Roadtrip Roundup: Purdue Pest Management Conference


February 2, 2022


Gathering for an attendee group photo is a time-honored conference tradition. To see vintage photos, visit PHOTO: PURDUE UNIVERSITY

The 86th annual Purdue Pest Management Conference took place on the university’s West Lafayette, Ind., campus Jan. 10-12. Between the unpredictable Midwestern weather and ongoing pandemic precautions, the organizers thought ahead and offered a hybrid event. They report approximately 225 attendees were on campus in-person, and another 145 attendees were virtual.

To kick off the conference, in-person attendees had the choice of participating in business roundtables, attending Rutgers University entomology professor Dr. Changlu Wang’s presentation on “What a New Tech Needs to Know about Bed Bugs” (also available to virtual attendees), and/or visiting the Insect ID Gallery, where participants could view specimens under a microscope.

After the opening ceremonies, Troy, Mich.-based Rose Pest Solutions’ Mark VanderWerp, BCE, returned for his second annual humorous, yet informative “News Update.” His presentation was followed by a public health industry overview from Allison Allen, BCE, executive director of QualityPro at the National Pest Management Association.

The Jan. 10 afternoon sessions included a panel discussion titled “Plumbing for Pests,” featuring Dr. Reid Ipser, Nisus Corp.; Galvin Murphy, ACE, Yankee Pest Control; and Pest Management Professional (PMP) columnist Mark “Shep” Sheperdigian, BCE, Rose Pest Solutions. Also presenting that afternoon was Jeff McGovern, The Pest Coach. The day’s events ended with in-person attendees visiting the trade show exhibit reception.

On Jan. 11, the conference encompassed everything from presentations on ladder safety and fumigation to wood borers and understanding pesticide labels. PMP columnist and Schopen Pest Solutions owner Pete Schopen made his Purdue presentation debut with a discussion on “Business and COVID: Lessons Learned.”

On Jan. 12, the conference was packed with topics ranging from a regulatory update to a panel on how to better partner with audited accounts. Rodentologist and PMP Hall of Famer Dr. Bobby Corrigan (Class of 2008) presented “Solutions to Rodent Resistance,” while Insect Limited’s Tom Mueller and Ethan Estabrook, BCE, co-presented “Mating Disruption and Pheromones.” Informative presentations on chipmunks, odorous house ants, stinging insects, vector control and “Pesticides 101” rounded out the day’s agenda.

Plans are underway for the 2023 conference, set to take place Jan. 11-13. More information is available online at


Carrie Campbell, owner of La Porte, Ind.-based Hatfield Pest Control, vice president of the Indiana Pest Management Association and Purdue conference industry chair, welcomed attendees to the opening ceremonies in one of the ballrooms on campus. PHOTO: PMP STAFF



In her Monday morning presentation, the National Pest Management Association’s Allison Allen, BCE, discussed best management practices for public health pests, such as mosquitoes and rodents. PHOTO: PMP STAFF



Outside the official Purdue Pest Management Conference activities, industry groups had a chance to meet in person and catch up with one another. That includes industry fraternity Pi Chi Omega, for which Terminix International’s newly appointed director of technical services, Dr. Cassie Krejci, led both a board meeting and a membership meeting as president. PHOTO: DESIREE STRAUBINGER, BCE



Species identification is very important in food plant fumigation. Cardinal Professional Products’ Ed Hosoda said during his presentation: “Don’t just rely on the client telling you they’re ‘bran bugs. You know, the little brown ones?’” PHOTO: PMP STAFF



In a more serious presentation than his Monday lark, Mark VanderWerp, BCE, shared a tip during his Tuesday carpenter bee presentation: Use a string-trimmer cord to poke into a gallery hole. The amount of “bee bread” adhering to the cord when you pull it back will indicate the gallery depth, he says. PHOTO: PMP STAFF


Robiar Smith, CEO of Chicago, Ill.-based R.B. Pest Solutions, standing, addressed fellow attendees during the Professional Women in Pest Management (PWIPM) meetup the day before the Purdue Conference got underway. PHOTO: ALLISON ALLEN, BCE

About the Author

Heather Gooch

Heather Gooch is the editor-in-chief for PMP magazine. She can be reached at or 330-321-9754.

Leave A Comment

Comments are closed.