The new Cook Museum of Natural Science, which opened June 7, in Decatur, Ala., features a 62,000-square-foot multi-purpose exhibition and visitor center featuring a variety of educational and interactive exhibits that promote science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM).

CARY, N.C. — The Environmental Science business of Bayer recently contributed $45,000 toward the development of the new Cook Museum of Natural Science, which opened on June 7 in Decatur, Ala.

The museum is a 62,000-square-foot multi-purpose exhibition and visitor center featuring a variety of educational and interactive exhibits that promote science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM). Some of the highlights include attractions such as an immersive cave experience and a 15,000-gallon saltwater aquarium. The museum was developed by a non-profit organization that the Cook family — owners of Decatur, Ala.-based Cook’s Pest Control — established to help bring their vision to life of expanding the smaller museum they had operated in Decatur for 36 years. Bayer commended the Cook family on this new state-of-the-art facility.

“We congratulate the Cook family and everyone involved in bringing this exciting new museum from vision to reality,” said Ildem Bozkurt, head of Pest Management & Public Health for Environmental Science. “It not only helps promote science and education in a fun and engaging way, but it is a quintessential example of giving back to the community that you serve on a very meaningful level.”

Bayer says it has a long-standing tradition of supporting STEM and STEAM educational initiatives, both at the national level as well as in the communities it serves. The company was particularly interested in the mission of the Cook Museum of Natural Sciences, as well as the focus of its exhibits on advancing understanding and exploration of the natural world, including its insectarium and live bee exhibit.

“Science education, entomology and pollinator health are all topics that are close to our hearts at Bayer,” said Mark Schneid, head of Environmental Science North America. “We have long been inspired by the Cook family and their passion for STEAM education and for insects. We applaud their efforts and wish them the very best with this wonderful museum, which we hope will draw in visitors from far and wide.”

The museum features immersive exhibits that highlight various habitats such as oceans, rivers and streams, forests, caves, deserts and more. It is projected to attract nearly 215,000 visitors in its first year alone. For more information visit

NPMA Releases 2018 Annual Report

FAIRFAX, Va. — The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) recently released “Making an Impact: 2018 Annual Report.” The report reflects the actions the association has taken to support the membership and the impact the pest control industry has made on the communities it serves, NPMA says.

“Over the last year, NPMA has been collaborating with and listening to members in our community,” said NPMA CEO Dominique Stumpf. “Through continued collaboration and open communication, we can make a significant impact and drive positive progress together.”

NPMA said it has remained focused on the strategic plan it set in 2016: to support members in being professional, knowledgeable, and profitable through education, industry leadership, public policy advocacy and growth of the market.

In 2018, NPMA welcomed more than 500 new member companies; provided members with new online learning opportunities; maintained a push for three priorities within the 2018 Farm Bill; collaborated with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on spreading awareness of public health issues; and hosted the largest PestWorld annual convention.

“We know the work we’re doing together is indeed having a profound impact,” continued Stumpf. “We are energized, ready and poised for growth and we look forward to what the future holds.”

To view NPMA’s 2018 Annual Report, visit


The Aust Group Partners With Children of the Nations

Stuart Aust (fourth from the right) and his family have been volunteering their time and resources to those in need in the country of Sierra Leone.

UPPER SADDLE RIVER, N.J. — The Aust Group recently announced its partnership with the Seattle-based, non-profit organization Children of the Nations (COTN). COTN is committed to lifting children out of poverty and hopelessness by developing them into strong leaders that can impact their nation’s future. COTN has locations in the countries of Malawi, Uganda, Dominican Republic and Haiti; the Aust Group is working alongside COTN and giving back to those living in Sierra Leone.

In January 2019, Stuart Aust and his family visited Sierra Leone with the founders of COTN, Chris and Debbie Clark. With more than 500 students attending from neighboring villages and 100 orphans living on campus, COTN’s Banta Ministry Center is a four-hour drive from Freetown, Sierra Leone’s capital. While in Banta, Stuart and his sons, Nick and Chris, taught entrepreneurial, sales and other business classes to high school students. Stuart’s wife, Donna, and daughter-in-law, Zoe, taught classes on leadership to the school faculty and staff, and threw princess parties for the younger girls at the school. The Aust family also has donated funds for a basketball/soccer court at the school.

Stuart Aust first heard of COTN from his friend Bruce Donoho, owner and president of bird control product manufacturer Bird-B-Gone, who invited him on a trip to Sierra Leone the previous year. After that trip, and learning how almost half a million children had become orphaned due to the ravages of an 11-year Civil War, an AIDS epidemic and a deadly outbreak of Ebola, Aust said he felt called to return to Sierra Leone with his family and join COTN’s mission of bringing hope to the children of this nation. Aust said he is excited to partner with Children of the Nations.

For more information on The Aust Group’s partnership with Children of the Nations, contact Aust at 772/299-8534 or For more information on Children of the Nations, visit


NWCOA Selects New Management Team

PENSACOLA, Fla. — After a nationwide search conducted by the National Wildlife Control Operators Association (NWCOA) Board of Directors, NWCOA announced the selection of Association Resource Solutions (ARS), headquartered in Pensacola, Fla., as its new management team. Christie Meresse was selected as the association’s executive director and she began her new role on July 10.

Meresse holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of West Florida and a bachelor’s degree in criminology from Florida State University. She has worked with large government organizations for more than 10 years and has experience serving as both an association board member, as well as an association management professional. Meresse has worked with a range of organizations to address many challenges including operational efficiency, process improvement and core program revitalization.

“We are excited to work with members and stakeholders of NWCOA and look forward to learning more about the wildlife control profession and to creating new avenues for member benefits, membership growth and professional development for the organization. We are thankful for the hard work and dedication both Andrea (Coron) and Kristin Coron have provided to NWCOA and plan to build on the success they have achieved over the past six years,” Meresse said.


J&J Exterminating’s History Chronicled in New Book

LAFAYETTE, La. — In 2019, J&J Exterminating, Lafayette, La., celebrates 60 years in business and to help the company commemorate its legacy, Bobby John, co-founder and chairman of the board, J&J Exterminating, has published “From the Heart.”

The book was “written in an effort to record the history of our company and to share our corporate culture and values with present and future employees,” Bobby John wrote in the introduction.

The 100-plus-page book chronicles how J&J was formed; how it grew to become the largest independently owned pest control firm in Louisiana; and how the company’s culture plays an integral role in its success. Chapters include:

  • How J&J came to be
  • Family history, family values
  • Gearing up for battle with ‘white ants’
  • Formosan termites invade Lake Charles
  • We got by with a little help from special friends
  • Strong growth began in 1984
  • Our culture. Working from the heart
  • Building blocks of success
  • We’re a faith-based company — and proud of it
  • The importance of selling
  • Opportunity and growth
  • Little feet and big shoes

As Bobby John explained in the introduction, the book was titled “From the Heart” because it reflects the company’s approach to its employees and customers. “From the time we began in 1959 until now, our growth and development have been a direct result of this heartfelt culture and the sincerity of our people.”

Founded in Crowley, La., in 1959 by Bobby John and his brother Harry, an entomologist, J&J Exterminating has grown from two brothers knocking on doors for business to a $29 million business with 13 offices and more than 250 employees. The company remains family-owned under the leadership of Bobby John, his son Robert John and his grandson (Robert John’s son) Robert Lewis John.


PPMA Debuts ‘Will They Eat It?’ with Dr. Mike Bentley

— Termites are known for their voracious wood-based diets, but what happens when they encounter common items like shoes and bath towels? PPMA’s newest video project, “Will They Eat It?” reveals just how destructive termites really are and shows homeowners that these pests are capable of chewing through much more than just wood. The six-part series premiered on July 8 on the PestWorld Facebook and YouTube pages, as well as the “Will They Eat It?” hub.

“While I’ve specialized in structural pests like termites for many years now, I couldn’t help but get excited when I saw the amount of damage they were able to inflict on each item in such a short period of time,” said Michael Bentley, Ph.D., entomologist for the National Pest Management Association and host of the program. “From making a bag of fast food literally disappear, to obliterating red and blue hand towels — and changing color themselves as a result — what better way to show just how fascinatingly voracious termites’ appetites really are than throwing everyday objects into a tank and watching them decimate it in no time at all!”

Episodes introduce items like a burger and fries, a dictionary, headphones, fake money, shoes and towels to these tiny terrors to find out “Will They Eat It?” Here are the results (in case you aren’t able to view all episodes).

Burger & Fries. We all know how delicious fast food is, but for termites, the main course is the packaging. The termites devoured the paper bag and wax paper wrapping holding the food, as cellulose is a major compound in the makeup of paper. Perhaps most fascinating, however, is that the termites ate the entire burger but left the fries behind. PPMA says many fast food chains actually make their burgers with a filler known as powdered cellulose, infusing the compound into everything from buns to meats. This high abundance of cellulose makes greasy burgers as appetizing to termites as they are to humans.

Dictionary. In the same way that termites can destroy a home from the inside out, they decimated the dictionary pages from A to Z but left the front cover intact. These results certainly echo the age-old advice not to judge a book by its cover.

Headphones. The termites ignored the noise and quickly got to work on the headphones, chewing through the outer fabric of the headband and ear cushions, as well as the foam cushions themselves.

Fake Money. PPMA’s termites ate through the currency layer by layer, feasting on the cellulose-rich paper bills.

Shoes. Termites stripped the cotton fabric from a canvas shoe, illustrating how quickly they can chew through household items. Cellulose is the main structural component in plant materials, including cotton textiles, which are typically found in many items.

Towels. The phrase “you are what you eat” certainly rings true when it comes to termites. After chewing through dyed cotton wash cloths, the termites turned blue and red, absorbing the color of the dye they consumed.


Killgerm Celebrates Opening of Germany Office

NEUSS, Germany — Killgerm Germany had a winning night on May 10, with the official opening of its new office in the Taubental industrial estate. Killgerm invited customers them at a casino-themed celebration.

Eighty guests enjoyed bubbly and appetizers and joined in casino games. Among the 80 guests were customers; the Killgerm Germany team; and sister companies, including Killgerm UK, Benelux, Spain and Poland. The night was also sponsored by manufacturers Acotec, Agrisense, AKS, BASF, Bell, Heisenberg, PestWest, Syngenta and Dimo Systems.

Killgerm Germany moved into an office that is 688 square feet bigger than the previous building. The move has given Killgerm Germany extra rooms for more customer training days, ensuring that they can offer optimum support for their customers, the company says. In addition, their warehouse is 984 square feet bigger, which enhances storage, importing and manufacturing, Killgerm added.

Jochen Halle, managing director for Killgerm Germany, said, “Following on from the strong growth we have seen in our business over recent years, the new space we now have in our office and warehouse is very welcome. It will enable us to offer so much more to customers moving into 2020 and beyond.”


WorkWave PestPac Recognized in This Year’s American Business Awards

HOLMDEL, N.J. — WorkWave PestPac was recently honored in the 17th annual American Business Awards as a bronze winner in the cloud application/service category.

Pest control companies can not only manage their business workflows in the office and paperless on mobile with WorkWave PestPac, they can also grow their business through integrated digital marketing features, WorkWave reports.

“We are honored to be recognized in this year’s American Business Awards for the strides WorkWave has made for the commercial pest control industry,” said Marne Martin, CEO of WorkWave. “When it comes to providing powerful SaaS software solutions to pest control companies, WorkWave PestPac has been the leader for over 30 years. Throughout this time, we have been able to gain deep insight into what our customers need, and have consistently worked to embed those needs into our PestPac solution, helping our customers to grow and deliver exceptional service to their commercial customers.”

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