was by my side. I called out daily for relief and for peace. God provided hope through his promises that He would never leave me. Christian friends, my church family, my family, and my wonderful husband surrounded me in prayer, My students rallied around me and volunteered to become teaching assistants. God is our strength and our provider. I am proud to be His, and pray that I can be salt and light on campus.
My favorite quote changes from day to day depending on what is going on in my life. Today, I am working on helping people solve pest problems, so the quote is from a famous cockroach researcher, P.B. Cornwell. "The cockroach is probably the most obnoxious insect known to man." Actually, cockroaches are amazing animals and are well adapted to their environment. If you have the chance to visit Florida, you will learn that they are commonly called "palmetto bugs" to be a little more tourist friendly.
Friends describe me
talkative, friendly, interesting/strange because of my fondness for insects
Playing the flute, Insect collecting, fellowshiping with friends and family
Fantasy dinner guests
Paul, CS Lewis,
Best advice I ever received
Give truth in love and trust God and always obey Him.
My undergrad alma mater
University of Louisiana-Monroe
My worst subject in school
In college I drove
a red Ford Tarus
If I weren't a professor, I would
A Land Remembered
The Sound of Music
New Orleans -gotta love the food.
I like tea instead.
Nobody knows I
Do research with cockroaches and bed bugs.
My latest accomplishment
Working with a great team of urban entomologists at the University of Florida and being the director of the UF Entomology Education and Outreach Program. Our Entomology Club was just selected as the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences club of the year and our department is listed as #1 in the world.
Part of a team evaluating mosquito management techniques in the aquatic environment and their impact on honey bee water foragers.